Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Dressed To Impress

Working to make sure I'm thinking the right way.
I'll forget the impression I'm making.
If my attitude is right, the impression will take care of itself.
--Walk In Dry Places
Day 56
Why was I so afraid to be myself? Why did I feel that I needed to have the lack of restraint that alcohol gave me to open myself to others. Was I really opening up the real me? Or was I just caught in a masquerade that I couldn't end, afraid that no one would like me if my make believe persona disappeared. When did I start believing that the fairytale was the real me? Where did the real me go?
At some time in my life I started dressing myself up as a smart mouthed, flirty, life of the party girl. At some point I forgot to take the costume off when the party was over. I wore it until there was mascara running down my cheeks from my tears. I wore it until there were holes in the knees of my fishnet stockings from so many stumbles. I wore it until it was so soiled and ragged that it was unrecognizable as the bright shiny splendid ensemble that I had first put on. At some point it fell into tatters around my feet.
It was time to go shopping for a new wardrobe but I couldn't fathom how many castoffs I would have to struggle through before I found something that fit.
When I moved to MX part-time, it was with the purpose of finding a new costume for my new " masquerade party". I wanted to leave my old drunken sailor rags behind. This time I wanted to dress up as the big hearted, energetic, do-gooder. Unfortunately, I hadn't rehearsed enough for my new "role" and I just wasn't comfortable in my new duds. They didn't fit right and I found myself trying to stitch my old get-up back together but the material had become so thin and frayed that it never held together for very long and it seemed to fall apart quicker and quicker every time. I found myself continually mending new rents and tears, ironing patches onto the biggest holes. Eventually it shredded into tinier and tinier pieces until there was nothing left to salvage. I was naked. And all of my flaws and scars were there for everyone to see. I wanted to cower. I wanted to run and hide. I got down on my hands and knees and started searching desperately for something to clothe myself with and I found just a few scraps that had managed to survive. I sewed them together into a patchwork covering of sorts. I put it on. It fit. It was the most comfortable thing I had worn in a long time. An old cloak, of sorts, made of threadbare fragments of my tattered courage, dignity, will and pride.
Today my house is a disaster zone. We just got home yesterday and haven't unpacked and we're packing to leave tomorrow for two weeks in MX. There are boxes filled to their weight limits with toys for the toy drive and clothes for the rummage sale I'm holding to make money for the toy drive. There is no room for any of my costumes. That's fine. I don't need them, I've got my old cloak. It will be enough.
So today I'm out there just doing my best to unimpress while pressing on.

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