i'll be honest, part of the reason the idea for this post popped into my head is because since im an incredibly cool, hip and trendy individual i've ended up owning a horse mask. (random fact. its REALLY hard to play COD while wearing a horse mask. you cant see SHIT!)
one of the phrases that ive heard used a lot when it comes to depression is "putting a brave face on things". some people are incredibly good at doing that.
when my depression first started i didnt want anyone to know about it. i thought it was a sign of weakness. a sign that i wasnt strong enough to be who i am. a sign that i wasnt strong enough to be able to handle situations and events in my life.
the first thing i did was put up what i guess you could call "emotional barriers" to stop people realising that my brain was pretty much screwed.
the first of those barriers is what this post is about. its often the simplest thing to do, even if it is actually REALLY difficult to pull off for a long time.
putting a brave face on.
its pretty much like wearing a mask. inside you may be angry, upset, sad, annoyed, depressed, pissed off or whatever, but you have a happy face on, covering everything else underneath.
at first, its really easy to wear the happy mask. everyone thinks you're just that happy feller. what they dont see is the real you underneath. you're hiding it. and you're doing a bloody good job hiding it as well! hell yeah! gold star sticker for me for hiding my emotions! WOOOOO!
gradually though, that mask gets more and more uncomfortable. it begins to shrink, and soon enough you cant hide behind it. soon that happy face is stretched so thinly over all the pent up anger, aggression, frustration, sadness, loneliness and rage that you cant do it any more. you cant keep a brave face on things. you cant cover things up.
a brave face can only last so long before it shatters, and if you arent able to control the things building up behind the mask then when it does finally break you're pretty much fucked.
the key is finding a way to release those emotions and feelings that you are hiding behind the brave face.
ive mentioned the coke bottle analogy before, (if you drop a bottle of coke on the floor you can either open it slowly, carefully and gradually, controlling the release of the pressure within the bottle, or you can stab holes in the bottle with a pointy stick, which gets rid of the pressure, but you end up with half your drink missing, a buggered bottle and the shirt you're wearing covered in coke) and this is another one of those instances where you need to learn how to release that emotional pressure slowly and gradually, otherwise you end up in a right mess.
i know ive said this before on a few of my posts, but if you are struggling to cope with things then please try and find some help, whether its talking to a friend, going to the doctors or calling a helpline.
its impossible to hide behind a happy face forever. all it does is make you feel worse when that mask finally does end up breaking, especially if you thought you were good at hiding your emotions (which i thought i was). it wounds your pride to have to admit you need help but its worth doing. (i may do a post on "pride" at a later date)