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Why I sleep naked.

 

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I like to sleep naked. When other people are around I prefer to wander the house in just an oversized t-shirt and underwear. When it comes to bedtime habits I like having the doors locked and being left to my vices so I can let my mind wander. I’m back to having to take sleep meds to help me turn my mind off at night. I feel like I sleep best when I’m all alone. Don’t get me wrong, there is a certain level of comfort and peace I have felt when I share my bed with someone I care about, but it is very different from the peace I find when I’m left alone.

I’m a very temperamental person when it comes to my sleeping routine, habits and patterns. I can’t fall asleep with lovers or be held all night. I always end up leaving or pushing them away. I feel frustration with how cold I can be when it comes to the way I sleep. I take my space and I don’t ask for it. If there is one aspect of life that I am completely selfish with it is this. Maybe I haven’t allowed another man to really hold me because I can feel their insincerity? Most of the time I push or go because I don’t feel safe being vulnerable in that way with anyone.

I can’t do spontaneous nights at random friends homes because I can never enter into deep sleep. I could be dragging from sleep deprivation and totally inebriated but still can’t sleep. I’ll lie in the stillness of the room and withdraw inward, turning cold to everything around me. All it does is make me want to run back to my accustomed surroundings because my anxiety won’t let me find rest if I don’t have all my familiar things around me. I need complete silence and utter darkness to drift off into my dreams. I have to have all my doors locked and the fan blowing full blast, regardless of what time of year it is. I need multiple blankets along with a overabundance of pillows. I literally sleep in a little fort I make around myself to keep anything or anyone from touching me. No T.V, no clothes, No distractions…And especially nobody.

It’s sad but I wasn’t always this way. The person I was before needed another body beside her to feel “safe”.  I found familiarity in the noise and chaos. I was more than willing to give up my wants to accommodate the needs of whoever I layed beside, just to ensure I had somebody sleeping next to me. I couldn’t bare the thought of being alone let alone going to bed alone. I needed the goodnight affection and attention while timidly hiding my insecurities underneath baggy clothes. I hated the idea of solitude. I also hated the idea of feeling suffocated so I routinely had the doors wide open.

It’s clear that a lot has changed in the last few years and tonight as I went about my nightly regiment of showering and preparing for bed, it dawned on me how far removed I have indisputably become from the person I once was for so many years.

It doesn’t take a shrink or therapist to see the meaning behind the drastic differences. I often joke and say it’s because I’m a “libra” and shift from one extreme to the other constantly, but no zodiac explanation could have prepared me for such a unforeseen shift of feelings and habits. The answer is blatantly clear to me and it scares me. I have grown to love my solitude so much more than anyone’s company. I’ve grown to love the nothingness more than anyone. I’ve pushed everything and everyone away subconsciously and emotionally. I’ve succeeded in hiding my truest self away from the world. It is evident in my behaviors and the reality is painfully obvious.

I am terrified of true intimacy with anyone or anything. I shut the world out and refuse to allow anyone to see me in my most vulnerable state. For me the most “exposed” would be allowing someone truly into my mind, my bedroom, my routines. It is only here in my safe haven that I allow myself to completely let my guard down, remove the clothes, the make up, the facade and allow myself to act, feel and express myself in whatever manner I deem fit at any given moment. Here in my little den of secrets I write, I sing, I reflect, I cry, I read, I laugh, I dwell, I reminisce, I love, I miss, I mourn, I dread, and I release when left alone. I refuse to let anyone really in physically, emotionally and mentally. I have not given myself fully or willingly to another and truly I have no desire to do so. I often feel bad about this fact but it doesn’t make any of my feelings any less true. No man, no woman, no thing, knows me completely and I have to say, I like it this way.

Some know certain secrets, emotions, thoughts, feelings and habits but not one person knows everything about me. I mean, how could they? I don’t let anyone in entirely. I am a hoarder of secrets and a teller of white lies. I abhor discord and confrontation so I keep a lot of hurt and pain to myself. I even have tangible and intangible things hidden all about my room that even if I died tomorrow not one person would be able to find or be able to comprehend every single little secret. I prefer to remain an attractive illusion, an unsolved mystery, a world of unpredictability to the people that surround me. Here in my tower of mysteries I am safe and unknown, still detected but unable to be defined. I’ve succeeded at shutting out the world but in doing so I have isolated myself completely from the love of self or of anyone else who could really change any of that.

For example, when I explained all this to my counselor she half laughed and then proceeded to ask me if I knew why she gave me such a odd reaction. I had no answer, so I just gazed back at her puzzled. When I finally asked her why she went on to say, “Of all my patients I have to say you’re probably the one that bewilders me and fascinates me the most. You have so many layers and hidden doors within the person you are. You’re truly an enigma, Vanessa. A total paradox and as much as it may frustrate the world, it is because of this truth that you are also so captivating and so irresistibly lovable.” I sat there for what felt like forever in silence until I finally responded by telling her how saddened that made me feel to hear that…

She tends to think I’m too hard on myself and can only see the goodness in others but never in myself. But I was being truthful when I said I hated being so complicated.. and I’ll tell you why.

I have wished my entire life to be like everyone else and just be content with whatever was handed to me. But I have never been able to adapt or change the fundamentals, my heart and morals of who I am. I have mastered the art of being a chameleon but at the end of the day I will always forgive, always love, always care. This is my true nature and how I was created and regardless of the offenses done to me I will wish nothing but good things for those that love or hate me. I may be an “enigma” but I am an enigma with a genuine heart. If I cared once, I still do and will forever. This is the essence of the beast inside of me. This is the pendulum that swings back in forth through my mind and this in itself is why I find myself in such a constant state of unhappiness. I understand when others say that “happiness” and “moving forward” is a choice, and it is to an extent, but what they fail to understand about me is that I am different from whatever version or idea of me they have in their head. I’m still the insecure little girl seeking nothing but love and approval from everyone around her. I crave acceptance and understanding more than anything in this world, so If I have to sacrifice myself to accommodate others by sharing or not sharing parts of myself to spare others I do it.

I do see how trying to please everyone can be confused for “manipulation”, questioned intentions or being “fake,” but if people could stare straight into the intentions of my heart, they would see that I am not a bad person that seeks ill will toward anyone. I just want to love people for who and what they are, while having that same love and acceptance given to me in return. My problem is that I will never ask for it, not openly at least. Instead I’ll try to show it by sacrificing my feelings or emotions for another’s peace and happiness. I do unto others what I hope they would be willing to do unto me. But that rarely is possible. Still I can’t be happy if those I am with are unhappy. What’s mine is yours and what’s yours is still yours as well. I don’t ask out of fear. I don’t ask because I feel like I am asking too much and maybe it’s because I am too much. This is why I give out small unique pieces of myself to those I genuinely love and care for, catered to meet them and their needs. Nothing makes me happier than bringing joy to others…but nothing hurts me more than having to hide or suppress parts of myself to accommodate whoever I am with at any given moment.

I guess I hope that if you take anything from my rambling thoughts or conundrum of emotions and explanations, it’s this..

Just like everyone else on this planet, I too have “skeletons in my closet.” but that isn’t the problem. My issue is that instead of the “skeletons” just being secrets and regrets from the past, the true skeleton in the closet is actually me.

 

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What’s love without tragedy?

An excerpt from the late Arthur Miller’s autobiography about his ex wife Marilyn Monroe.

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