Unreal Woman

I have little realizations from time to time that break me down just a little bit further. One such, last night, is that the powder and pigment on a woman’s face is more valuable to others than the woman herself. What’s valuable is the illusion. The visual cue that indicates that the woman has bought in, that she acts in accordance with social norms. That there’s nothing unusual or unpredictable about her. That she is automatically nicer and better as a person.
It all feels like a noose to me. And some days, I feel like a noose is the only escape from that noose. Not that I’ll ever do anything. As long as I can lay in bed for 12 hours a day and play video games while ignoring my husband, I think I can keep going.

My escapist fantasies keep me going as well. As long as I can go and be another person in my mind, in the proper body I should have been born into, everything will be fine. I am treading a fine line at work. I am very lucky to have a manager that seems to know what’s going on with me, though saying anything would be extremely awkward for her, and I am almost certain she has sheltered me from any consequences of coming in late constantly. She’s looked out for me, and that makes me tear up a bit. She wants me to succeed. But the joke’s on her, I’m a loser, baby. A legbeard, a waste of space, you name it. An unreal woman. A bit of carbon just waiting to be reabsorbed.

People act confused when I say I, as a 31 year old woman, don’t have kids. Then they ask,”By choice? Why?” as though they don’t have eyes. I feel some times like I project my inadequacy around me like a visible miasma, like a fog, that should alert everyone in my proximity to get away. I’m always confused when they don’t get it. I mean, my Trunchbull face and build should be enough to warn them off. But no, humiliation has to occur while the hamsters in their headwheel run and run, trying to figure out why I’m not fulfilling a woman’s life’s purpose. The honest answer is,”I don’t like me. I don’t like me enough to make more of me. I’d like to think I’d give my all to a child, just total self sacrifice, but the likelihood is my children would probably be taken away by CPS after I spent six weeks curled in the fetal position in bed.”

No, that explanation, though concise and accurate, is not what people want. They want a sob story, some tragic explanation that shows that yes, I desperately crave woman’s only true and utter bliss- babies – and that the only reason preventing me is God’s mysterious ways. What I want has nothing to do with it. Religion has nothing to do with it. I am a black hole that sucks up warmth and light and returns none of it. I cannot, should not, create life. Crazy is genetic, you know? And ugly is, as well.

My father didn’t want me. My mother did, but could never provide or care for me. My mother couldn’t pull herself out of depression from the divorce to realize that her personal tragedy didn’t matter anymore, because I was there, and I needed her. I don’t know what it’s like to have someone say,”I’m proud of you and I love you. You are my world.” If I ever had children, I’d like to think they’d hear that all the time, to the point of being sick of it. But that’s a “I’d like to think” wistful bullshit notion, not likely what would happen. It’s more certain that I’d just impart my own damage onto them, the way my parents did to me. Because that’s how it goes in life. If you get a good start, your kids are likely to have a good start. Trauma can compound over generations.

I don’t.. I don’t want to be around people anymore. Yet I desperately crave comfort and acceptance. A simply lovely cognitive dissonance.


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