I must say as a person who fears intimacy it takes a lot for me to be touched (especially emotionally ) by someone as I mostly try my best to be distant.
This is most prominent with people who are above me, like elders and people whom I presume have authority above me. It is the same with those on my level like my peers and all. But I’m mostly distant with elders. I would rather run than ever have a conversation with them. So basically I do my best to avoid them.
But today I was so touched by one of my lecturers, worse of all my accounting lecturer. (It has to be mentioned that in our department that is particularly odd). This woman shared her vision for our futures. How she sees us as the future of the country and how she expects us to do good in our different fields of work someday as she already sees us CFOs and CEOs already. She even confessed how much we intimidate her when she walks in to class because she can see our potentials and how big we can become someday. She even cried while telling us this. What really touched me was the passion she had for us and how emotional she got about it. But what stopped my world on its axis and changed my life completely was how she was showing these emotions. Even though we “intimidate” her as she says, she wasn’t fearful of showing her emotions or even showing us her weaknesses. In that moment I realised how human she was. I mean she was even quoting spiderman. That isn’t something you would expect from a lecturer.
I almost ended up crying with her ( even as I write this, my tearducts are iching to just get an opportunity to realise the waterworks ). Considering how I woke up feeling down today, because lately I’ve been struggling to hide my weaknesses anymore. I am now tired of hiding them because there’s too many of them to hide. As i try my best to keep them enclosed in my hands, they just keep on sipping out through the gaps in my fingers. It’s like trying to scoop up sand with your hands while your fingers are spread wide. So this morning I was giving up, ready to throw in the towel saying I can’t do this. I am tired of having to hide my emotions. The more I hide them the more I lose the essence of who I am. Having to pretend that I am strong when I am not is breaking me more than how much my weaknesses decrease me as a person.
I grew up in an environment whereby showing soft emotions was weak. Actually just being human was weak, so you couldn’t show that you are sick or having an emotional moment… stuff like that. I must say as a person who has a soft heart that was hard for me. Because I was reminded daily how much other people were better than me because my weaknesses were prominent. So I wasn’t allowed to show that I was sick or that I needed affection or that I couldn’t do something. I just had to shove it down somewhere deep where it couldn’t be seen and act strong – I say act because it was all pretense, a facade that I can’t keep up anymore.
Due to this the adults that I grew up around had this thing of being invincible. They showed no weaknesses. They gave this impression that as an adult you feel no emotions – except anger, disappointment and an odd moment of a happiness – but especially emotions of affection. Those were just taboo. So to me adults were not humans – you know like they had no human weakness. They were invincible as they knew it all and they got everything figured out. They were the epitome of perfection-as they could do nothing wrong. Or so I thought. As someone who recently joined adulthood I realised that I can’t replicate what I saw growing up. I just can’t do it. I am too weak to pretend to be strong, to pretend to be invincible, to pretend that I don’t feel emotions, to even pretend that I don’t need affection. I just can’t do it. I just can not be that “perfect” adult. I have too many imperfections.
But today, I sat in that lecture hall and watched my lecturer reveal her emotions to us and observed how human she looked at that moment. This is someone I look up to, someone who is already qualified in my profession, someone who has been an adult longer than I have. And she was standing there heart open and bearing her vulnerability to us. She wasn’t covering up who she was and trying to act strong. She bared it all. I was so awestruck. Wow. What a wow moment. A wow life changing moment.