Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Bruises The Eye Can't See

She's beautiful as usual
with bruises on her ego
and her killer instinct tells her to
be aware of evil men.

Pretty Girl by Sugarcult

I can't do this,
I can't do this,
I can't do this by myself.
I can't do this,
I can't do this,
Oh God, I need Your help.

They're the overachievers, the motivated kids, the ones who are supposedly brilliant, talented, gifted beyond all measure. They're exquisitely sensitive, incredibly attentive, and trust people implicitly. They expect people to keep their word, require honesty, and find themselves confused when confronted with evil. They prefer to take the blame upon themselves as this will enable them to fix it. If everything is somehow their fault, then they'll be able to change it around so that it is okay. It is impossible for them not to take something personally. The world in and of itself is a personal place. All things relate to them. They relate to their world by feeling rather than thinking. This is difficult for people to understand because they are so talented when it comes to critical thinking and analytical skills.

What happens to our beautiful, sensitive girl with the golden soul? She expects to be understood in the same way that she understands others. This expectation is unfair because she has tools at her disposal that many others do not. She has a quick eye and a keen heart that smarts under the blows inflicted upon another. Her sense of justice is finely honed and razor sharp. She deflects pain from others and becomes indignant when injustice prevails. She expects to be taken seriously regardless of her age. She is frustrated by those who will not listen to her because she is too young. But more than anything else, she wants to find a friend who can return her constant, unwavering, outpouring of love.

She is a child who was born to be in love with all things. Everything in the world excites her joy. Love is her natural state. She loves God, her parents (unless they have neglected or abused her, in which case she is conflicted) and people. It is extremely difficult for her to blame others for anything that happens to her due to the conflict that arises when she simultaneously wants to love the person. It is easier for her to excuse others and to pile all mistakes and misunderstandings upon herself. She is extremely harsh when it comes to herself but very generous with others. She believes in magic. To hurt another person is akin to hurting herself, and thus almost impossible for her own sense of physical self-preservation. She is astounded by those who can hurt callously or without thought.

It takes a very long time for her to trust people. Her worst hurts come from people she trusted who failed to come through for her, or worse, betrayed her. It is better never to be vulnerable. To expose onself to another is to risk having them mock or hurt you for the most precious things you have, hold to be true or are. Thus her brilliant acting ability. She wears masks, juggles identities, throws off flame and glitter and glitz in order to protect her core self. The majority of the people she knows believe they know her, but all they know is her glitter. A select few would know her true self.

Despite her careful deceptions and webs, she cannot evade the repercussions of having people hurt her. Her emotional core is fragile. The bruises run deep and infiltrate the bloodstream. Self-doubt, anger, recrimination, censure and loathing run paramount in her head. To look in the mirror is a problematic exercise. Her high standards will never be good enough for Person X. She finds it very difficult to discount the opinions of others. It is easier not to try at all. Thus, her decision to deliberately fail. No one can motivate her if she has decided she doesn't care. She refuses to care about most things. Caring requires openness, vulnerability, and she can only be open to people she is certain won't hurt her. She shuts down the rest of who she is around most people.

Words are weapons. They can shatter her, cut her to pieces. She will remember the words of children who were eight years old and they will still hurt. She will remember moments everyone else has forgotten. The words scar, an interlacing, interlocking web of intricate scarring that covers her skin. And woe betide her if she loves the wrong person. The person has the ability to wreck her self-image, self-esteem, sense of self-worth and the whole way she perceives herself. She is so open that even if they don't intend it, they can hurt her.

She can be very lonely. She doesn't belong in a world comprised of cynical and bitter people. She will retreat from that world, whether via the form of fantasy, imagination, living in her thoughts or creating an alternate means of existence. In her healthy state, she can be amazingly productive in her choice of alternate worlds- a fantastic actress, a wonderful writer. In her unhealthy state, she is very bitter, angry and hateful. She needs to feel like she is doing something with her life and that it is productive. If she doesn't feel productive, she loses all will to live. If she finds that a particular venue (for example, school) is forcing her to be around people who are shutting off her productivity or her way of existence, she will lash out against this trigger. This will take the form of cutting ties with this place.

When you look at her you see a confident, brilliant, with-it person. Underneath it, depending on whether she is healthy or unhealthy, she can be falling apart. There are bruises the eye can't see that may have significantly messed her up. She needs people who believe in her and who will never doubt her. She needs people who love her without conditions or strings attached. She needs people who will never put her in a position where she feels like she's not good enough for them, or can't please them by being who she is, or is somehow inadequate. If she respects the person and feels like she isn't good enough for them, it will kill her. Rather than shifting blame to others, she puts it all on herself. She will hate herself for not being good enough.

She hates being called crazy or any derivative of that. She is not weird or a fruitcake or any form of that word. People who call her names like that don't understand her. There's no such thing as it just being a joke because it's not funny. This is her life and mode of being that you are insulting. It's not the way most people live. That's why people call her names. People dislike what they don't understand. If you call her names, she'll shut you out of her life. There are no second chances. She doesn't forgive.

Be careful with her. She's fragile, delicate. If she loves you, you'll be the luckiest person in the world. If you hurt her, she'll remember it. Be careful with your words around her. Just one moment with your lips and she'll write you off- because she can't be around people who are toxic to her soul. She's had her share of toxic people. In general, she doesn't trust people at all. She trusts God.

That's my portrait of our bruised girl. She's always going to be hurting; it can't be undone. You can just choose to be a person who hurts her further or who is special, different, in a world where she has learned not to expect too much- or anything. To be loved by her is to bask in a light so brilliant and so beautiful that it blinds the eyes of everyone else. But very few are truly loved by her. It's a rare honor and it's earned- and most people, by virtue of the ideals they choose to uphold, will never be able to be the kind that she can love.


Dana said...

You are not crazy. You are funny, amazing and strong. I hope in my attempts to understand you're creatively colorful songs that I have never once called you what you are definitely not.
Knowing you is a privelege :)

Anonymous1:45 said...

You are wonderful and there is nothing wrong with you. There are people who look beautiful but think that they are ugly and enlarge in their mind, every imperfection they have (I think it's called body dismorphic disorder). Your view of yourself, though it seems correct to you, is just as absurd as the beautiful woman who thinks she's ugly. However, your reactions and thought process are not at all crazy. This is because you have a very strong emotional memory, thus any past hurts are felt as if they were just yesterday, and so naturally you instictively do things to make sure you're not hurt again. This is not crazy; it is quite rational. Most people have the gift of forgeting. You shouldn't think that there is anything wrong with you because you can't just forget, like others. I've been in a similar place emotionally, in my life. From someone who,s been there, let me pinpoint some practical analysis and advice. You think too much on other people. I don't mean caring for others, empathizing...All this is good. But you think too much about others' motivations, others' behavior, others' actions, how others might percieve you or your actions. This is not good. When you do this, you pile imagined problems of others' onto your back. Thus, instead of carrying your own load, through your excessive thoughts of others, you are carrying their load as well; or actually in most cases you are carrying your own perception of their load, which in many cases, belive it or not, is even heavier then the load they carry for themselves, as they have the ability to forget things. Try a little exercise, for just one day, don't think about others. I don't mean don't care for others. I mean don't think about what others are thinking, what they think of you, what they think of your actions, how they feel, their opinions... For one day let Chana live in Chanas' head and only in Chanas' head. Continued below..

Anonymous1:45 said...

For example, in thatblog about the little girl with the eye patch. Your inner monologue which you typed, as she gets off the bus. This is not good. For one day let the burden of everyone else off your mind and see how you feel at the end of that day. I'm not saying, disregard others; I'm just saying, for one day don't focus on everybody else. It's good to be a little selfish. 'Ve'ahavte Lere'echa Kamocha'- means first you must love and take care of yourself and be a little selfish, than you can help others. Another thing, let me tell you that most of your perceptions when you think too much about others, are wrong. And so most of these thoughts you are burdening and bombarding your psychi yourself with, are false perceptions. As an objective observer, let me tell you what people see by telling you what I see. You are intelligent, You are a good person, you are clever, you are very self critical (too much so), You analyze from the heart, You are very sensitive (too much so), you think too much about others, and the most beautiful of all your traits is that you trust God above everything else and lean on God and speak to God when times are tough. In your blog you state that you trust God, not people, Then how about for one day just truat in God Lean on God and don't think about others at all and just remove the burden of all your thoughts onto God. When you stop thinking too much about people and learn to be a little selfish then you will have far less burden. Then, you will have much more energy to expend on everything, including helping people. Thus, seemingly paradoxically, by not thinking about others you will end up being able to help others more. Rabbi Nachman of Breslav has a famous saying "It is a Great Mitzvah To Always Be Happy". Isn't this beautiful, Hashem giving a commandment to be Happy ('Vesamachta Bchol Hatov Asher Natan Lecha Hashem Elokecha'). The reason it is a great mitzvah is that happiness allows a person more emotional enegy to do good, and in and of itself it is a mitzvah of hakarat hatov to Hashem. You are wonderful; you are wonderful; you are wonderful; you are wonderful; just be a little selfish; stop thinking too much about others; quiet your mind and just be Happy with God and peace. If you do this then you will see the beautiful amazing person that you really are. The soul connected to Hashem. And if a day is too much at first, then try it for and hour or at least just thirty minutes.

Anonymous said...

I'm reminded of R' Simeon Bar Yochai coming out of the cave time 1 vs 2. The person you describe needs imho to work on understanding the world hkb"h created and how to interface with it in a mutually rewarding way. you know it ain't easy.

Joel Rich

Anonymous said...


One of the most important things we can do in life is to learn to forgive others. We have to. I know it isn't easy or even seemingly possible, but we must forgive.

I do not mean that we must or should forget, that is not what I'm saying; only a fool would allow those who maliciously hurt others do so repeatedly. So, I'm not advocating amnesia. ;)

But, we live in a world of imperfection and all people are flawed. If you cut off all those who have hurt you then there will be no one left....

Chana, trust me on that one thing. I've cut people out of my life and I'm ostensibly alone now.

On occasion when I've made attempts to befriend some folks I've even had people avoid me basically saying "You're uncomfortable to be around because you intimidate us." That really hurt. It crushed me for a time. I wasn't out to intimideate or impress just to help where I could and be a friend.

Don't let the world isolate you, it will do no good for anyone.

Forgive, but you needn't forget.

Anonymous said...

Hey Chana,

"Life’s battles don’t always go
To the stronger or faster man.
But sooner or later, the man who wins
Is the man who thinks he can."

Your motto has always been "I can". And that's fabulous!
I know you since A Crown and whenever I see you, you are this warm, very pretty and caring person who showers people with light and kindness. Many tried to emulate your ways in HSBY(ask Aliza U and the rest),but there is really only one Chana who is incredibly strong, makes people laugh and feel good about themselves. Be proud!

Anonymous said...

since you write about me (lowers gaze) i must comment.

You seem to know me well, at times though you drift away from astute observation. and at others i fail to understand why you act as if to describe only me, for isn't that the way of the WORLD?

Anonymous said...

very useful article. I would love to follow you on twitter. By the way, did any one know that some chinese hacker had hacked twitter yesterday again.