The Faces I’ve Worn

*Trigger Warning: Mentions of rape

An essay about me written by me sounds like the perfect opportunity to turn myself into a God. But, I’m told that the world isn’t ready for that yet. So, I’ll be taking the high road here, and will be telling the story of a mortal. Ah, the potential……

Now, deconstructing myself sounded like an easy job in my head when I pitched the idea. I should’ve known better than to trust my inner voice.

I was supposed to go all Philosophical here, explaining how the identities we create intertwine to create our real personality. But, I’ll be taking a different angle here. Namely, how the battles we fight on a daily basis forms the basis for our identities.

I am a writer. A good one, I’m told. Here’s the thing- my personality changes according to the type of topic I’m working on. So, I can be anything from arrogant to carefree to professional. That’s what makes me good at writing. Because I can slip into personalities like changing clothes. One could argue that it makes me untrustworthy. I won’t disagree, but you only know this about me because I told you. What you think about that, is your business, not mine.

I’m openly Bisexual, and I hate that label. All labels, for that matter. Gender, as I’ve come to know, is abstract. I understand that I might be going against numerous people who’ve fought their entire lives to be identified as queer, but I’d rather be identified as human, not queer, not straight, not as a man- as human. I think that’s the more important struggle- to be seen without the goggles of gender, or sexuality, but as humans.

I’m a rape survivor. It happened when I was 12. I was petrified by the events, so naturally I kept it a secret. That meant I had to fight through a serious case of PTSD on my own. But, I was a stubborn, hard-headed child who just wouldn’t back down. That attitude got me through a lot of struggles in my life, and I’m not about to back down now, but that struggle took a toll on me unlike any other. If it wasn’t for the company I keep, I would have been in shackles a long time ago.

As much as I want to say that I’m an open book, I’m not. I am a lot of things. The struggles I faced the rape, the bullying, the humiliations, the broken hearts, the time of poverty- everything showed me something unique. I’m impulsive, because I know how life can turn upside down in an instant. I constantly analyse every moment of my life so that I don’t make the same mistakes over and over. I write to vent myself, to let out the pressure and tension. I’m stubborn, because I know no one will fight for me, and I know second chances are rare. I don’t hesitate to try new things, because that’s how you live. I’m not afraid of failures because they have taught me more lessons than school and college combined.

There was a time when a smile was the best mask I wore. Now that I’m through with that time, I make sure I enjoy myself whenever I can. This may come across as a childish and carefree behaviour. Irresponsible, even. But I always keep my promises, and make my presence known where it counts.

The faces I wear, are not something I hide behind. They’re souvenirs of the wars I fought. Or maybe I just need a good therapist. But hey, I came a long way, with just a few scars and hell of an experience, and without any lasting damage. I think I’m okay, right?

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You can find me under the stars, lost in my thoughts, or neck deep in trouble. Hopeless romantic, Nyctophile and highly impulsive. Living on books, dreams, coffee and cigarettes. Call me V, and consider me human. No other labels.

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