I started the draft of this post in response to a daily prompt, Masks. Then , not finding time to write that day, I shelved the idea, but the topic was an interesting one so I kept the draft.
When you say mask, the image that comes to mind can be any thing from the masked figures from a suspense/ thriller movie, to a romantic masked character in a Cinderella like ball! It could also be the traditional costume masks worn in certain cultures, like that of Venice , Korea and some African countries.
But I would like to talk about Everyday Masks that we all wear. Not intentionally but subconsciously!
We are taught to conquer our feelings, to not show our fears and not to divulge out hurts. Be brave, be strong! This constant conditioning has an impact on most of us. We start hiding behind masks.
We mask our fear with a smile of bravado. We hide our tears behind a mask of indifference. The hurt is hidden behind a facade of nonchalance. The weakness is covered by a show of overconfidence.
Have you ever thought why! Why is it not right to show our feelings? Why should the emotions be hidden from the people around us? What is the reason for the pretense?
Maybe the pressure to conform to a certain standard is one of the factors. Girls can cry but boys can’t. Boys have to be brave and fearless. Girls have to be gentle and compassionate. There is nothing wrong in having these qualities in our personalities but projecting the stereotypical image, binds us socially to a fixed standard. We can’t be ourselves. We hide the emotions we are not Supposed to feel. And we wear Masks!
We also wear these masks to protect ourselves from getting hurt. If we wear our hearts on our sleeve then we are going to get hurt. People are going to make light of our misery so it should not be shown. Tears and sorrow, anger and frustration are all hidden. We need to present a side of our personality which doesn’t makes people around us, uncomfortable.
Isn’t it the time to tear away these Masks and to show the world our feelings. The feelings which will set us free from the shackles of the expectations of the society. Be ourselves. Express what we are feeling, but at the same time don’t put the burden of our emotions on others. The expression of hope and fear, love and dismay can be shared with the world around us. This will at least lighten the burden we feel by hiding our true emotions.
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