- The front of a building that looks onto a street or open space.
- An outward appearance that is maintained to conceal a less pleasant or creditable reality.
An often mispronounced word when first looked at, well at least I hope so since it took me two attempts, but….
For one reason or another many people create a façade, a role we play for the world to see, that isn’t who we really are. It’s an art form that some of us have mastered. But it is a lie nonetheless. Really, it’s quite sad that we’ve felt it necessary to portray ourselves as something other than who we really are. The origin of all of this is difficult to pinpoint, it likely varies in reason depending on individual circumstances. Regardless of reason, the depth and truth is all too apparent.
I don’t believe it would be a stretch to say we have all gotten to know someone and later been surprised by their actions that didn’t line up with the person we believed them to be. When you begin to truly get to know someone, your perception of them begins to change, for better or worse, because the mask of their façade begins to falter. A façade can only withstand a certain level of closeness, after an imaginary line is crossed it begins to deteriorate and reveal aspects of a person it was created to hide. The point is a façade is temporary and unstable.
To be honest, I’m probably the last person that should be writing or talking about this. It would be very difficult, for me to give you a name of someone who truly knows me, the real me. At the same time, that’s kind of why I decided to write about it.
I’ve spent a lot of time creating various images of myself for the different people I interact with. (Sad, I know.) Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about why. Unfortunately, I haven’t arrived at a profound conclusion. However the more I think about it, the more pathetic the whole idea becomes. It takes a lot of work to maintain a façade and it doesn’t allow you to have truly fulfilling relationships. There is always a void, created by the discrepancy of who you really are and the façade you’ve created. What is worse, it all begins to blur to the point where you aren’t really sure who you are. And that’s what this is really about.
When we create a façade, for whatever reason, we risk losing our identity. We start to become someone we aren’t and lose sight of the person we were meant to be. It has been a few months since I dropped that facade and while a lot has changed for me in those few months, I feel like some things haven’t and never will. It’s a frustrating process that, at times, I really resent. Yet, it’s my fault. If I hadn’t spent so much time worrying about other people and who they wanted me to be, I would know who I am. I wouldn’t have to be on this difficult and, often times, painful journey to find the person I lost or maybe had never found in the first place.
I guess I’m saying all this to simply say: who you are, is better than any façade you can create. Knowing your identity and being that person is infinitely better than playing a role for the world. Because, eventually, you’ll grow tired of juggling the different masks, you’ll lose yourself in the mess of blurred lies you’ve created by the façades you’ve grown so accustom to hiding behind. And that’s worse than being rejected, disappointing someone, or any other reason we feel the need to create a façade in the first place.
If you can relate to any of this, I challenge you to drop the act. I am and though in this moment, that doesn’t mean anything. Hopefully though, a commitment to that will lead me to the person I lost and allow me to begin living as the person I am supposed to be…As I hope for you as well.