When the funhouse isn’t fun anymore

For me, autumn brings to mind all things pumpkin flavored, brightly colored falling leaves, and a host of festivals and fairs to cater to your tastebuds and tempt your pocketbook for the chance of winning some ridiculous human sized stuffed animal.

I remember as a kid getting lost in a maze of funhouse mirrors. It was delightful and entertaining in the beginning. Look at one reflection and you’re tall and skinny, the next one you have fat feet and a little head, and on and on with playful distortions. Until it didn’t seem so playful or fun anymore because you realize you’re lost and all you can see are the malformations surrounding you.

Recently I have been realizing more and more that the reflections I see of myself are distortions, and I feel completely surrounded. It’s no longer any fun because somehow those contorted images became my view of reality.

In conversation with those close to me, I hear their words and find that we view very different images of me. The person they would describe, I am at a loss for how to see.

I want to argue and prove my point. In my mind I am listing all the reasons why their point of view and words cannot be true.

But slowly these last few days I have realized that I am in the midst of a giant, winding maze of misrepresentation. I have lost myself in it for years, this labyrinth of lies concerning who I am as a person: unworthy, unlovely, undesirable, the list goes on and on. I’m realizing the horror in it, the knowledge that this is really how I have come to see myself, and how I expect others to see.

The funhouse mirrors of my mind aren’t fun and entertaining anymore. I want out. Does anyone know which way to the exit?


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