Stripped to the Core


We all start out in this world basically the same. Open. About what we want. And what we need. We’re so transparent about it all. We cry when we’re hungry. Or tired. Or uncomfortable. And we get fed. We get sleep. And we are comforted. We smile when happy.

We are simple.

We go through our lives, building. Adding all these layers to ourselves. Through our likes and dislikes. That grow. Through our insecurities and fears. That fester. Through our values and our passions. Through all of our upbringing and our experiences. Through everything we do and don’t do.

We build ourselves into who we are.

And here we sit. True individuals. With our personalities. With our own attributes. Our idiosyncrasies. Our habits. We have goals. And dreams. And of course, we have our issues. Things we can’t do. And would never do.

And we have all these complex needs. To maintain who we are.

We build walls here to protect ourselves. And walls over there to shut people out. Walls here because we can’t live like this. And there. Because we now think walls are the answer.

The older we get, the more of all of it that we add. All of us. Layered. Complex. Walled.

Myself included.

Sometimes we turn around and we don’t even know who we are anymore. Or worse, we don’t like who we have become. And don’t like the lives we have built for ourselves.

And with so many walls. With so many layers. All this shit. All around us. We’ve boxed ourselves in. And there is nowhere to go.

At least that’s what it feels like.

What we think we need, is based upon these walls. This maze of walls. Not our true selves.

It’s time to start cutting. Cutting down and cutting back. Peeling away everything. Knocking down my walls. Peeling at the layers. Stripping away hate. And anger. And things of the past that I’m holding onto for no reason at all. The things that bring me down. And hold me down. It’s time to start chipping away the things I have identified that I don’t like in this world. That I don’t like in my world.

I’m cutting all of that away. I have to. It’s too much baggage for anyone to carry around.

But that’s not enough. I’m ready to strip away stuff that I like too. I know this may sound wrong. It’s not. There are so many things in this world I like, and even some things I think I love. I want to rid myself of these things…the things I’m known for in my circles of my friends. And my family. And at work.

I want it all gone. The good and the bad.

I want to get to the core of what makes me…me. The core of what makes me want to be alive. The core of what makes me live. The core of what I value the highest. The most.

I want to boil myself down to only the things I truly, truly love. And truly, truly value.

Get to exactly who I am. And what I am. And exactly the core of what I want to be. It’s not about what I think I need. I want to get to the core of who I need to be. Then build my needs from there. They are simpler. They make sense for the life I want to live. The life I am supposed to live.

I know this sound scary. We built these walls for a reason. For our own protection. To show strength to the world. And we think if we break down these walls. We are vulnerable to the elements. We are vulnerable to people. To insults. To ridicule. To all kinds of things.

But the opposite is true.

Our walls and layers are vulnerable. Because they are bullshit.

Our core is not vulnerable. It can’t be. If we strip away everything except for who we really are. And what we believe. And what we value. And what we love. We go all the way to the studs to get to exactly what matters most to us. Then no one, and nothing will be able to break that. They couldn’t possibly.

Your core is pure strength.

If a friend leaves you because they don’t like the core of who you are, they are not your friend. They are friends with the bullshit version of yourself.

Maybe I shouldn’t use the metaphor of shedding layers, or breaking down walls. But we should think of it like we’re sculptors. Carving into the finest piece of marble that is inside of us. Until we reveal exactly the beauty of who we are. Of exactly what we want to be. This perfect sculpture that is inside all of us.

My core is exposed now. Only my core. Maybe I will seem different to you. Maybe not.

I am a writer. A creator. A person with a big heart. I love a lot of people in this world. I especially love and care for all these people I keep closest to me. I don’t hate anyone. I love to be around people with great energy. I feed off of that. I love my solitude too. A fact that I hid for a while, and now it’s one in which I take pride. I love to work hard. And to be productive. I love to play. And smile. And laugh. I love to make other people smile and laugh. And I want to change the world for the better. Both my own world and the people close to me. And the bigger world that we all live in.

That is who I am. I don’t care what you think about it. Not in a mean way. It’s just that no one else’s opinion matters here.

I am going to build my needs out from here. The needs that service my core values written two paragraphs up. They are so much less. And so much simpler. Than all the things I have needed in the past.

And nothing will break me now that I’m stripped to my core.