I think I lost the "real me" when I was a little lad many years ago. He's probably still in here, buried deep down but I'll never be the person I should have been or be able to replace what was lost.
This will sound really corny, but my heart was so saddened by what you wrote. It made me realize that you have had your share of tribulations as well. I hope you will be able to find him within yourself. At this point I want to write something about how you will find him, or how good the journey to finding him will be, but words fail me at the moment.
I hope my awkward words convey some of what I am trying to say. Basically, I want to scream, "You can find him!" and to tell you that I worry that you won't.
I am so glad to see that someone has had the same thought. I thought I was the only one who noticed that.
...For those who left the borg, has anyone stopped and think, "Who am I really supposed to be apart from the borg?"
...Do you feel like your whole self and identity has been stripped from you?
At one point in my life, I noticed that my identity was tied up with my being a JW and with the company I worked for. I had ceased to talk in terms of "me" and in terms of "us". I spent over the next decade reversing that. I noticed that the JWs tended to make me lose my identity, the uniqueness who is "me".
I fought it, sometimes with a lot of diligence and the assistance of self-help books....even as a JW I knew that the Society discouraged self-help books out of selfish motives...
Who I am is far from perfect and is not the most exciting person in the world. But that person is me, and for the most part I am happy with who I am. Interestingly, it is part of me to not be completely satisfied with who I am. I like to think that part of me helps me to continually improve myself, so that I can accomplish more and be a better person for others.
I am re-finding who I was, and am pretty much restored to the same person. I could use more of the fire, the passion, the insatisible curiousity for life, and belief in humanity that I had as a child, but I am finding that again. Part of that difference is the caution that maturing into an adult puts into a person. Part of that is having to deal with insane situations for too long, but fortunately those situations are gone for the most part.
I really enjoyed this thread, Yizuman.