Sunday, October 26, 2014

Super Chicken

Today's Prompt:

Masks Off: We’re less than a week away from Halloween! If you had to design a costume that channeled your true, innermost self, what would that costume look like? Would you dare to wear it?

I know the clever answer here is some kind of metaphor:

"My mask would be a chicken because inside I'm so deeply afraid."
"My mask would be a mouse because I feel so small and insignificant."
"My mask would be Donald Draper because I'm such a Mad Man."

The reality is, when I imagine my true inner self, I only picture it with my face. Maybe it's because I like my face-- most of the time, and as opposed to the way I feel about the rest of the features of my body. Maybe it's because I'm unimaginative.

I think it's because I live my life as a truly open person, when it comes to the people I care about. I don't hide much, I don't hold back anything, and when I'm manipulative or deceitful, I know I'm being manipulative or deceitful, I chock up to it: sometimes while still maintaining the affect of the manipulation.

I lie pretty freely to people I don't care about, or people with whom the terms of my relationship is dictated by societal rules, in some way: family, in-laws, bosses. But I don't lie to the people I care about, whom I've chosen; not about anything significant. And in as much as I treat my imaginary audience here as if they were, collectively, an entity I care about, I don't lie here, either.

I might recite the lies that I tell myself, but you can't fault me for that, if I buy them. I don't know any better than you do.

When I'm with the people I love, I demand of myself absolute, vulnerable truth. The guiding tenet behind this policy is that I assume that any love based on a lie would falter if the truth were told: people who love me based on an act do not love me at all, and their affection becomes useless to me.

I need the love of the people in my life too dearly to risk fearing that it's based on false claims. So I tell the truth; sometimes, exhaustively. Often, to neither my benefit, nor theirs.

It's both brave-- to be completely, unfalteringly yourself despite all costs-- and cowardly-- to be so very afraid of losing love.

So I guess I'll take a superhero chicken mask? The bravest poultry of them all.

Ugh. I so didn't want to dignify that prompt with a real answer. Day 12. On with it.