When I saw Artificial in the list of daily prompts, “YAASSS!” was my first reaction. So let me extrapolate on this one from perspective of my several artificial selves.
You see, I’m just an average person with average fears, self-sabotaging attitudes, day-to-day struggles and very subjective view on the world. Very fragile creature deep down, under the makeup, clothes and alter egos. And because times can be rather tough, it seems that nowadays everybody has some expectations you should meet (yeah, haha, joke’s on you babe, I’m over that), I developed some coping mechanisms in form of artificial personas.
Some people aren’t happy with that, they think I’m fake. Oh really? It’s still me, just artificially polite and smiling. Luv, I work in hospitality, I’m a waitress! If you behave like a spoiled brat, I can’t tell you off and send you to your room without dinner to think about what you’ve done. You have no clue that my subconscious is caught up in the warfare, because there’s someone somewhere I care about and things don’t go smoothly, and all that sometimes pierce the surface with Resting Bitch Face (BTW it’s a real thing) when I’m momentarily off the guard.
You yourself walk in with persona of your own, maybe compensating lack of control in your life, talking down to me. And that’s fine, I understand, you have to vent that frustration. So you will meet my artificial self that doesn’t bother being verbally belittled by you. I believe you aren’t prick in your real life. You’re just like me. We both put some spikes on so no one can come too close to hurt us, to damage that soft underbelly.
And what if you’re the boss and shit hit the fan? Your peers rely on you, you can’t crumble. So you put the lion’s mask on and cry in your car in parking lot later.
We al have them, carefully mind-crafted, with precision, armours to keep us safe from the outside harsh world. And sometimes keeping in the bay the irrational inside world to project itself out. Have you ever thought about it? When your self doubt starts coming in waves, panic attack racing with the heartbeat, you’re sweating like a pig, but you need to perform.. What do you do? You take few rhythmic breaths into the chest area to physically calm down the heart, you pep talk yourself, put some bold lipstick on and you fake it until you make it.
We all do it. It’s a human trait. Because as humans, we aren’t specialised species, our specialisation is adaptation.