Looking back, a lot has changed in the past two weeks. I'm still the same person, but my natural suspiscion (although still very strong) has lessened slightly. I'm learning to relax and trust people that I wouldn't before. I even talked a little to my work-fellows yesterday. It's strange. I used to think that I couldn't trust anyone. It was too risky. They might hate me, or taunt me, or even physically attack me. I'm beginning to wonder if I've misjudged everyone. Things seem so different to how they were five years ago. I can't even begin to tell you some of the ways I've changed.
But then, I still remember the pain. The way it hurt every time somebody said I was "weird", or the uncomfortable looks in their faces whenever I tried to talk to them. The overpowering sense of helplessness and alienation whenever the crowd decided to taunt me. It's wasn't my fault I was different. Sometimes I felt like I should belong somewhere else, because I clearly didn't fit into this world. Could society have really changed so much in that time?
It's why I try to hide myself. If people see something they don't understand then they fear it. The fear then turns to violence. The media has told society that if a person is insane they should be locked up, for their own protection and others'. Everybody just wants to live a normal life, and they can't if there's someone who doesn't fit the mold disrupting the pattern of the day.
But now I've met people who aren't afraid of me. They aren't uncomfortable around me. They think I'm cool to be around. It was so improbable that the only two people I talked to would be the ones most likely to accept me as I am. Perhaps it's not so improbable, though. Maybe everyone's like that nowadays. Maybe I've been living in fear for too long. Maybe it's time I learned to let go of my paranoia and trust those around me.
But there's so much that could go wrong. This is my only real chance to get the qualifications I need to further my education. If I let everyone see who I am, and if they reject me, I won't be able to continue. Something I've noticed in society is that a group consciousness always follows the same patterns. As time continues, the group will see me less and less as part of itself, and it will notice more of the differences that seperate us. Like a positive-feedback loop, the situation will grow exponentially worse until the group can tolerate me no longer and I am pushed out. It's happened to me so many times before. Even among weirdos I'm considered weird.
But if I tell them, and they do accept me, I won't have to worry about hiding myself. I can be myself, and I won't be hated for it. I'll have the love and support of a large group of people, and it'll give me the confidence to face life without fear. I won't have to care about what people think of me, because I'll know that it's not the whole world that's against me.
It's hard. To be truthful, it's tearing me apart a little. I have to think about the future. How will my experiences shape me? What consequences will my actions have? Will there ever be a place outside this house that I truly, completely, belong?
Is it worth the risk (and the cost) of rejection to try to join the community?