Sometimes you read texts that moves your brain; other times you read texts that moves your heart.
This morning at 5 o’clock, I came through a text that shook the whole of me up. The title is “Hunger makes me” by Jess Zimmerman. It shook me because it brings an issue I have been struggling with for some years, and that I still consider a part of my dark side. The need to be seen and attended, which I have been considering as one of my greatest weaknesses.
A part of me wants to be seen and treated as a strong independent woman. At the same time I want to be seen as the vulnerable human being I certainly are. The first part has been my mask. Professional success and intellectual strength have been my pillars to survive. But they have also been the heaviest burden to wear.
The essence of the article stroke me right in the center of my being. It made me realize that we all have the need to be accepted in our vulnerability. We are taught not to be noticed in order of being liked. What happens then, when we actually have this human need to be accepted for who we are but we have created a system that expects you to produce hiding your emotionally needs?.
We are raised not to expect too much emotionally, and when we actually get so little, we are punished by showing that we actually crave for more. This contradiction is beautifully described in the following passage:
“Fearing hunger, fearing the loss of control that tips hunger into voraciousness, means fearing asking for anything: nourishment, attention, kindness, consideration, respect. Love, of course, and the manifestations of love. It means being so unwilling to seem “high-maintenance” that we pretend we do not need to be (emotionally) maintained. And eventually, it means losing the ability to recognize what it takes to maintain a self, a heart, a life.
So when I said “I don’t like romance,” it was the equivalent of a dieter insisting she just doesn’t want dessert. I did want it—I just thought I wasn’t allowed.”
The mask fell off. Today at 5 o’clock in the morning.
It has been trembling for the last weeks, it wasn’t glued hard anymore. The last sentence was the last blow to accept my humanness. It went straight to my heart and my soul. To accept that I know now that I am allowed to be loved as I am.
Almost as a revelation, I feel completely naked while I am writing these words. I accept that for the forty first years of my life I didn’t feel allowed to be loved. I have been accepting the least I could afford, but I feel now that I deserve more. I deserve to be loved, accepted and seen for who I am.
This made me actually think further. We are all there. Dragging our baggage around with our masks on, walking around in a dehumanized system that makes fun of us when we dare to show our humanness. Our longing for connection.
I have admired many people that has taken off their masks and they have dared to show their true selves to the world. They are courageous and bold, because they open what many see as weakness and convert it into what it really is; bravery to open up and show their hunger for love.
It takes a strong heart to show your true needs to the world. It takes a broken person to say out loud “I need to be loved as I am”.
I understand now that it is through our scars that we can allow the love to get in. It is when we actually shake off these masks of ours, that we allow ourselves to send the signal of our own hunger.
Our need to be loved and to be admired, our need to be seen and treated as the unique human beings each of us are. In the moment we surrender to face the fear for openness, is the moment we can reach human connection. Until then, we can work not to be leaded by words but we can enjoy to see in each other’s eyes, straight into our humanness.
I have no idea what comes after this revelation. I just feel more human right now.