In the past that term, "masks", would have brought to mind a masquerade party, or Halloween costumes or even medical personnel. But not anymore; since the pandemic our understanding has changed a lot. Now I find that I am suspicious of persons who don't wear a mask when out in public. The Arizona governor lifted the state wide mask mandate but many cities have not and continue to require masks in public.
Chris and I have both had the Pfizer vaccine, both shots, but that doesn't make me feel that we should throw caution to the wind. I'm concerned that the "herd immunity" many are counting on is not that reliable yet.
As the Queen of Denial I never realized how transparent my mask was to the world around me in the years that our family lived with alcoholism. Karla praises me for "holding us together" during those years, and I did work my butt off keeping up appearances. By the time Ray and Karla were leaving home and I decided to get off that Merry go Round the question I heard was not "what happened" but "what took you so long". That really made me feel I needed to start being a lot more honest with myself.
I started in the AlAnon program a couple of years after the divorce. A few years of listening to the brutal honesty from the others in those rooms taught me about facing myself. I also learned that reality is a lot easier to live with than any fantasy life. But it also made it more difficult for me to be part of a "social" group where I have to hide my true thoughts and feelings.
I have no patience with social faces and keeping up appearances any longer. Since I have been so isolated during the pandemic I may be pricklier that I was before. Maybe I'm becoming that cactus that is difficult to hug! Perfect for Arizona!
PS. Hope that doesn't add to your stress!!