Mannequin

Eventually I can break free.

Brandon Slesser
Change Your Mind Change Your Life

--

Photo by Buzz Andersen on Unsplash

Marionette

Move the left string and my left arm moves, move the right string and my right arm moves, move both strings and my entire body moves. No control of myself, always being puppeteered by another person. Never being in control of my own thoughts, they are planted in my head. Never being in control of my own emotions, they are sculpted in my heart. Never being in control of my own actions, they are manipulated in my movements. I’m the show they pay to watch. The show that they laugh at when I do something that is deemed as a joke. Never taken serious and always being made to feel that I have to rely on someone else to control me, to manipulate everything about me. Why can’t I ever break free of these strings? Why can’t I RISE UP from the shelf that I am placed on. Voices speaking through me, my tongue isn’t my own. I don’t have it in me to express what I desire. How could I when I have others chattering, bickering, screaming, crying through me. My mouth is pointless and my body is not my own. I am nothing more than a MARIONETTE on puppet strings. Eventually I can break free. Eventually I will be FINE.

Photo by Sivani Bandaru on Unsplash

My Puppeteers

It’s so easy to be swayed and moved around. I don’t complain, I just do. It’s easier that way. Why would I put up a fight when the fight is a civil war. Kin against Kin, bloodied and savage. Never a point of succession. Never a way to escape. How many times have I shed tears? How many times have I lost myself, giving in to threats and demands. Being brought down, broken, then reassembled to their liking. Words of encouragement with a hint of belittlement. I guess it’s a good recipe for disaster, if disaster was served on a silver platter. My PUPPETEERS enjoy telling me what is best, what I should be doing, where I should sit, how I should act, how I should speak. Sometimes I just want to scream, throw a plate and watch the shards of glass slide across the tile floor and then step on them. Go against what they want. Go against what they feel is best and do what I want to do. Act how I want to act and be the person I want to be. The spotlight is on me, and the show must always go on. There is never a time to stop and break, to rest when I am encouraged to continue dancing; to be their jester in a court that only wants to control my every movement. Eventually I can break free. Eventually I will be FINE.

Photo by Miguel Alcântara on Unsplash

The Show Must Go On

Just when I thought that the show was over, that act was done and I could stop being played with like a toy. A toy with no voice of my own, but one that was given to me by others, I realize that it will never happen. Not unless I make it happen. But what can a MANNEQUIN do other than stand still while my extremities are moved by someone else? What can I do when I am made of plastic and foam? Nothing, that’s the answer. Nothing is all a MANNEQUIN can do. If the pose isn’t right, my puppeteers move me to fit into their mold of what I should do. Never having a moment to breathe, never having a moment to stop, always being placed and moved until they find it fitting, until they find it right by their standards. I want to yank myself from them, I want to pull my body away from them. I want…to just find my place. There are times when I think my voice is bubbling up in my throat. The words are slowly forming on my tongue to escape my lips in a rational explosion of expression, but I am quieted down. My lips are glued shut. Stitches and needle moving in and out until my way of explosive expression is suppressed and quieted down. It’s curtain call, “THE SHOW MUST GO ON” they say. “We have eyes watching”. There is no time for thinking. There is no time for feeling. Eventually I can break free. Eventually I will be FINE.

Photo by Gwen King on Unsplash

Instructions

“This is what is best for you.” “If you want this, then I need this.” “This is what you love.” Statements. Sayings. Constantly on repeat. The record player doesn’t skip on these parts. These parts on the record is clear. It’s a never ending cycle of phrases from those that know best. They know what is best for me. They know what I should be doing. Lies. I know what they are. They come off as INSTRUCTIONS, but really they are opinions from someone who thinks we wear the same shoe size. Still even though I know they are opinions I can’t help but take them in and receive them. After all, all a MANNEQUIN needs to do is sit still and look nice. Don’t make waves, unless they tell me too. I guess it’s a good thing I know how to swim. The only time I am approached is when someone walks to me to see if I am going with the grain and not against it. I must always think of them and not think of myself. I am told what to say and feel and even think about. My mind is in a whirlwind and their words are debris I picked up along the way. I try to sling them away, but they never seem to leave me. They are stuck with me until I do what they need, what they feel. I’m growing sick of just standing there, day after day, being altered and adjusted to fit the bubble that they think is right for me. Eventually I can break free. Eventually I will be FINE.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

MASK

If there is one thing that I have learned, it is to put a smile on. To always show teeth and seem happy. Allow other to perceive me as happy then they are happy. After all, MANNEQUINS are good at that. People walk by and observe what they are wearing and see what they find to be worth their time. I am dressed to impress, dressed to draw attention to what my puppeteers desire of me. If I am to be happy, then I am put in something that brings joy. If I am to be hopeful, then I am put in something that sparks faith. If I am to be seasonal, then I am put into something that reminds them of home. Each time I’m am placed into something new, I have to put on a MASK to hide what I am actually feeling. Sometimes I don’t want to wear something happy, or hopeful, or seasonal…sometimes I just want to feel raw and untamed. Still, I put on my MASK, AND PRETEND. I’m so tired of pretending. I’m so tired of covering up. I’m so tired of acting as if I am okay, when the fact is I am not okay. I want to make my own moves on my own, I want to make my own path to discover new things about myself. Eventually I can break free. Eventually I will be FINE.

Photo by John Noonan on Unsplash

Disassembled Parts

Broken apart, piece by piece until I am just parts of the whole. My arms are pulled from my body. My head is pulled from my neck. My legs and torso pulled from each other. All of my pieces placed in a bin until I am needed again. As I lay there looking and watching everyone around me, I find myself jealous of them. I want to live my life with them. I want to leave the confines of my bin and join them, to be a part of the world again. Alas, that doesn’t happen for a MANNEQUIN. We are used for simple things until we become useless, that is until we are needed for another showing. I am DISASSEMBLED PARTS until I am needed. Eventually I can break free. Eventually I will be FINE.

Photo by David Underland on Unsplash

Burning Plastic

There will come a day. It may not tomorrow. The day will come though that I finally tear away those strings that control me. Eventually I will look at my puppeteers and smile a true smile. A smile that is worth more than their words. A smile that it worth more than their manipulations. A smile that is worth more than their ideas. I will smile with truth behind my teeth. I will no longer bend to their will. I will carve a path for myself out of the rock and stone that I am stuck between. I will rise up against their opinions of me. I will rise up against their control. My voice will echo louder than a thunderstorm and lightening will spark at my fingertips. Eventually I will grow tired of all that I am going through and prove to them and to myself that I am more than a MANNEQUIN being motioned by their will, I am BURNING PLASTIC. A phoenix that is rising from the ashes and becoming more than a tool to be manipulated and contorted. I will become a deity, a presence that they bow too. I will become a powerful being, one that who thinks on their own. No more will be I be the MANNEQUIN in the window to be watched or the puppet on the shelf, I will be more, I will finally be me. I WILL BREAK FREE. I WILL BE FINE.

Photo by Vladimir Fedotov on Unsplash

--

--

Brandon Slesser
Change Your Mind Change Your Life

Free spirited, open minded, hopeless romantic, a little stubborn, and an avid thinker.