Not Feeling It

We all have those days when we simply want to stay in bed, pull the covers up and hope that the world will pass by quickly. Everyone has those days. Most of us don’t give in; we put our feet on the floor and get on with it, whatever it is. We know better than to give in to the inclination to hide from the world, no matter how much we wish for a day without the noise. We roll out from our cocoon of safety and plaster on an acceptable look of interest, even a smile, at the appropriate times throughout the day. We hide behind our walls of social acceptability and apologize to others for our moments of snappishness while inside, we howl and wail.

Smile, you are so much prettier when you smile.

Really? Maybe I don’t want to smile. Maybe, just maybe, I don’t feel like smiling. Perhaps I have not one thing to smile about, and I don’t care if you think I am pretty or not. Maybe I stopped caring when the man I loved left without looking backward to see if I was standing or if his action had finally knocked me off my feet. Feasibly, the truth is the world has convinced me that pretty doesn’t do a damned thing for me, and your demand is just another powerplay that I no longer give a damn about.

Stop being such a bitch.

What this really means is stop speaking up for yourself; stop speaking your mind. My question is, haven’t I earned this? The people who demand I stop being a “bitch” are telling me to be quiet and accept their direction, their guidance, and ultimately their demands for compliance. Even more than the desire to shut down challenge is the desire to shut down questions. Stop being a bitch means stop questioning authority, stop questioning accepted knowledge, stop questioning social norms, and stop asking questions. Finally, it means to stop being more intelligent than those around you and refusing to dim your light to make them feel better.

Why don’t you lose weight? Maybe you’d get a man if you did.

Well, maybe I would; then again, given I don’t smile and I am a bitch probably I wouldn’t. Has anyone considered the words coming out of their mouths when they say this to a person? A billion-dollar industry is trying to convince us our imperfection is an insult to the world. Every time we pick up a magazine, we see airbrushed models with ‘perfect’ bodies and faces draped in clothing that will never be made in our size, ensuring our egos will be bruised, and we will constantly question our value. Hell, even our friends and family get in on the size 10 or go home free for all. As far as I can see, it is a barrage of mean, with little value other than making the other person feel good about themselves. How about this instead, if a man sees ME, he will like me or not for all that I am. A man who sees ME will see beyond my imperfections to my heart, spirit, intellect, and all I am and will be intrigued. All the micro-aggressions about my imperfections will disappear, and maybe they will start seeing others as human too.

You should wear make-up, color your hair, and cover your scars/tattoos.

It would be best if you minded your business. All these people with thoughts on how others should ‘look’ really do try my patience. It is no wonder I have retreated further and further into my introversion over the years. Yes, my hair is nearly all gray now. I stopped coloring it almost three years ago during COVID. I am sixty-five years old and have earned that silver for the love of all that is holy. I am not trying to fool anyone into believing I am ten years younger. As for the rest, why? That is an honest question, why should I wake in the morning to don make-up that does not make me feel better about myself, so others are comfortable with my public face? My one concession, I have tattooed eyeliner; it saves me time. As for the rest of my tattoos, why does anyone need to express an opinion? First, I love my art; second, some of my art covers scars that I found far more offensive; finally, all of my art tells the story of my life. I have tattoos to help me heal, but it is, frankly, no one’s business. Why do people believe they can judge and speak their judgment? All I can say is mind your business, walk in my shoes, spend even a week in my life and then talk to me or just shut the fuck right up.

Talking to God, your way or mine.

Most of us talk to something, whether it is God, the Great Spirit, our Journal or something else. I do a little of all of that. I am admittedly not very good at any of it by common standards. Indeed, I am irreverent and do not approach discussions with God the way most who profess Christianity believe I should. I have been this way most of my adult life; while I believe God exists, I am not a great believer in Christianity as it is presented today by the White Evangelical Church. I don’t think God cares if we abase ourselves to speak to him, I think he cares that we speak to him at all, that we have a relationship and come with our hearts open, even when we are afraid, or angry, or hurt. I speak to God, I also pray. These are separate things and possibly misunderstood by many. When I pray, I do so in private; I pray for those I love, I pray for those who need prayer, who need healing, who need to be lifted up. I pray for patience and grace for myself because I do not have much of these things. I greatly resent those who would tell me how to speak to God or pray; you do it your way, and I will do it mine. Thus far, God has not sent a lightning bolt to smite me for my irreverence.

Some days it is hard to put both feet on the floor and start another day. It would be so much easier if people were kinder and just minded their business.

Comments

  1. At this point in our lives, Val, we should know not to listen to people tell us what’s best for us. Forget the hair dye and show off those tattoos! Do what you feel is right for you!

    • Yes, I know and I wish it was that easy all the time. No matter how much you want to scream, I am me and I will do what I want, the world all to often shakes you up and reminds you the rules apply to you too.

  2. Well, you definitely don’t need whoever is saying all these asinine things to you in your life. You’re better off without them. You do you and whatever makes you happy.

    • In most cases it is random. That is the most fascinating part of the world today, people feel empowered to simply say whatever they choose to say without considering their role in your life, the harm they might do, or whether their words are welcome. Even twenty years ago we would not speak most of this to strangers, or even casual acquaintances.

  3. For almost all of us merely putting our feet on the floor from bed to face the day really is becoming more challenging and full of despair so it’s simply a mere “poor me” mood.

    • Yes, it is challenging on some days isn’t it? I tell myself it is a mood, but I think it is more than that. Honestly, I think a miasma of despair seems to be lying like a mantle across us all. That is why I tried to identify what ‘annoys’ me. I hope you have fewer ‘poor me’ moods Carl, hell I hope all of us do.

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