Tag Archive | self-revelation

Day 29 — The person you want to tell everything to, but are too afraid

In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out.  It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being.  We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit.  ~Albert Schweitzer

To someone who wants to be there for me,

I want to tell you everything. I want to lean on you for a while, to allow myself the unimaginable luxury of resting in your strength. I know that you care. And yet I hold back.

I hold back because sometimes, caring isn’t enough. It isn’t the same as being willing to enter the battlefield as a soldier, knowing it isn’t going to be easy. And that is what I need most in my life right now — someone who is willing to fight for me and with me. And honestly, I don’t know if I can ask this of you. I don’t know if I can ask it of anyone.

So I pretend. When we’re together, I use cheerfulness as a shield. I hide my need and my longing behind smiles and wit, for they are the easiest escape. And you laugh right along with me, but there are times when I can see something in your eyes. A patient understanding, perhaps, like you’re just waiting for me to finally let you in. Can you see through me? Will it be enough?

You see, I’ve tried this before. I let someone in, asked him to lend me his strength. I took the incredible risk of exposing the vulnerability of my conflicted heart. And just when I was finally learning to rely on someone else, just when I allowed myself to get used to not being alone, he changed his mind. That’s when I realized that caring isn’t enough. Now there’s an invitation in your eyes whenever I see you, the same invitation that I once accepted from someone else. Will it be different this time? Or will you also change your mind?

I need you more than I allow myself to admit. But still, I hold back.

Hesitant,

Me

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There’s something you need to know before you love someone with bipolar disorder

There are walls around me, walls that keep you out, and I am afraid that you might breach them. But I am also afraid that you wouldn’t even try. To me, you are invader and rescuer at the same time — a dichotomy as confusing as almost everything else in my life. Can you accept this ambivalence inside me, though it is completely alien to you? Can you accept that nothing that involves me is black-and-white, only shades of gray that shift from dark to light with the seasons? Can you watch me give an incredibly convincing performance of happiness and yet believe me when I tell you that I am shattered inside?

I understand that this is too much to ask of anyone, and so I do not. All I ask is that if your answer is no, then leave my walls alone. They are my prison but also my protection, not a challenge for you to overcome. There is more at stake here than you can understand. But if your answer is yes, then you must know now that sooner or later, I am going to hurt you. I do not want to, I do not mean to, but it will happen. The walls are not breached so easily. Forgive me for this, and know that every hurt I cause is a lash against my own heart. And please, if you can, keep trying. Believe it or not, I ache for you to get in.

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Ache

Maybe I was naïve. All of us wear costumes. Who was I to think I could be different, that I, among billions, could be one of the few who are truly free?

And yet. The longing. The unrelenting, immeasurable hunger to be known. To be seen. And being known, being seen, to at last – dare I say it? – be chosen.

How utterly, pitifully ridiculous. And how deeply, dangerously irresistible.

If I could just resign myself to the pretension. Smile and the world smiles with you. Cry and you cry alone. There’s a reason that’s a cliché. Shine, dammit. Nobody wants your shadows.

But I have them. Secret shadows, hiding in the pockets of my brightly colored clothes. And they are as much a part of me as the laughter and the vitality that are deserving of love. A hidden, protected, wounded part. Frightened and undeserving, but needy of love.

I have risked those shadows. Tried to expose them and  hoped someone could bear the sight. Desperately trusted that I, the whole me, could at last be truly not alone.

And yet I still am. Alone and unseen, in plain sight. Beside you.

Maybe I was naïve.

And yet – the longing.

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