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The masks we wear

Almost all of us wear masks, sometimes we are not aware of it. Our masks are our disguises we use to fit in. We worry about what others think of us and are often afraid to show others our more odd or vulnerable side. We might not talk about our fandoms or hide the fact we are struggling. The mask that we think is a protection is often just isolating us; a bridge that others can't cross because they don’t know it's there. We hide behind the mask, we hide who we are, the good and the struggles. 

 Part of the path we walk as Jedi is to learn about ourselves and our masks. Through the IP and just being around others in the temple we become aware of the masks. We discover that people are more open and accepting so we learn to open up little by little. We find support and friends within the temple and we find mentors. The IP allows us to dig deep and reflect on ourselves and our world views. We are challenged and prodded to think more deeply into our perspectives and even sometimes forced to realize maybe we are looking at things the wrong way. 

 So now that we are aware of the masks, what do we do? We still want to be accepted. But here is the thing to think about: if I'm willing to accept you for who you are then maybe you're willing to accept me for who I am. That, I think, is the first step to being more open: allowing others to be themselves and with that, accepting the person we are. 

 Here is something else to think about: does the mask get in the way of who you want to be? The path is one of self improvement and becoming the person we want to be. If the mask blocks that path then maybe it doesn’t belong with us. 

 As we walk along our journey we learn more about ourselves and we discover our masks, we learn which ones are the ones we hide behind and the ones that block our growth. We discard those masks, stepping more into our true self. We learn to accept our self for who we are. We grow and maybe just maybe with time and work, past the need for masks. 

 

Knight River- poem

The Cycle Of Shame (Fitting In) 

 

Step One

Everyone here is so put together; I hope I can grow to fit in.

 

Step Two

I'm not sure I can do it, I'll just wear the mask and maybe they'll think I fit in.

 

Step Three

I don't feel like I'm ok, and that's not ok, I'll carve out a space behind this mask for those feelings to fit in.

 

Step Four

Something is wrong with me, I'm not put together well enough to fit in.

 

Step Five

I am something wrong, it's right that I shouldn't fit in.

 

Step Six

The space behind this mask is so full of shame, there's not any room for just me to fit in.

 

Step Seven

I'll let out a small piece, just give myself space for one deep breath to fit in.

 

Step Eight

I didn't realize how much I needed that breath, to create a little space for myself to fit in.

 

Step Nine

If I can do this, share from behind the mask, maybe others will realize they too can fit in.

 

Step Ten

I don't need the mask; I'll create my own space and make sure you know you fit in. 

 

Knight Ashria- poem

When people avoid vulnerability

our own and others

the message is clear

no safe space to share can be found here

so we think 

something is wrong with us

so put together all the others

why do I have these difficult feels

why so many difficult thoughts

which lead to shame

which leads to hurt

something is wrong with me

I must be doing something wrong

in darkness, silence, is where shame lives

its where i belong

If we speak out 

If we speak a loud

we can shine light

with lights touch 

shame withers and love grows

hearts open 

understanding takes root

but we don't

because we think

because we know

something is wrong 

when people show 

vulnerability