Life, memoir, Stories

Revisiting Chapter 9 – Wearing Masks- “Who Are We Really?”

What hides behind the smiles and the vacant eyes? Aren’t we tired of wearing masks? — Mark Wayne, Cowboys Are Not Supposed to Cry #Memoir #Grief #Healing #LifeAfter #Tramua https://amzn.to/3kdR49E

Chapter 9, Wearing Masks – “Who Are We Really?” is the beginning chapter of Part 2: Embracing the Present of my memoir Cowboys Are Not Supposed to Cry.

This chapter bounces from the recent present, to the fall of 2004 when my only child was born, and back to the summer of 1993 in the months following Luka’s death. The questions I pose throughout this chapter still remain to this day, although many have lost much of their roar and ferocity simply by the act of naming them and casting them out into the world through my memoir. And there is this…

Can a mortal ask questions which God finds unanswerable? Quite easily, I should think. All nonsense questions are unanswerable. ~C.S. Lewis #Quote #WickedQuestions #UnanswerableQuestions

Life is filled with unanswered and unanswerable questions and life seems so random at times. But what if there was a purpose of something larger than ourselves. how would we then live? The questions that haunt our waking hours would slowly melt away and others might rise to take there place.

  • God, what are you up to in all of this?
  • What is my true role in all of this?
  • What is my impact on others?
  • How can I … (fill in the blank)

Just a few questions that I have pondered as I walk this path set before me. As opposed to the why me questions, that still pop up from time to time. Pulling on my boots and moving forward because sometimes when you can you should.

I plodded through my days, often feigning a reluctant acceptance because, you know, cowboys don’t cry; they just ride away.

CHAPTER 9, WEARING MASKS – “WHO ARE WE REALLY?” – PAGE 85, MARK W. SCHUTTER

Read my thoughts on Part 1 – Reconciling the Past and the first eight chapters of my memoir, links below.

Adventure, Life, Writing

The Fear of Being Fearful

I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear. ~Nelson Mandela

Thinking a lot about fear lately.  How it drives us, motivates us and often paralyzes us. We have all heard or seen the lists based on polls of the things people fear the most.  These lists often include the following in no particular order; fear of flying, public speaking, spiders, snakes, dying, heights, pain, etc, etc, etc.  We also have fears with social and emotional implications; rejection, disappointments, abandonment, ridicule, exclusion, etc, etc, etc.

Somewhere, inside, on a deeper level are we often more fearful of others simply knowing that we are afraid?

To allow our fear to be visible, well this implies a transparency and vulnerability allowing others to see us truly as we are.  A matter of trust that others will not betray us when we are transparent and vulnerable.  I know there are times when I often do not raise my hand, speak or stand up when I should.  I tell myself this is because I do not want to offend or to be considered a trouble maker.  I label this fear as one of not wanting to be rejected, ridiculed, shunned or even thought to be stupid.  

On an even deeper level I am now beginning to realize that it is true that my overwhelming fear is a fear of others actually knowing that I am fearful. 

Does that make sense? What do you think?

Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go. ~T. S. Eliot

"Fear"  Photograph digitally enhanced Mark Schutter ©2014
“Fear” Photograph digitally enhanced, Mark Schutter ©2014

I wrote about acknowledging our fears and insecurities in a couple of previous posts which are entitled> You scared? Well… and Fear vs Obedience.

I would love for you to check them out also and let me know your thoughts about fear.