Don't be fooled by me. Don't be fooled by the face I wear. For I wear a thousand masks I am afraid to take off, and none of them are me. I give you the impression that I'm secure, that confidence is my name and coolness my game. That the water's calm and I'm in command, and that I need no one. But don't believe me, PLEASE! My surface may seem smooth, underneath I dwell in confusion, in fear, in aloneness. But I hide this. I panic at the thought of my weakness and fear being found out. That's why I frantically create a mood to hide behind, a calm, sophisticated front to shield me from the glance that knows But such a glance is my salvation and I know it. It's the only thing that can assure me of acceptance and love. I'm afraid you'll think less of me, that you'll laugh. Laughter would kill me. So I play my game, my desperate pretending game, with a front of "Having it together" and a trembling child within. And so my life becomes a front. I chatter to you in a cool tone: I tell you everything that's nothing and nothing of what's everything, of what's crying within me. So when I go into my routine do not be fooled by what I am saying. PLEASE! Listen to what I'm not saying. I dislike the phony game I'm playing. I'd like to be real and spontaneous, and me. You've got to hold out your hand even when it may seem to be the last thing I want or need. Only you can call me into aliveness. Each time you're kind and gentle, and encouraging. Each time you try to understand because you really care, My heart begins to grow wings, small wings, very feeble wings. I want you to know how important you are to me, How you can be a creator of the person that is me if you choose to. But it will not be easy for you. A long time of feelings inferior builds strong walls. The nearer you approach me, The harder I may strike back. It is irrational, but I am irrational. I fight against the very things I cry out for. But I am told that love is stronger than walls. And there lies my hope. Please try to beat down those walls with firm hands, But with gentle hands, for a child is very sensitive. Who am I , you may wonder? I am someone you know very well. I am every newcomer you meet.