I know. I know...you DON'T want to be highlighted like this. You don't want me to address in you in such a public format. Writing a letter to you, who do I think I am!? Have I NO SHAME??
You would much prefer to be hiding in the background, peeking occasionally only when you really have to. Like when I say the wrong thing, or when I'm late for something really important, or when I hurt someone I care about. When I fail small. When I fail big. When I fail gigantically. Like that time on stage when I was blinded by the glaring lights and epically fell in a middle of a ballet routine. Or that time when I liked a boy so much I lost the ability to speak. Or that time when I moved to a new city and school because my family fell apart but I didn't tell anyone anything about it for three whole years. You were there for me then.
I know, you don't want anyone to see you, hear you, know that you exist.
You hide well, in a guise of an ethereal wonder woman with a permanent smile, one that says: 'I have no worries in the world, none whatsoever. You can say what you like to me, none would penetrate. I am of steel heart and mind and body. Try me. Namaste bitches.'
Oh my dear shame, you would rather no one knew anything about you. You'd rather be cradled by me, like a baby kangaroo in its mama's pocket. Hiding in broad daylight, always there so subtly. So quiet, until I fall apart, and then you show up like a tornado; All encompassing, wild and swift.
But here we are now, shame. Suddenly, YOU are at the forefront. At the center of the conversation. Receiving all the attention. I bet you are blushing right now, bursting with flashes of red on your cheeks, on your neck. Maybe your eyes are tearing a little bit.
Well, darling, you will get through it. I promise. If you start tip toeing into the world, you'll see soon enough: it isn't too bad out there, really. That time on stage in ballet? Nobody remembers it but me. Nobody! And that boy I liked? He ended up moving away and breaking another girl's heart instead of me. And eventually I did end up telling everyone about my broken family. In fact, I never stopped.
Time heals all wounds, shame. I promise. You gotta come out of your shell a little. Be willing to be seen. We'll walk out together, like Thelma & Louise, going into the abyss because there is no other way! Out to freedom! To be rejuvenated! To let go! You and me shame, what do you say?
I'll hold your hand. Gently, lovingly, carefully.
After all, even a tornado can take in some sunlight.
In April 2020, while experiencing her first ever global pandemic, Tamar Pelzig pledged to write something every day, even if it's only a word, so she welcomed to the world a daily blog to keep her creative writing wheels rolling.
Header Art: Daniel Landerman