Lock them up and Throw away the key

I can’t believe it’s Monday again or that this is the fourth post I’ve done on my mental health, I never thought I could openly talk about my mental health before, but honestly I love doing it.  I know it’s later than I normally post, but I told myself this was going to be the week that I get all my posts, up on time so I’m taking advantage of the fifteen or so minutes I have before I start getting ready for bed to post.

For the first time in a long time I don’t feel like I’m wearing a mask, I feel free.  For so long I felt so much pressure, to hide everything, I don’t anymore.  It’s time to put away all the masks, and face the world as I am.  I am not perfect but being perfect would be boring, and I would hate to be boring.

I choose four masks to put in my drawing although I wore so many more, but these are the four I feel represent how I hid.  I choose my happy mask, my braided mask, my artist mask, and my adoring mother mask.  I’m all of these things but I don’t need the masks any more, because I’ve found these part of me without them.

My happy mask is an easy one to explain, as with most people with depression I wore it most of the time.  I showed the world this incredibly happy person, even though sometimes I felt like I was dying inside.  There were times I would have to put this mask on just to get out of bed.  It was an easy mask to hide behind, because faking happy is so easy, it’s something we all do.

My braided mask is also in this box, it made it easier to live the happy lie. That being said I still wear my hair braided most of the time, but not for the same reason.  I actually try and change up the braid on a daily basis now.  Some days I wear two braids, one braid, a Katiness braid, a two becomes one braid, and my personal favorite currently up from the bottom, down from the top, bun in the middle.  I chose to wear different braids now, depending on what I think looks best with my outfit.

My artist mask is also in this box, which may seem odd considering my blog is called Mommy vs Art.  But here is the thing in the past I played up the artist, I exaggerated my artist.  I would make sure if I had a studio class in college I wore my art pants, artist you know what I’m talking about, the pants that look like you couldn’t find a rag, we all have them don’t try and pretend you don’t.  I had to tell everyone I was and artist, that I was going to sit through my 6 hour studio class. bla, bla, bla.  Yes I’m an artist but now I don’t feel the need to brag about it.  If people compliment my outfit I might tell them I made it I might not. When they ask about the paintings on my wall I will say that yes I did paint them.  I feel like my artist mask also took my humility, that being said obviously I like showing off my work, after all I have a blog that I illustrate each post, but that’s just for me, and I’m not going to lie it also means I don’t have to find Stock Photos, which I really don’t like and I don’t feel like fit.

And lastly I have my adoring mother mask, because in the past I felt like I had to play up the mom thing.  I had to put out the vibe that being a mother was the most amazing thing I have ever done, and that I’ve never wanted anything more.  I’m going to be completely honest, while I’ve also wanted to be a stay at home mom. However, the life I’m living isn’t the picture perfect SAHM vision I had.  I love my kids don’t get me wrong about that and they are my world, but I’m not sure motherhood is the most amazing thing I’ve ever done.  I’ve done some pretty cool things, that I will tell you about at another time.  This mask made me feel like a good mom, but in all honesty I was a pretty crappy mom for quite a while, even now I wouldn’t call myself an amazing mom, but that is also a post for another day.

These mask have been such a huge part of my life in the past that I felt that the only way I was ever going to move past them was by locking them away.  Much like at the end of White Oleanders where Astrid, has her art show of the suit cases and closes them and stacks them while she tells you a little about them.  I think in the whole movie that is my favorite part I always wished I could have an amazing art show like that.  Who knows maybe some day I will actually create masks, it’s a thought.

So I bid farewell to these masks and I will continue to work I making these four things a part of my life, without the masks.