Obvious really!


Due to localised internet problems, I have been unable to access any of my sites for the past eighteen hours or so – and, for all that this may appear obvious to those of you familiar with my back-story, the technological nightmare has added considerably to the stress I am already under.

People have always said to me, ‘But you seem so strong!’ or, ‘But you are always so lively and cheerful!’ or, ‘You seem to just keep going, keep on coping, somehow…’

Obvious really, isn’t it? What you see is, after all, inevitably what you get, isn’t it?

Well, no, it isn’t actually! The smiling mask can be covering a wail of pain kept down; the bright social chit-chat can be hiding an inner story so ghastly that the listener would reel back in horror if that particular box were flung open; the oh-so-obvious ability to field all problems and keep on keeping on regardless can be as flimsy as a butterfly’s wing.

Yet, we often miss the clear epidermal, behavioural and physiological clues which could tell us that the obvious is yet more needful concealment: The slight tremor of the hands, for instance, or a blanching, or blushing, of the skin; the odd tummy aches or headaches, or feelings of faintness which have no obvious medical explanation: All of these, and more, can show us the desperate lie sheltering beneath the awful need to appear other than we are to reassure others.

Truth? We usually see only what we want, or expect, to see – and a smiling face, a breezy manner, a well-timed joke and a proper concern for others can often blind us to the deep suffering which is lurking behind the sodding obvious!

Forgive me this anger: I have kept a brave face on for the world for bloody ages – and sometimes, when one demand too many fractures the thin ice on my psyche’s lake, I am tempted, ever so briefly, to snarl and shriek and rend a few garments…

But I won’t. After all, I have my obvious reputation for being strong, cheerful, able to cope with whatever life throws at me and support others to live up to, don’t I?

Yes, I can be the life and soul of any party you might like to attend! Yes, I can be hilariously funny and vulgar and rude! Yes, I can, apparently, cope with loads thrown at me at any one time without cracking! Yes, I can appear strong and resolute and determined!

But, underneath the orange-haired Alienora persona, I am often – if less obviously – scared, anxious, despairing, at my wits’ end, overwhelmed and overburdened.

Today? All the arrows of circumstantial stress seem to have been hitting the target that is Alienora more-or-less simultaneously, all Bulls Eyes too – right through the heart. And a part of me would love the obvious solution: Collapse winsomely upon the sward and let someone else take over!


My final thought: Most of you are familiar with the images of myself I show on the blog. But, if I were to post a photo of the little Alienora, you would see, instantly, that the apparently confident soul has not always been that way – and that the bright orange hair is a form of camouflage…


Perhaps this somewhat stressed-looking image of me holding Tigger, my oldest snuggly, is nearer the truth…



9 thoughts on “Obvious really!

  1. I agree that we put on facades to conceal pain and discontentment. And when that facade crumbles, it comes as a surprise to most.

    The weird ways that people cope with stress… and I am guilty of occasionally putting on a facade. (In fact, this may be implicit or explicit in the second half of my post for tomorrow.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think we often come to inhabit the mask so well, Noah, that we forget that it was initially put on to protect us – often from something we no longer need to fear. The odd thing for me is this: I actually do have an orange-haired and extrovert self who bursts through, and was, perhaps, crushed earlier on in my life. The choice of hair colouring is not, I think, a coincidence. I have no problem with going grey per se – and am certainly honest about the natural colour of my hair – and may, one day, revert to natural! xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey you look beautiful. ( uh you are the one on the right….yes pretty sure! 😊) Be calm. Thunder coming tonight watch the lightning feel the power. There is more turbulence in nature than any we concoct in our tiny lives… xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Guffaw! Temptation to say, ‘Nope! I’m the wizened tiger on the left!’ (which I received on my first birthday, btw !) was very strong – but thanks anyway, Ted! Yes, the power is very strong at such times. xxx


  3. Chronic stress has a lot to answer for… and I think you will find that once the inevitable is over and you are settled into that beautiful new place, you’ll feel like a huge weight has lifted…it did for me xxx

    Liked by 1 person

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