Being vulnerable must be one of the scariest things I’ve had to face in my life. For I’ve always been a strong and independent girl but contrary to what people might think, that wasn’t really my choice. And while having those strong character traits is great, life is all about balance and when vulnerability is absent you have the perfect components to build a soulless human. But let’s go back to the beginning.
During my formative years I had to deal with a somewhat manipulative and toxic environment so, naturally, a coping mechanism was put in place. Don’t show your emotions, don’t open up your heart because it’s going to be crushed and stomped on the floor, don’t speak or express yourself because all your words can be used against you, don’t cry because you’re not allowed to, don’t let them see how much it hurts, suck it up, raise your head and step forward: Strong, cold, ignorant to everything around. Here it is- the strong, independent girl. And yet, who is really strong and who is the weak one?
Now, admitting all this is not easy. We are all so used to play-pretend and share our lives with others, we have a closet full of masks that we put on depending on the situation. Keeping up the appearances is way better than facing the truth…not necessarily in front of others but in front of us. Our egos are playing us like cards. Telling myself repeatedly that i’m strong doesn’t make me less weak and broken inside. In fact the more I pretend that i’m fine and everything is great the worse I get.
“As I began to love myself…”
Being vulnerable in front of people I know feels like throwing all my clothes away while staying there to witness the aftermath. No running, no hiding, not pretending that I’m someone i’m not. I managed to build a prison inside me and locked all my feelings away and didn’t let anyone in. My inner world was completely quieted. What if history repeats itself and I get hurt again… and again… and again? Isn’t it terrifying? Not anymore. Now I realize the cycle is different: People are actually mushy inside when they put up the walls and the strong character and people who are sharing their vulnerability & emotions are the ones who win the game.
For me, being vulnerable means accepting that my past doesn’t define me anymore and that I can freely talk about it and the things that it taught me. The people that hurt me before, are the ones that launched me on this journey of self discovery. I wouldn’t be where I am today without them. The depression I’ve been dealing with for years forced me to lift myself from the ground countless times and to find ways out. Thanks to that I picked up a lot of healthy habits and discovered a lot of things that i’m now interested in. And the most important thing is that I can finally share my feelings and thoughts with people around me. It’s all part of a long, strenuous but with no doubt – fulfilling journey.
And I found myself on this road working towards becoming a better person for me and for everyone around me and it’s only fair to be true to myself and to not hide behind a mask.
So, yes, accepting my vulnerability means I might find myself “naked” in front of everyone that knows only a side of me but I’m ready to take my chances.
This is who I am. Strong, Weak, Flawed. Navigating life, sometimes running, stumbling, falling just like everyone else. Just like you. I’m not perfect and I don’t want to be perfect. I’m just a human with a wide range of feelings and multitude of thoughts waiting impatiently to be shared. But I’m ready now, and I’m excited for this journey!