It’s pretty jarring to see someone else exhibit some kind of negative behaviour that you know you yourself are prone to, and last night I had that experience in spades.
This person was pretending that everything that everything was fine and well and healthy and happy, and to their credit (or perhaps not) they were doing an excellent job. But they were betrayed by multiple things around them, and I suspect they knew it, but still the act continued. I wonder how much they thought they were putting on a show for other people, when it was pretty clear they were pretending for their own sake.
It was strange to see it so strongly in someone else. Usually in these situations I gain some amount of clarity on my own patterns and feel the urge to break them, but in this case it was a little different. I felt a lot of empathy for the other person, and a kind of sadness that the world works in such a way that they feel like they have to act like that. Part of me would love to end by saying that I’d love to pretend less, and that I’d love for the world to pretend less, but I think that’s a pretty futile hope.