Shrouded in Layers

I sit under a makeshift canopy. The sides drape to the ground and are made of a multitude of different materials in a variety of soft shades. Sheer cottons, organzas, silks, satins, even lace surround me. The wind blows, shifting the textiles toward me and back away.  From side to side. But never separating enough for me to see outside my cocoon.  I grasp at the curtains, trying to push them apart. Curious what lays beyond the walls.  Becoming frustrated that with each attempt to move one layer away, another covers up the newly made space.  Even my long hair is blowing across my face.  Covering my eyes. Not allowing me to see clearly.

I see shapes beyond where I sit.  A person. A man walking around the perimeter of my tent. I cannot make out his face although he walks calmly. Patiently. Also trying to push the curtains aside. To find the opening that will allow him in.  He seems confident. Doesn’t appear frustrated.  Knowing he’ll find a way through the waves of material covering me.

I feel comforted.  Knowing I’m safe.  Covered by these layers. I have time to think. Time to clear my head.  I want to get out but at the same time hope I can spend an eternity in this haven. I stop trying to find the opening. I believe the man on the outside will find his way through in his own time. Confident I won’t be shrouded in layers forever.

I close my eyes for a moment. Feel the breeze. Let my hair cover my eyes without fighting it. It’s just another layer. One easily swept aside. When I open my eyes, the man has found a way to push aside the outermost layer of my shelter.  My heart skips a beat. Although I feel more vulnerable, I’m glad he’s gotten one step closer.  That sheer, lacy outer layer did little to hide Me anyway.  Unlike many homes with tough outer layers, ones hard to see through and knock down, this home was created for me with translucent walls on the outside. As it was removed the outer layer of Me was revealed. The one that shows the sparkle in my eye. My love of smiling. My tendency to be a good audience and laugh A Lot.

The man gains traction as he’s figured out how to break through the layers. He flips the second film of sheer satin up and over the top of my hut.  His outline becomes clearer. I now see color. His blue striped shirt. Dark jeans. His face still is cloudy but his body familiar.  I relax as he gets closer to where I sit. My sensitive, anxious side is visible. I have lost the layer that covers my insecurities. I hope without this layer that my male friend will continue pushing the other layers aside. Still have interest to see more. Reveal it all.

He sits outside.  Taking a break from the fighting, blowing curtains keeping him from getting closer.  I put my hand up on the curtain. His hand raises to meet mine. I feel the warmth of his strong hand through the layers. The energy I feel gives me reason to push aside one more layer. Realizing that without my help, he’ll never get in. I shove the soft cotton layer aside.  Holding it open so it won’t blow back closed.  He steps forward.  Helping me hold the blowing curtain open. I see his face through the last layer of organza.  Trusting. Welcoming. Understanding.  He can now see my fears. My paranoias. My obsessions. My frequent tears. But he can also see my devotion. My willingness to give all of me. For others. For him. For them.

I ask him if he wants to come in. I scoot over to make room. There’s only that last layer. The one that will let him see it all. I’m not sure if I should trust he’ll adore me the way I need to be adored.  He nods yes. He crawls under the organza leaving that last layer in place so others can not get as close.  He takes my hand. Pushes my hair aside. Now able to see the sparkle in my eye, the smile on my face, the shakiness in my hand, the worry in my brow and my heart on my sleeve.

I wake up.

My blankets kicked off of me. My legs, arms, feet uncovered for all to see. But I feel warm. Comforted. I looked over at the man next to me. Happy knowing that no matter how many layers there are of me he’ll always get through them.  I may have a multilayered personality… but it’s there for all to see.

If they are willing to work hard enough to get there.

This was day three of Creativity Boot Camp.  The creative prompt was Multilayered.  Visit the Creative Boot Camp site to see all of the other wonderful entries.



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9 responses to “Shrouded in Layers

  1. Oooh – I really liked this one Becca! What a lovely testament to the strength of your marriage, and the deepness of your soul 🙂

  2. OH MY GOODNESS. That’s all. I can say no more because I don’t want to take away from this at all. Great job! (But one small thing, I get this, because I’m lucky enough to have a man who does just the same, no matter what).

  3. Beautifully written! I love what you did with this.

  4. “If they are willing to work hard enough to get there.” that’s my favorite line of the entire post. I’m exact same way.

  5. This is lovely. And I’m glad he takes the time – and the effort – to get through all the layers to see the real YOU.

  6. Oh, wow! So, so beautiful!

  7. It’s so easy (natural?) to put up layers between ourselves and others, isn’t it? Thank goodness for the few who can push through them all and see us as we really, truly are (and appreciate and love us in spite of and because of that).

  8. Beautiful use of imagery Becca!

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