Somewhere in the last three years, a transformation may have descended without me knowing it. Ever had a feeling when some turn of events seem to have hardened you and turned you into something else? For the most part, that’s how it feels for the last three years. It’s a conglomeration of things, to be honest. But I can no longer look in my old written entries and think or be convinced that it’s the same person.

So it’s true. People really do change. I can only hope that most of these things are for the better, though there are some days that I kind of think that I am more resigned than transformed. But those are fleeting moments. For the most part, I think I am just changing into something and I have to catch up to get to know who this person is, because that person is me and I need to know in order to be wise with life and its inevitable decisions. Once, a man told me that he thinks I am a “Kaleidoscope. I do not much understand but I know that there’s something beautiful there.”

As a teenager, I wore that description like a badge. As I grow into this petite woman in her late twenties, I think I need to really UNDERSTAND what is in that kaleidoscope and not just reduce it to another pretty, obscure face.

Previous things that could have made me throw a needless and frantic fit no longer fazed me. I’ll tell about the incident to my significant other, but it’s as if I am just witnessing my life unfold from the sidelines.I pick the people I talk to and the topics I bring up to them in different categories. I try to share the maximum that I can but there are still millions left unshared from the inside, believe it or not. Such complexity.

I wake up each morning with the grim realization that even when I do my best, it won’t stop the shit from hitting the fan from time to time. And I say this not hopelessly. I just say it with matter-of-fact acceptance. It’s not the bell jar of despair that Plath waxed poetic over. I still do my best. I work so hard, in fact, the hardest I can.I cannot recall any other time in my life where I worked this hard.

But I no longer feel like I need to prove myself to be worth something. I just keep going and I just pursue the things I want, which are becoming clearer and clearer to me. Is it contentment? I sure hope it is. It will make life much easier if I had that even if I don’t have everything a woman can want in life.

But the matter-of-factness does not always save me from the occasional grunt and complaining sighs that escape my mouth. It’s just, at most, some tolerance for the things I cannot change. It’s not like serenity, but I can at least go calmly and placidly amidst the haste for the most part.ย  It lies somewhere between acceptance and tolerance, but it’s a joyless flat stance that I have no words for.

There are deadlines but there is no more rush.I no longer cry over useless things, but I cry over a good book or a good film, as if these entertainments suspend me from this new personal rule I have imposed on myself.

When situations gets unbearably ridiculous and awkward, I seem to have developed a transcendental state where I get affected but I just laugh instead of cry. Isn’t that weird? I laugh when I mean to cry, which inadvertently insults the person who tries to insult me.I don’t mean the laughter as an insult. It just comes out of my lips precisely at those moments of insufferable stupidity and I could not hold it in myself to put up with such nonsense. It’s bad enough when the nonsense becomes a directive.

I laugh at myself mostly, but other people seem to interpret that laughter as an affront to their existence and beliefs. I should really bottle my laughter and save it for nighttime, if only to save myself from the awkward situation of having to explain myself needlessly. Even if I explain, it will not be understood in the way that I want it to be understood. Keeping my trap shut and my keyboard active is quite a good exercise as of late. My relationships with people have been more rewarding when I realized not to engage in topics that they cannot appreciate. You can’t pressure people to understand you. It’s just that one thing you have to contend with yourself and not enforce on others. Even universal wishes of beauty queens like “world peace” is hard to attain as it is, why bore people to tears with these nuances of the complexities of my super convoluted head?

I don’t know if it’s a defense mechanism but these days, I no longer drip senseless rhetoric and a part of me has began to think harder than I have thought in all 27 years of my existence. I think I need to do something but it’s not yet clear as to what it was. But slowly, I think I am reaching the bend in the river of life and I am getting there, surely. And like callouses, the past just whizzed by on top of the thin skin’s surface and I am expecting more, to be more hardened by time when the sand papers of life get worn out from rubbing themselves forcibly on me, a polish and hardened surface.

But the kaleidoscope for all its squishy core and mix of elements are deeply reserved to those who I have let in. They are not many, but I am sure of them.




2 thoughts on “Hardened

  1. That’s true. Even without you knowing, we are transforming and it’s up to you how you will become. We can’t please everybody, I agree. Because even if you do your very best, you will still receive uncalled comments and unsolicited advice. Before I am so sensitive and I cried so many times about what other people say and think about me. But those days are gone, I do what makes me happy. I enjoy life because this is mine after all. I am living for my self, for my family and for God.

    Mommy Maye2

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