You know what irks me? Really,really irks me? Mind games. What to say, when to say it – h-o-w to say it.
Did I miss the dress rehearsal for this act? Because I get a bit confused when there’s this unofficial script people follow, and when I say something “out of script “. Dead silence. I can smell the repugnant odour of awkwardness. People squirm in their seats, exchanging glances. Someone at the back mumbles something. What, did I say something that would translate as something offensive in the nearly extinct language of Ongota ?No? You don’t know that language? Well, neither did I before I googled ‘rare languages’. At least that is something that can be validated.
Allaah knows how long I spent trying to crack this formula of what to say and how, so as not to come across as crude. Ah, come across as crude. Therein lay my problem; I was concerned about appeasing people and I realized I couldn’t do this without losing my authenticity in the process.
You see, for years I’ve spent biting my tongue and becoming red in the face because of what a handful of people deemed cringeworthy or rude. I effectively imprisoned myself and handed the keys over to these people who would dictate what part I reveal of myself. For the longest time I silenced my cognitive dissonance by blaming them for not allowing me to speak my mind. I was passively aggressive as I demanded they hand me back the keys. Well, I didn’t exactly demand demand. I thought about it in my mind, at length mind you.
Til one day ( or most probably night since I do most of my thinking at night :p ) I realized that no matter how unpleasant their cries and whining was, it didn’t have a direct bearing on my life and how I spent it. What was the worst they could muster? Apart from dirty looks? No, I was forced to face the reality of the situation which I had known for sometime but because acknowledging it would entail some consequences I wasn’t ready for, I …feigned ignorance. But now it forced me to look myself squarely in the mirror and admit: it was because I , not they, but I who craved their approval and company thus I had to comply to their standards.
Ouch.That hurt. But it was relieving at the same time. I played with the thought to round its’ edges, to make it more palpable and I felt like a fool. All this time I was looking to the prison warden to release me whilst I had the key in my pocket.
So…what shouldst I doeth with mineth newfound freedom?
I love someone? I tell them
I think someone did good? I compliment them
I think someone hurt me? I confront them
I miss someone? I contact them
I feel mistreated by a near one? I sit down and clarify that I will not take that kind of treatment
I feel I offended/hurt someone? I apologize
I feel a connection with a stranger? I walk up and introduce myself.
Is this risky? Yes. Outrageous and embarrassing? Why should it? If the person to whom you are revealing what’s in your heart is an authentic and honest one, they would appreciate it. If they aren’t, well then your truth would expose them, like the sunlight does vampires.
Whatever the case, what would you rather risk; a potentially embarrassing moment or a lifelong pang of heartache at the regret of having passed up a fleeting opportunity to air your heart and let people know how you really feel about them?