The Problem With Working Too Well

Do a good job at work, and you just get handed more work by the boss. We’ve all seen it happen, right? And there comes a point when you start to wonder if you should have just done a sloppier job, because the additional pressure is too much.

Interestingly, things work exactly the same way with masks. Do too good a job of hiding yourself from others, and they just give you an extra push or two or ten. And you start to wonder if you should have just done a sloppier job, because the additional pressure is too much.

Let the scars show and they are scared enough to leave you alone.

The problem with that, though, is trying to answer the question of whether you would be able to stand at all without your mask. Or will you be naked and crying on a cold stone floor.

Maybe the pressure isn’t that bad after all.


Walled In

There is a calm that comes after. Once the chaos of uncertainty is over, and you haven’t realized yet what a mess you have been left in. Before you start trying to pick up the pieces and assembling them into something resembling life. You are in the eye of the storm. Do you know that it is but a moment of respite?

Is it but a moment? Can you avoid the chaos that comes after?

It is my calm, but it isn’t my storm. Just passing through, passing by.

When walls fail, all you can do is walk through the wreckage, pick up the pieces, put brick on brick. And hope the glue holds.


Clench your fist. Let your nails dig into your skin. Can you hold hard enough to draw blood?
I choose.
Physical pain is so much easier to deal with. Soothe. Explain. Release.
Wishing I could share the pain of another. Absorb the poison into me.
And let it flow. Or fester.

What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Let me be selfish then.

Why must others endure what I can?

Offerings at the altar of love.


Jealousy. Distaste. Envy. Wonder. 

Not the right words. Not the wrong words either. Just incomplete. 

Disturbing reactions to happiness. Because the reaction is mine but the happiness is not. 

Love and hate in the same glance. And guilt, because the love is as real as the hate. More real? Perhaps not. But with a longer life, for sure. 

Missing the innocence that loved untempered. Unadulterated. Missing the little girl, now lost in a world that doesn’t seem to make sense. 

If only the doll house was enough. 

Being Loved is a Burden

It is hard to say, for fear of hurting those that love me. Perhaps it might be better to say that it isn’t their love that is the burden, but the ways in which it manifests itself.

I am not talking of those who told me that I will make a much better match very soon. As if that could be the only thing to make this ok. Should my life be in limbo, my time filled with waiting and husband-hunting, till that happens? Should I be looking around me, putting every guy I know through the scanner, searching for the “better-match?” Because of course, till that is realized, I am living but a half-life – an unfulfilling cycle of days and nights.

No, I am talking of those that truly care. The few people who I actually call ‘family’. It is their love that I feel burdened by. Without being childish or seeming to pout about it, can I claim that it was my moment of pain more than theirs? And yet, when just the thought of my distress was overwhelming them, I could not chance a demonstration. They felt so much pain for me that they left no room for me to feel anything. Their worry, anger, sorrow surrounded me – intending to shelter, but attacking me instead. And so I hid away behind a mask of humour, and good humour. Rational, practical, unemotional.

Perhaps I am still hiding. Hiding from love, compassion and sympathy – acid corroding my mask.

I falter. The mask slips. But here is the paint! And in a moment I am whole again.