“Oh-oh, yes I’m the great pretender
Pretending that I’m doing well
My need is such I pretend too much
I’m lonely but no one can tell”
~Written by Buck Ram • Copyright © Peermusic Publishing
I have become a great pretender, a master of deceit and disguise. I can play the fool, and act like everything is fine. Only, the girl inside knows that I am shattered, not entirely there, a fraud, and she laughs at my performance.
She knows I’m a liar when I tell my husband, “Oh don’t worry about me, I’m fine; Really I’m fine.”
She taunts me with the voices in my head that shout:
“This is all your fault!”
“Why didn’t you listen to me when I told you not to eat that, not to walk so much!”
“Look what you did, you stupid bitch…”
“You are the reason the babies are gone!”
“I told you not to drink so much water.”
“Why did you walk so much, I told you that induces labor…”
I can’t shut them out. I just want them to go away. I’m weak. I’m so tired. I have no strength. I just want to be able to sleep.
I just want the voices to SHUT UP, I just want them to stop shouting at me, to stop reminding me that this is all my fault.
But they don’t stop, they keep going like a broken record, rotating their messages, ridiculing me as I break down in tears.
Their voices are my grandmother’s, my mother-in-law’s. . .
No one sees that this is going on, no one takes the time to see my pain; and I tell no one.
I lock away this darkness deep inside. In a place only I have the key to, in a place only I can access.
On the outside, I tell everyone, “I’m ok,” and I smile, I laugh at his jokes, I feign excitement and joy,
Internally, the darkness is battling with me. It’s telling me to punish myself, to end myself because why should I live when my daughters have died.
I battle with the darkness to keep myself alive.
Every day I wake up,
I eat breakfast,
I do my chores,
I iron his clothes,
I make him dinner,
I am playing the role of his normal, perfect wife.
I’m so good at playing this role, that he believes me. I never show him my darkness. I only let it out when he’s at work or sleeping. I know he suspects but he doesn’t want to believe I’m still broken, no one wants to believe I’m the fractured soul they see. They all want me to be the strong, happy, joyful girl that they all knew.
Sometimes I try to tell him so the voices don’t win and I can rest but he doesn’t see, he doesn’t want to see. So I’ve learned to just say nothing. My silence gives him solace, gives them all solace. For my husband that’s the only solace I can give him. So that’s what I do.
So I have become the greatest pretender of all. I PRETEND to be the ME; I used to be. I pretend to be FINE because being fine is what they all need to see.
Only I’m NOT Fine. I’m so far from fine, it’s like there is an ocean between us and I’m drowning. I’m drowning because I’m too tired to scream for help, I’m too weighed down to save myself.
I don’t want help because those closest to me are the ones who have damaged me the most.
I am alone.
I welcome the quiet.
Forever in our hearts – my 2 little monkey babies – Zoey + Riley