In a mild, pensive mood, where melancholy pervades the being. iTunes is playing all the right songs and the surroundings is sufficiently quiet to encourage reflection of a deeper kind. This is the moment when one realizes the search for one’s true self comes to fruition. You realize that this is the real you. For me, it’s this melancholic side: quiet, brooding.
People say that one’s real self comes to light when he or she is drunk; perhaps it’s true. There is the raucous drunk: the social butterfly who is the life of the party. There is the crying drunk: the one who is secretly depressed and filled with sadness. Then, there is the quiet drunk: slightly self-conscious even after imbibing alcohol, contemplative, reflective. It’s ironic how alcohol – the great remover of all inhibitions – should instill an even deeper sense of self-consciousness. Perhaps that’s why drinking has never really worked for me – I don’t get high, I don’t let loose; alcohol makes me more uptight; it fails even to perform its fundamental function as a relaxant. After I realized this a long time ago, I stopped drinking to escape, for there is no point.
Simply being yourself, to use the cliché, is easier said than done. It is not a conscious attempt to strive to be who you’re not – rather, it has more to do with a social obligation to appear friendly, cordial in order to gain the trust and acceptance of others. It is unfortunate that I have fallen into the trap as well, trying to be cheery, bubbly and talkative when I’m not. Sometimes it is simply to fill the silence, other times it’s because I know my pensiveness makes others uncomfortable.
Some find it hard to believe that behind all that intensity and hunger for success that I portray, is a serious, and brooding individual. I find no need to conform to the image that others have. I may vacillate between being outwardly cordial and prohibitively cold, and perhaps all of it is the real me. Sitting here, I make a silent resolution to keep doing what I’m doing, to keep pursuing what I want. But I will not lose myself to the outward appearances that are expected of me.
Melancholy – perhaps my favourite mood of all. Welcoming silence that is not overbearing, a steady stream of thoughts that are not overwhelming, and a controlled flow of emotions that are not overpowering. Clarity, the corollary of a melancholic mood, ensues.