A {Recovering} Chronic Chameleon

Source: Pixabay

 

Oh good, another millennial who doesn’t know who they are or why they’re here. *click*

 

Okay, now that those people are gone… Let me explain.

 

Well. I have recently come to a myriad of revelations, some more welcome than others. And this phrase suddenly materialized within my consciousness. It haunts me, disturbs my (relatively peaceful) days—why and when did I squash my inherent curiosity? 

 

As per usual, there is no simple answer. But the best answer I have is this: I have carefully cultivated the powers of a chameleon. Sadly, I cannot become actually invisible whenever I want. (Actually, neither do chameleons—look it up. Thanks genius boyfriend). But in some senses, I can.

 

At first it happened accidentally—not heard in groups of friends, not seen by teachers. And I hate being the center of attention, so I liked it that way. Most of the time. Occasionally, someone would come along who did hear and see me, and that was refreshing. But for the most part, I contented myself with a sense of belonging. I just… allowed myself to be numb and apathetic, rather than taking the risk or rejection. Chameleons reflect their emotions and react to their environment through nanocrystals in their skin, but I got so good that I could mirror an emotion I wasn’t feeling, adjust to any environment. So I belonged wherever I chose, in almost any group in which I found myself, with anyone who sought me out. I prided myself on it, in fact. Still do.

 

But a chameleon who is curious—well, that is a dead chameleon. Rather quickly. 

 

So at some indeterminable point for some unknown reason, I squished it. I didn’t even know I squished it. And let me tell you, trying to reform something that has been squished is not easy. Don’t believe me? Try to make a loaf of bread look better after it’s been sat on. For years.

 

Sorry, don’t mind my snark. Or actually, do mind! Geez, that’s the whole point of this thing. *eyeroll*

 

Anyways. Basically, my whole world has been rocked. The good news is though, the shell has been cracked and my apathy is slowly but surely being infected by the exuberance of those I have actually chosen to surround myself with. And boy are they just the sort of honest friends I needed.

 

Chameleons continue to grow throughout their lives and so should I.

 

My identity is definitely something I’m still discovering and unearthing. I have spent so much of my life being a chameleon that I’m not entirely sure who I am in the absence of others, when I am alone with myself and with my Lord. My eyes have moved independently of each other for so long that getting them to focus together is laborious. But I am gradually, hesitantly daring to probe the depths of my wounds, to wrestle with the fears that for so many years I have swept under—then vacuumed—the rug. (Yes, you get bonus points if you get that reference.)

 

So in summary: I’m an angsty melancholic existentialist mess of a chameleon. To my fellow chameleons—congratulations on being amazing! But please take the risks of self-discovery and self-expression. If nothing else, it is a grand adventure. And who knows, maybe you’ll acquire a few more shades along the way.

 

The Existentialist Chameleon loves puns and songs that soothe her existential angst. She also loves to annoy Marie with them. If you figure out who she is, she needs a hug.

 

Image Credit:

https://pixabay.com/en/chameleon-mouth-snout-animals-3051482/

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