I always kind of knew I was a quiet person deep down, but I am proving it here. Maybe 'proving' isn't the right word, because I can always change that quality if I so choose. I have become quieter here at least. I struggle with opening up to people entirely, and yet I have always preached that such honesty is the best policy. I know it is. If Truth were revealed in every heart, life would be so easy to endure. We wouldn't have to play the mind games. Everyone in my life would have an honest insight to my mind and my manner of being. They may not understand or appreciate my manner of being, but at least it would be honest and we could end the game right then and there. No guesswork in life. Everything just plain as daylight. I have only been so honest with three or four people in my life, and even that is debatable and often has to be forced out of me. I thank those people that are capable of extracting the real me. I am pretty sure you know who you are. You are the people I miss most.
I have always claimed to hate a lot of things when in fact, or so I believe at the moment, I might love them and really want them in my life. I believed my own theories for so long in order to endure the crap life throws at us-- if you really want to call it crap. I am a cynic deep down, but I often contradict myself with a very hopeful heart. Or maybe it isn't that I am a cynic deep down, but rather that I have a hopeful heart deep down and the cynic is the exterior-- the sarcastic part that appeals to the witty side in everyone, thus encouraging laughter which creates only the illusion of hope. That is the side that I once believed was a way to open up to people, but I believe now that is all wrong. It is a fake exterior. An easy way out. I always try to emphasize the negatives of certain things in the hopes of preventing any heart-breaks or chances at failure. I would rather just avoid something entirely if the risk of sadness is involved. Dating, love, marriage, debating with good reason, drinking, trying something new, letting loose on a dance floor, looking like a total fool, breaking the law. All those things and more I now desire and want to enjoy, but I have spent the last 7 years of my life convincing myself to hate them. I deny myself these pleasures, and yet I literally yearn for them. I have lived a contradiction for the last 7 years judging happy people all the time while living my life in secrecy and morose solitude. It is a sick habit one loves to justify, and so I will argue that this marked solitude does have its pros along with its cons. My mind is a constant rollercoaster always thrashing with new thoughts, and with all that thinking I recognize a lot of life's oddities in ways that my peers don't recognize too often, but at the same time I am not always good company. I may appreciate the things that go on in my mind, but I always fail to express those things so that people may enjoy them. I return yet again to my favorite quote, “Happiness is best when shared.” I have been a walking contradiction, and that is very hard on the soul.
I have been denying myself of specific pleasures and desires for a long time now, and, had I lived honest to my heart and fulfilled those basest desires, I imagine I would be a much happier and succcessful person right now. That which one desires must come naturally, right? Maybe not. I made decisions to avoid all those human desires in the hopes that such decisions would eventually pay off some day. When did I think they would pay off? I have been waiting for seven years, and I think I am finally fed up. I could wait around for 40 more years and probably find some good in my reasoning, but I just don't have the patience. And so I would love to now give into my desires even though I still have that little tug of inhibitions hindering me. That tug is me giving up an entire 7 years of highly-valued thoughts. One strong tug, let me tell you. I am trying to give up on all I have stood for in the past; however, I shall not pursue the exact opposite of what I have believed. I shall merely change. Take a new route in life—if I truly have the guts. I say this all now. Easier said than done, but I think that is only true if you live in lies. If we all lived in honesty, 'said' and 'done' woud be of equal easiness. But life keeps going down its funky path, and we will all continue to live in our little worlds of lies—myself included. Life goes.
I am reminded of the oh-so-clever thoughts of Dorian Walker, a Rotary exchange student whose writing I find to be quite amusing. He wrote that living in a foreign country isn't so much about changing to fit in with the natives, but rather about about being comfortable enough to shine in your own skin. I was questioning this one morning on my class trip to Rio Selva Resort. I am pretty much settled in here as far as friendships are concerned; I have friends I trust, and I can be my goofy self around them if I so choose. This would apply well to Dorian's philosophy; however, I was struggling with this after the third night of watching the majority of my classmates party themselves into a drunken stupor. I am all good with the fact that pretty much everyone my age here drinks—a lot. That is all part of the culture, and I personally find it amusing to watch them stumble around laughing at nothing. I do that without alcohol. However, when I participate in the festivities and get bombarded by drunkards demanding that I sing karaoke, I freeze. It would take a hell of a lot of alcohol for me to sing willingly for anyone. After refusing, I managed to ignore their anger and all my lameness was forgotten within ten minutes as they continued screaming and dancing and drinking. The surprising thing is that I didn't pull a super-freak and walk out crying. In that sense I have matured. My tear ducts have somehow malfunctioned since my arrival here, and I consider that a miracle as they once functioned on a daily basis in the States. Instead of blaming everyone else for my discomfort, I just endured it and moved on. I knew everything would be forgotten, and that it didn't matter if they were mad or not. I didn't have time to worry about what everyone else thought. So in that instance at that moment, I was comfortable enough with myself to say no and sincerely mean it.
What bothered me the morning after though, is the fact that I really wanted to sing. I really wish I had it in me to sing for people without trembling to the point of tears. I really wanted to be as comfortable as the rest of my peers to sing obnoxiously and not care what everyone else thinks. This applies to the whole week of partying. Each time I attempted to enjoy their forms of entertainment, I just got tense and angry and annoyed inside. That isn't good right? If I am not comfortable enough to break loose in my own skin, I should oppose Dorian's philosophy and become one of the natives, I thought. What the hell is it that keeps me from enjoying the same things as them?! Well, I finally realized it. The alcohol. Everyone else was so liquored up that they didn't have a care in the world. Everything's fun with alcohol! So I got to thinking a little more. If I need to be intoxicated to do certain things, why would I want to do them at all? I guess I just don't think I should need a false high to enjoy my life. So I waited 7 years of my life to drink alcohol because I convinced myself it was just the nastiest and most vile thing on Earth. That delusion turned out true for me. And you can't say I haven't tried it, because I most definitely have. My curiosity took over recently, so I asked permission to drink at my graduation party. I did not like it. Alcohol is some pretty nasty stuff. In this instance, I am glad I grew up convincing myself that alcohol is an evil thing. It stopped me from doing anything stupid and regrettable in high school. Those seven years of contradictions set my head level. I think twice about doing things, but I now at least am open to them. I am comfortable enough in my own skin to say no to alcohol, but I can also loosen up enough to have a few sips and not judge everyone else that is falling over in the bushes.
I hope I will always remain the quiet, pensive young woman I am, but I can do that and be a happy person at the same time. I don't have to hate things to stop myself from enjoying them, but I also don't have to pull a one-eighty and try everything. I can stop and think hard about things before making any decisions. And I can choose to sit on the sidelines while everyone else is out on the dance floor begging me to cut loose. I enjoy sitting back and watching everyone else party. Quiet observance. I have learned to not judge those that participate in the fun. Now I can appreciate their enjoyment while enjoying my quiet peace at the same time. I have found this new sense of peace. I really am comfortable in my own boring skin here. Dorian was right.
I think I just got through a part of the teenage phase. No going back to change it, so I just as well find some good in it. I learned some stuff along the way, but just when we think we are prepared for the next phase in life we get all confused and the catharsis starts over. Life goes. Holy smokes. I am about to turn 19. Thank goodness I got through puberty. I never want to go through childhood again.
By the way, if you would like to check into Dorian's blog here is the address: dorian-campinas.blogspot.com. He is an incredible writer. Tina, you would absolutely love to read his stuff.