Trigger Warnings –
I’ve probably covered this topic before but I am not a sunny man, my disposition, whilst perfectly hospitable, is one of a stone faced man who can only just about force a smile onto his face most of the time. I’m capable of having a laugh and enjoying myself, don’t get me wrong, but my cheeriness is generally quite reserved and softly spoken.
With Christmas fast approaching, I feel I should be excited for it, it’s been a generally good year for me, I have a tight social circle, I know I’ll be receiving some nice gifts and I have gifts lining up for a number of friends and family members, quite good ones too. However, I struggle to feel excited, I always have in all honesty and I’m not 100% sure why but I have theories.
Contrary to the impression given by the number of personal posts I make on this blog, my innermost feelings are really quite valuable to me and I tend to keep them under my hat, which has advantages and disadvantages. The advantage is strength, I can plough on through personal dilemmas and get stuff done. I can suffer indignation and still be driven to rise from the ashes like the metaphorical firebird of legend. Disadvantages are that I give off this impression of never enjoying anything and when people comment on it, I internalise it and so here I am, unable to be excited because everyone has to ask why I never am.
I guess this is a standard of masculinity forced upon me by being a male, the eldest brother of the household at that, everything was about strength and resolve, weakness was not an option. I went out of my way to be a strong person, I had to prove it at every opportunity. Feelings, or at least feelings like excitement, were weak, they were childish and unnecessary to a fighter. All of this loops back to my teenage years of anger and fire, I’ve overcome that part of myself but there is so much more to it than just learning not to resolve problems by punching them in the face, you have to rethink everything.
Overcoming that anger was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done and even now there a handful of people I’d love to do some damage to if there were no consequences to it. However, such things exist only as petty fantasies like we all have, we all know that one guy you would like to see get what’s coming to them, for me I used to do just that by mashing their faces into walls, now I just mumble. The trouble for me was learning to walk away or breathe slowly but also the process of changing because I think only one person ever really had any faith in me, everyone else seemed to label me even after months without so much as a raised voice. Change is like that though, a painter isn’t paid for holding brushes, they’re paid for a painted wall and any substantial change is the same, nobody will applaud you for saying it will happen, only when it has happened and even then they’ll remind you how much of an asshole you used to be. I don’t mind people bringing up my past but when it’s in the context of “You used to be a real sack of shit”, how do I respond adequately?
Anyway, rambling on, this sorta wandered across a broad spectrum. I meant to say I feel too exposed when I’m visibly displaying a passionate emotion and open to mockery so don’t take it personally if I don’t jump up and down grinning when you say you’ve got me a Christmas present. If you ever see me opening up, don’t take it for granted and don’t call attention to it or I will clam up right away.
Final note to anyone struggling to change, don’t give up. People will doubt you, deny you, resent you and maybe try to break you but we are all capable of great things if we have but the courage and resources to try. I used to be a hyperaggressive super jerk with delusions of grandeur, now I’m just me, I’ll leave you to your own descriptions of me from there.