Silence and a Donut

Forgive me for this depressing post. I guess I’m not always laughing at myself. It’s late at night, and I’ll probably  severely edit/delete this post in the morning. I did not read over it, I wrote it on my phone, emailed it to myself then copied & pasted it so please forgive any errors.


There are some days when I can sit in my apartment by myself and not
utter a word for 24 hours or more without even noticing until I check
my call log and realize my last contact with the outer world was two
days before. When I break my silence I always feel like my first
utterances should be some profound product of my silent time that
could’ve have been used for meditation and self reflection. It makes me
sad when those words are usually “good morning can I please have a
medium decaf hazlenut coffee just sugar, no cream”, spoken to a woman
behind a Dunkin’ Donuts counter whom I’m not sure would even understand
my English words had they not pertained to my breakfast order before I
rushed on to work. Would she have been able to conprehend me
explaining to her how lonely it gets in my apartment with only my tv
to make sounds? Or that I’ve tried to find company in relationships
with the wrong men for me and friends who I’m positive don’t
understand me much more than she does because my words are in a
language still kind of foreign to her. My relationships with people
rarely go beyond the surface level “breakfast talk”… Even with the
few people I’ve called best friends (mainly because they’ve given me
the title first), and men that I thought I loved, I don’t think I’ve
ever made a true deep connection with anyone. So I remain silent for
days, not calling anyone or reaching out to anyone because I don’t
know where to begin. I don’t want to talk about the weather or go to a
party, because i am sometimes weary of holding myself up to this facade
I’ve built; my portrayed personality. “we wear the mask that grins and lies” that’s who
I’ve become on the outside. Because I don’t feel close enough to try
to look for solace in any person who “knows” me, I find myself in
Dunkin Donuts, trying to resist the urge to spill my inner most
secrets, withheld words and emotions to a complete stranger, who like
my friends wouldn’t understand what I was saying anyway… So, I stand
there in front of the register, my voice heavy from withholding in
things I dare not say, I repeat my morning routine “Good morning can i
please have a medium decaf hazelnut coffee, just sugar, no cream” …
She asks if that’s all and all too eagerly I say “no!”… “I’d like a
cinnamon donut as well.”

We Wear the Mask

We wear the mask that grins and lies,
It hides our cheeks and shades our eyes,—
This debt we pay to human guile;
With torn and bleeding hearts we smile,
And mouth with myriad subtleties.

Why should the world be over-wise,
In counting all our tears and sighs?
Nay, let them only see us, while
We wear the mask.

We smile, but, O great Christ, our cries
To thee from tortured souls arise.
We sing, but oh the clay is vile
Beneath our feet, and long the mile;
But let the world dream otherwise,
We wear the mask!     –Paul Laurence Dunbar

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7 Comments

  1. Don’t take it down! I’ve been there not too long ago because I had gotten into a tiff with my best friend. I spent a lot of months lonely and ended up even trying to find a replacement friend on Craigslist…certainly something I’m not too proud of but it ended up working. It’s still hard and I still feel like people don’t truly understand me. But I think this is probably a more common feeling than we think. Writing helps. Keep at it.

  2. Thank you everyone for your comments on this post. I was going to take it down, but I got a lot of positive and inspiring responses to this since I posted it. Thanks so much. I feel a little less alone knowing you all are reading and relating 🙂

  3. This is a really profound post. I found your blog on a random search… realized I “knew” you from Morgan. We have never spoken, but I have seen you around. Anyway, this is one of those posts that speak to the human experience…. something that transcends circumstantial things like time, space, gender, race, class and gets right to the heart of life. Your blog has a new fan.

  4. I agree with everyone. You were brave enough and poetic enough to put into words what many of us have felt or are currently feeling. I thank you for sharing.

  5. Definitely dont delete it. I think a lot of people have been where you are at some point in time. I know I have. You have such an heavy heart and you feel as though noone will understand you. Talk to God hes always listening.

  6. Yeah. Don’t delete this. It was very poetic. I felt your pain even though I don’t feel your pain. Good post Frenchie.

  7. I can’t tell you how much this speaks to me and may speak to a lot of others. It brought tears to my eyes because I could never put those same feelings that I have so many days so eloquently. Please don’t delete.


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