1 min read

Behind the Mask

Behind the Mask
Photo by Ehimetalor Akhere Unuabona / Unsplash

When she smiled, the crinkles at the corners of her eyes and the curve of her lips couldn’t hide the sadness, emptiness, and shadows that wrapped her heart in a fiery wrecking ball of emotions.

It was in the way she looked at things deeply, thoughtfully, as if trying to deep-dive to find a motive, even if there were none.

It was the sullen calmness of the things she said, the way she said it, and how she responded as if she had been there before–as if she could relate as if she understood the feeling–the twisted emotions, the joy that comes with little wins, and the bigger ones…

Yet, when niceties were directed at her, her eyes grew wider in shock than satisfaction; you would think she was undeserving of it.

It was in the way she blamed herself for something that wasn’t her fault and apologized fearfully over every minute thing. You’d like to think it’s her mind, painting and repainting the pictures of her past experiences in haunting flashback forms that probably keeps her up at night and makes her restless - tossing and turning till dawn.

Whatever haunted her at night, that kept her restless or awake, whatever memory she revisited each night she shut her eyes, that left her in tears, paralyzed, and trembling in cold sweat born of fear.

She knew she had to address it or allow it to consume her, but she was scared of what the knowledge of the truth could do to her.

So, she hides from herself, unable to face the truth, knowing the revelation of the truth could be the death of her, perhaps the beginning, rebirth of some sort.

Maybe I could rip the band-aid off and tell her she wasn't fooling anyone... that I could see, that I knew... Or maybe I could guide her back to herself, gently, gradually but surely.