Sometimes I feel like my entire life is a performance for some unknown audience outside of myself.
I had a good cry this morning. Like you do when shit happens.
I looked at myself in the bathroom mirror and wondered who it was for.
If I write about it here, was it for you, dear readers?
Some angsty vulnerable moment that I subconsciously know I will share later? Some act that I am performing for the purpose of putting it into some public script after the fact?
If I don’t write about it, or tell anyone, and nobody sees, does it mean anything?
If a tree falls in the forest and etc.
Sometimes it feels like it is ALL performance. All of it. My relationships, my career, my emotions, my entire life, everything.
None of it feels real, none of it matters, they are all just different acts in which I sing pitch-perfect songs in carefully choreographed dances that demonstrate how human I am.
I’m good at it. Successful in most realms, playing the various parts to such perfection that I excel at most of the plays I put on. I’m an accomplished student, a caring daughter, a supportive sister, a successful worker, a kind friend, a loving partner, an impressive dominant, a clever and carefully curated actor of my own creation.
Audience applauds, presents me with a bunch of roses, I smile and humbly accept them.
I take a bow, and move off to another stage, put on a different costume and perform again.
I feel that for once this posts requires me to leave my comfortable lurking…
> I’m an accomplished student, a caring daughter, a supportive sister, a successful worker, a kind friend, a loving partner, an impressive dominant
I do believe you don’t act these parts, you really ARE all these persons. It’s not a performance, just life.
When I lost my second wife I did feel that everything had lost its salt, that life was tasteless, and therefore something close to what you describe as far as acting my life…
You simply feel the pain of the loneliness, feel that what you do doesn’t matter, but you will soon find someone, someone to whom you’ll be everything.
Moreover, do not forget what you mean to us, all your readers. You might think, right now, that this is an act too, that this is virtual and doesn’t matter. You couldn’t be more wrong.
You inspire many people, you give hope. For me, the hope that held me until I finally met the One I want to submit to for the rest of my life…
Take care, because as they say, your second life begins the day you realize you have only one.
Thank you so much for delurking to write this most lovely comment. I appreciate it very much.
I’m so sorry for the loss of your wife, but delighted to hear that you found your One.
I wish you both much more happy-ever-after-ness.
Hey we all value you and completely love you. How is it even possible to not love a gorgeous, razor sharp, sometimes vulnerable, dommey lady?
Take care beautiful Miss Ferns. You bring wonderfulness into our lives.
*smile* Thank you so very much for your loveliness.
I think we all feel like that at some time Ferns, and tomorrow you’ll look in the mirror, smile ruefully and say to yourself you silly mare or whatever phrase you quaint colonial types use in lieu and start again.
I think we mostly say ‘you’ll be right, mate’ *smile*.
“Second guessing yourself”, as the Americans would say: criticizing (*criticising) yourself in hindsight. And doing it all the time. Relentlessly.
What a bag of limp dicks that is. I know: I’ve carried that particular satchel.
Judging your worth, your honesty, your actions retrospectively in a way that you already know will make you distrust you, because you already know that’s how you’d judge others who did that.
Questioning yourself is normal, but what you’re talking about sounds more like an unforgiving and implacable form of undermining and self-debasement.
It’s like constantly being on trial in a …. Kangaroo court.*
There’s nothing unusual about placing yourself at the centre of your own world, but there is something unhealthy and unhappy about running an ongoing conspiracy campaign against yourself.
I would suggest that if you aren’t consciously planning to pretend about who you are, or manipulate people before the act, then you give yourself a break because your after-the-fact judgements on what your subconscious was planning at a previous time will likely be little more than self flagellation. And by god, if anyone is going to flagellate you let it be someone who can take you to dinner afterwards and talk about good movies.
Richard “Damp Satchel” Bagger
*Yesss! Aussie reference!!**
** Kind of.
I know when I write about things like this that people worry: You needn’t worry.
I share things that I think in fleeting moments, when they are strongest, and feel like they need to be voiced out loud. But that doesn’t mean I live there.
Just as I don’t spend my time in perpetuity in the highs that I write about (I wish I could!), I also don’t spend endless time in the lows.
I feel things. I share them. And sometimes they may make you uncomfortable and that’s okay. I take it as a testament to shared experiences and my ability to express them, so thank you.
I’m okay though, don’t worry.
Well I’m glad there’s no need to worry. Particularly as I haven’t had internet for a week, and on the one attempt I made to check your blog it was blocked because it was – apparently – “adult”.
And certainly you do have an ability to express experiences that I can honestly relate to on a personal level.
I remember when you wanted toilet roll and wanted someone else to go out and get it.
Been there. :/
Charles “Aloe Infused” Comfort
I too must break the hidden ‘lurk’ mode to respond. What you’re describing sounds very much like the symptoms of the invisible process called ‘functional high level anxiety’. One of the best explanations I’ve found for this is: “I’m not pretending to be ill. I’ve just always pretended to be well.” Self expectations can be true demons wrecking havoc with self care. Go gently with yourself Ferns, we only get one ride on this ball of mud and unless an action will still be causing reverberations 100 years from now it isn’t worth self recrimination. Moderation in ALL things, including self doubt, is much, much kinder to ourselves.
Thank you for breaking lurk mode *smile*. I appreciate it.
I’ve not heard of ‘functional high level anxiety’, I will have to look it up.
I will go gently, thank you.
The glass is half full.
If you feel like performing all your life, then it may be your true self.
Be true to yourself. Embrace it and make it glow.
It’s what makes you unique. Like fictional X-Men’s abnormal abilities.
It’s in you and with you. You have to carry it alone because nobody else can carry it for you.
Some X-Men focus on the good. You can do that, easily, right?
Focus on the good experience and joy. They may be forgotten. Take your time to recall and savior.
You are exceptional. Why be like everybody else?
“If you feel like performing all your life, then it may be your true self.”
Oh gosh I hope not!
I guess to your point on the glass half full front, at least I feel as if I’m excelling at the things I’m performing even when I’m kind of down (this vs delivering really crappy performances all over the place…) :P.
Your dissociation between conscious and unconscious self is strong.
Like many strong people, you know just how to use it constructively.
I’m feeling so happy to read your wonderful responses, from both you.
Feeling happy… happy… :)
I wonder whether the challenge for us all is simply to strive to be the most authentic versions of ourselves. I don’t what that means to you.? I’m not always sure what it means to me. When, if you find it, I hope it gives you peace.
Authentic is always good, yes.
Well, unless ‘authentic-me’ is an arsehole. Then maybe not…
“I guess to your point on the glass half full front, at least I feel as if I’m excelling at the things I’m performing even when I’m kind of down ”
Try and guess which one I am then
“There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who, when presented with a glass that is exactly half full, say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty.
The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What’s up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don’t think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass! Who’s been pinching my beer?
I wonder if you’re just more sensitive to the `performance’ angle of living due to the blog, where you record personal events and emotions (accurately, I think) for the whole world to see.
I think I’ve solved this and related problems by taking the radical view that *I don’t matter*: what happens to this particular individual, what he feels, experiences or remembers, will die with me (obviously), and hence is of no broader consequence.
What matters–what will survive at least a little longer–is the influence I can have on other people, especially young ones. My career is ideal for that, and it also gives me a chance to leave a written record of new things, which may also survive a little while. My responsibility is to stay healthy and active enough so that can continue to happen for a while.
I don’t know about other areas of your life, but your blog evidently touches a lot of people, helping them make sense of certain things. And (of course) it leaves a record. Your writing is not a performance, it is tangible. So I wouldn’t worry about this too much.
Thank you CF.
I don’t know about the ‘performance because blog’ thing. It IS a valid thing to think about. I know that it manifests in a different way for many other sex bloggers (mostly, they have talked about choosing experiences in their real lives because of their blogworthiness, that is they are living experiences in ORDER to perform them on the blog. I know some bloggers have seriously curtailed their blogs after getting to that point).
If it’s impacting me, it’s in a way of ‘observing myself doing a thing’, so I’m essentially removing myself from the experience. I have always felt a little bit of that. I assume it’s common and I’m not some special snowflake in that. I think, though, that mostly that observation is still quite close. And in what I was writing about, it was observation and questioning from much further away.
And maybe part of it IS that ‘none of this matters’. We are all dust in the end. But I think that if I go too far down that track, that might be a rabbit hole from which I can’t easily return. I don’t know.
I appreciate your thoughts, thank you. And yes my writing is tangible and sometimes does some good. So there’s that.