I pretend to be a strong and confident woman and it’s all simply a show. I pretend for my own benefit as I always assumed one day I would actually feel the things I stated I felt. Seems simple enough, doesn’t it? The reality is so incredibly different and dramatically altered that the two versions are not even close to comparable.
I crave stability and predictability, even as much as I seek out adventure knowing that I have to push myself. I want people in my life whom I can trust and depend on, even while never trusting anyone and never seeking assistance. I act aloof when it comes to involvement with men on the fringes of my life, because I truly feel I can no longer connect.
I was broken. It wasn’t heartache or the long term accumulation of disappointments. It was finally getting the courage up to take a leap of faith only to be shown that there was no safety net, there was no helping hand, there was nothing there and as a result I fell into an abyss of hurt so horribly sharp that it broke something fundamental inside of me.
There has been distance in my relationships since then. I have felt myself step away from people and while I still pretend to care, I actually don’t. I won’t go so far as to say I have become dissociative but I can without hesitation say that my walls are so high and so wide, re-built in an instant, that I neither want to attempt to bring them down again or give anyone the opportunity to help me dismantle them.
I can’t quite find the wording for how I feel because how I feel, is separate from feelings; compassion without warmth, caring without connection, intimacy without a soul. I’m not embittered or hardened, I’m simply…absent. I look at people sharing intimate loving moments and it’s fascinating in an almost clinical way. The word ‘love’ means nothing. Actions mean everything. And I trust that no actions come without conditions even if they are unknown or unspoken.
Trust is completely missing from my world. I truly trust no one including myself. It’s not to say that I don’t believe and accept that people exhibit trusting behaviours, but often it’s because they benefit from it and not because of altruistic reasons. Lies of omissions, lies you tell yourself, an unwillingness to believe what you see because you feel a different way and want to believe the lies being told to you.
Then once you are faced with the truth and your own culpability it alters everything in your world. I don’t fall in love easily. I fight it because I hate being vulnerable to another person. And when I finally stepped outside my comfort zone and attempted to love, I was broken. The damage that event caused me, may hamper who I want to be for an indefinite time in my future. Two years later and I am still impacted by it and realizing just how deep the damage was.
I have doubt and fear living inside of my heart instead of love. It takes energy to keep those negative things at bay simply so I can exist and function. I no longer trust love because for years it was proven time and again to not and when I chanced it, there was disaster. The personal damage that created was far more reaching than I expected it to be, considering the nature of the relationship I lost. I don’t enjoy knowing that I still have unhealed pain from it that impacts how I accept others into my life.
My only solution is to work as I am, push as I do, pretend as I must and keep assuming that one day things will eventually become fixed if I keep putting things together. My biggest fear is that the damage was so extensive that no matter what is erected in its place, I will never be able to sustain it because the foundation has been crushed to rubble too many times to provide a solid platform for anything great to rise from again.