Changeling

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I call myself that on account of this power that I have. I’m able to change into anything I want to be. No, that’s not correct. I’m able to change into anything you want me to be.

Come talk to me and I’ll show you. You won’t notice it at first. You won’t notice how my hair sparkles or my eyes flicker in color. You won’t notice how my voice shifts to complement yours, how my complexion darkens or lightens to suit your mood. You’ll be too focused on the words that I’ll be saying and the ways in which I’ll be saying them. But soon those words won’t matter. Because by the time my change is complete, you’ll be utterly entranced by me. And then you’ll begin noticing.

You’ll see the mysterious light that shines out of my mesmerizing eyes and the warmth that emanates from my rosy cheeks. You’ll see in me a personality that exactly matches yours or a personality that you always wished you had. You’ll marvel at the great breadth of my knowledge and profundity of my mind. My dignified manners will steal your respect and fuel your admiration for me. And when you leave, the melody of my voice will continue to ring in your head and the flow of my gestures will continue to play in your mind.

You’ll yearn for the times that you spend with me—the sense of security that my company provides for you when you’re scared, the merriment I give you when you’re depressed, and the consolations you take from me when you’re sad. Soon, you’ll realize that I understand you completely.

You’ll begin to think of me as your best friend in the world—just like everyone else already does. But you won’t notice that, you won’t notice how my appearance and mannerism changes when I talk to someone new, you won’t notice how I seem to be able to associate with anyone and everyone as if I’ve known them forever, and you definitely won’t notice that I may not think of you in the same way that you think of me. No, because to you, I’m the best thing that could ever happened. I’m the person that you can always turn to—the person whom you can always trust for confidence and consolation. I’m there at your constant beck and call, at your every little whim.

* * *

But then what about me? Do I not have a say in the type of person I want to be? Do I not get to choose the kind of life that I wish to live?

Sometimes I wonder why you don’t despise me for what I am. Can you not sense the falseness that lies just behind my disarming smile and merry eyes? I wish you would do so. But then I realize that it’s because you’re captivated by my charm—but I’m the real prisoner.

Of course, the fault isn’t yours; it’s mine. It’s because I wish to please so much that I mold myself into your puppet and place myself into the world you make for me—a world in which I serve you. But no matter how many different people I change into, there is still one person I haven’t become yet. There is still hope for me to change into myself.

* * *

As I looked through the mirror I feel the transformation coming on like many times before. But this time, my hair doesn’t flicker, my eyes don’t flash, and my voice doesn’t sound like an orchestra. Instead each finds its own defining color, hue, and pitch and though they may not be the most enviable colors or the most enviable sounds, they are a part of me. For once I feel proud at the way I look.

My external features eventually solidify as I begin to feel a new sensation well up within me. It’s something I’ve never felt before—an inexplicable calmness that makes me believe in myself and my capabilities. As my final changes take place, I at the mirror again and witness my final transformation. I’ve emerged from my cocoon of conformity to become the butterfly that is truly I.

Never again will I be a Changeling.





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Zheng H. said...
May 6, 2009 at 5:00 pm
I'm impressed by your aspiration so strong to be nothing but yourself. And I'm pleased to see you made it finally - beautiful!
 
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