January 31, 2023

I cannot.
I do not have the strength to open and let my heart out. I do not like the feeling of being vulnerable, even though people keep telling me, “Huwag mong sarilihin, sabihin mo sa amin.” For me, this is easier said than done. I’m torn between myself as I want to be heard but also want to be silent.
Being delicate, I tend to take everything seriously and take it to heart. Because of this, I often sob and lament especially during my younger days. I often cry when people say things like, “Ang sensitive mo naman. Biro lang ‘yun eh,” or “Ang drama mo naman,” I promised that I won’t ever cry in front of others or express certain feelings to anyone again.
From then on, in front of other people, I just laughed out loud about everything that is painful or things that hurt me. But every time I get home, open my room, and lock the door, I just suddenly burst into tears. I cry my heart out, pounding my chest as everything piles up and realizations hit me. Those times made me vulnerable. I just want to keep everything to myself as I did not want to be judged and be called a “delicate, sensitive girl.”
This went on for a long time. I just did not cry. I always just said, “Okay. It is okay.” It was like it meant nothing to me, and I did not feel much pain. Or maybe, I was just used to it.
I grew up keeping everything to myself, hiding my feelings and everything about me –
how I feel, what I feel. I don’t want anyone to know what is going on with me, so I put on a sweet smile and happy life, but it is the opposite whenever people are not around. My room is the only witness of every heartache, every teardrop. It is surely the “me” inside a secured box where I can be myself.
I do not want to be judged. I do not want to see their eyes saying, “Nakakaawa siya.” Hence, as much as I can hold back my emotions, I try as hard as I can to suppress the sentiments.
But not everything I could keep inside. Withholding all and bearing the pain, I would explode like a ticking bomb. There was a time when I unexpectedly shattered. I did not mean to harm or hurt others, but I unintentionally did. During this argument, I was looking down and tears just started to flow. I started shouting at the top of my lungs. I fret as soon as I raised my head, and it sounded the most deafening “boom!” I have ever heard in my life. Thoughts simply occurred to me, and cruel words just kept coming out of my mouth, freeing myself of everything that piled up inside me. I let myself be heard, even just once, for the past years. At the time, I was so vulnerable. I am not going to lie, as I recall everything that happened at the time. I felt a lot of self-pity.
For all that happened, however, expressing myself feels like putting down all my defenses and withdrawing from the battle. I realized that being vulnerable is not a weakness, and it never was. I was wrong about the mentality that I can handle everything. So I decided that whenever I could not handle it anymore, I would open and let my heart out. I won’t let history repeat itself; that’s why I am learning and knowing when I should be vulnerable. Thus, I see that vulnerability may result in a compromised physical and mental well-being, either in a good or bad way.