Maliciousness Loves Masks

Since I was not fast enough to get rid of a particularly nasty bit of heartlessness, some of your eyeballs were exposed to the putrid words left by certain excuses for human beings who read “Make Yourself Fortunate”. I wish to request (of those of you who read the comments) that you don’t share the persons’ names. No, I’m not trying to protect those slugs. I am not that nice. But I believe that sort of people is best ignored. We can—and should—remember the lessons carved by their lack of humanity. But… like Gunny Highway says to Profile in Heartbreak Ridge, “Don’t give the prick the satisfaction” of receiving any claimable attention.

I won’t share all they said, but here is some of it: “Recognizing you’re as weak as everyone else will help you in the long run. No one can fake forever. I’m sorry that you had to get cancer to learn but better late than never. I’ll pray for you. But that’s not always enough. Pray for your own salvation. If you accept we are here to serve His will I know He will listen. Sometimes we need to fall to remember our place.”

The rest includes so much gloating that for a second, I was certain this person was joking. But the punchline never came. Nope, not even after I reread it a couple of times. Once I deleted the comment and emailed those of you who raged at the idiot on my behalf, I did a lot of thinking, tried to figure out what could motivate a soul to act in such a way towards another. At first, I thought, It’s fear. [This individual] is just scared. Cancer (even someone else’s cancer) can terrify people to the point they stop using their brain. But a follow up message, freed me from my unjustified attacked of kindness. “Afraid to let others tell you how they really feel about you? That won’t help you. Maybe you need to ask yourself why you got the cancer in the first place. I’m not your enemy. I’m trying to help you.”

If you are both amused and disgusted by the last bit, you aren’t alone. But don’t let it trouble your heart or mind. It is not troubling mine. On the contrary, I’m grateful. You see, one of the eyeballs who got to read the stinky tripe before I could delete it is the child of one of the tripe-spewers, someone who has been trying to sweet-talk me into allowing her parent back into my life since the first day I said goodbye.

The most devastating part about this whole thing is that “Make Yourself Fortunate” was not even inspired by my experience alone. It was the result of a conversation I had with someone who is having a terrible time dealing with the physical effects of her breast cancer diagnosis. We were waiting to get fitted for lymphedema sleeves, when she burst into tears. I didn’t know her, but she was sobbing so violently that I hugged her anyway. She clung to me. And I had to bite my cheek and tongue not to cry with her (when I cry, I bleed through my nose… and have problems breathing). She said that therapy isn’t working, that her family and friends don’t get it, that she feels so alone. She asked me what I did to keep from going crazy. “You’re young”, she said. “They said it’s harder for me because I’m young. But you’re young too.”

I can’t quite remember everything I said to her. I mostly rambled… and patted her back. But I let her know that I’ve been sick for a long time and I think that readied me for this. Also—and I suspect this might not have helped a whole lot—I told her that I’ve been known to enjoy a good brawl. Cancer might not be something we can always defeat, but we can drop him on his ass for a round (or more) even if we lose teeth, boobs, hair, and friends we thought we had… in the match.

My response to her fed most of the previously cited poem, especially this bit:

…misfortune claims [you]
craft wild new ways
to show your teeth—
make yourself fortunate
again, again, again…


I almost didn’t publish this post—I didn’t like some of the energy fueling it. Then, I remembered a poem bit I wrote three weeks or so ago… and changed my mind:

Malice wears masks
to keep from the looking glass
the worst of its rot.

The thought behind those three lines reminded me just how important it is to share certain terrible truths: there are too many people out there who use religion, social norms, and an individual’s state of mind to manipulate him or her into feeling like less. We can’t allow that kind of scum to think that we don’t know what they’re up to; or, that we can’t fight them. We can (and will) fight and defeat them! Together, we must show them that their self-righteousness won’t be allowed to suck the light out of our wonder and fierceness and hope and hunger… for life. We can see under their masks, can’t we? And we know that their sort is weak, weak, weak… even if their tongues can be dangerous (if we don’t cut them off). So… chop-chop-chop to you, despicable scum… first you choke, choke, choke… and then you are gone. 😉


My mastectomy incision starts at the center of my chest and ends about an inch into my axilla. The armpit stitches are uncomfortable and… painful. But the mastectomy pillow my Mother-in-Law crafted for me makes it all so much easier. The fabric is super gentle on my traumatized flesh and the pillow keeps the skin on skin (& hair, did I mention that I can’t shave?) contact from torturing me. Yay! for soft miracles.

That’s the thing about cancer and other horrors. They don’t only bring curses into our lives, they bring blessings too: they provide new reasons for us to love people we already loved, they help us start loving people we were not even sure we liked, and yes… troubling times of this sort help us get rid of maliciousness that pretends to be kindness. As Audre Lorde suggests, in The Cancer Journals, cancer can be “another weapon, unwanted but useful.” My armor keeps growing… stronger.


53 thoughts on “Maliciousness Loves Masks”

  1. I wish I could say that it is unbelievable that someone was at rude and mailicious, but then I just look around and see it everywhere. Your place? Who did they think they were? They do not know you or they would know that your place is anywhere you damn say it is! I hope you cackled long and hard as you blocked them from your feed, your blog, your life! You are such an inspiration, such a role model! I feel so fortunate that our paths crossed. Love you to bits!

  2. Good for you Magaly! It is fortunate for that person I did not read the post. The part I did read above infuriated me. I detest stupid, pious acting people being malicious under the guise of friendly advice.

  3. I missed that nasty post, and I’m glad I did. I would have come unglued on the person, and it would have been ugly. I don’t come unglued often, but when I do, I reduce myself to a hateful ridiculous idiot. I am so moved by your tale of the other patient. My heart hurts for her pain! You are so strong, courageous, and caring! …Ig, and I love the pillow. Bless your mom-in-law! Love to you Magaly 💜

  4. You know I have the patience of one of the Queen’s musketeers, so it’s likely for the best I didn’t see it, or I would have typed out a more expletive rich version of “Have at thee, vile varlet!” But I did indeed hear about it.

    I make it a point not to knock other’s faith. I’ve seen how faith really can make a difference in someone’s life, even if it’s a faith that doesn’t work for me. I don’t begrudge others that – rather, I encourage it! People ought to be able to find strength in whatever resonates strongly in their hearts. But to take someone’s personal challenges as a moment to proselytize? And not so subtly concern troll at the same time??? Have at thee, shitastic fuckface!!!

    The poems express that a lot better than I did. 😀

  5. It seems to me that humanity has lost the ability to filter itself. Manners have completely vanished and I struggle all the time with what to put in social media. It’s like shopping during the Christmas holiday season. Everyone is so focused on themselves and where they have to get or what they want to buy that they forget there are other people out there trying to do the same.
    It’s also why I spend so much time alone. I just don’t like people that much anymore. (Present company excluded, of course!) 🙂
    love & blessings

    • I’ve always preferred truth to manners, if they are competing against each other. I think some people have become more vocal, so their horrid ways are less concealed. That makes too many rather unlikable. I’m very glad I and you aren’t one of them. 🙂

  6. I missed that post and it is probably a good thing I did. I do not care for those judgemental, holier than thou types that feel they have the “right” to spew their close-minded dribble.

    You are by far the MOST courageous person I know and your strength is one of the things that makes me in awe of you. You have too many who love you and would happily run that cretin out of town on a rail.

    Keep going, Dear Magaly! You give hope to those of us who falter more than we would wish …

    • I just laughed right now. Mostly because I told a dear friend, and one of the people who saw the comment before I deleted it, “I’m just glad Vickie didn’t see this. If she had, computers might’ve exploded”.

  7. The most positive thing about my illness last year was the opportunity it gave me to become a part of the most remarkable people’s lives for a short while, to learn what true vocation is, and that it takes more than medicine to heal the body.. but there were also those death hounds, trying to lap up some of my pain to make themselves feel more important. The fact that this troll you describe actually spilled her brand of poison on your space, more than riles me, but it is yet another opportunity for you to inspire us all.

  8. Yuck, there’s always vermin creeping out of the muck when someone is struggling. And it sounds as if they did not really know you at all. I hate people who only wait for their acquaintances to fail … don’t they have better things to do with their lives? Like, achieve something they might actually boast about except for knowing how to pray? (They do need it, I’ll give them that.)

  9. Looks like you cut out another cancer that was causing a problem, well done Ms Wicked, both deleted from your life… I did not read, nor do I wish to read, or know, of the deleted, defeated cancer, suffice to know, it sounds like others pounced in and helped you finish it off. Will put sabre back in sheath… xox

  10. That pillow is so sweet of your Mom in law. The color reminds me that I’ve seen my first passion flower ever at the Ren fairgrounds yesterday and it instantly made me think of you.

  11. The ugliness that lives in our world in the hearts of stupidity zealots comes out when they think they can score a win for the dumb ass squad. Supreme witchy wonder woman a bazillion vs. dumb as squad zero. Way to fight the good fight and vanquish a really pathetic human.
    I love your kindness and generosity. It is a lovely part of the whole package that is you. Your light shines so bright.
    xoxo Oma Linda

  12. NOTHING can dull your shine, Magaly. I have read that people say the DAMNDEST THINGS at difficult times. Yes, forget it, let’s not give it a moment’s attention. But OMG. (You look ravishing in your purple and spots, kiddo.) How thoughtful of your mother-in-law to make you a special pillow. Now THAT is an idea that could be patented. I am glad you share EVERYTHING. That is what this forum is for.

  13. You’d know f I’d seen it…and their follow up response isn’t even remotely amusing to me. You my darling child*by another mother* are a blessing to ANY God in existence, put on this Earth to help and heal others. That piece of self-righteous shit will find “their” God probably frowns on such hateful behaviour in His name as much as the rest of us do and is in for a nasty shock come judgement day. Block that garbage out of your life completely and keep that angelic *if a bit mischievous* smile beaming out sunshine XXX

  14. I didn’t see it either. people like that are evil and they hide their evilness in religion. their concern is barely concealed gloating…see I told you, you heathen, and you wouldn’t listen and now you have been brought down by cancer and stop acting so brave and strong and come to my god for healing. but who the hell wants to worship a god that gives people cancer to open their eyes.

  15. It’s a damn good thing I didn’t see that post. I have had religious innuendo and trolling from time to time during our ordeal, but absolutely *nothing* that clueless and evil. As Rommy said above, while I am not a believer myself, I know that for many people their faith is a positive thing that helps get them through this difficult and inexplicable world, but for too many others, it’s an excuse to use God to justify their own slimy agendas of bringing people down and lording it over them. I have no patience for that sort of hypocrisy, May whoever it is find him or her self surrounded by people exactly similar whenever trouble strikes them. Then they can see what kind of “help” they are offering. Your poems on the subject are on a higher spiritual plane than my anger, and a pleasure orf craft to read. I’m so glad you NEVER let the bastards get you down, dear Magaly.

    • I’ve often wondered what these sort of people get out of this kind of behavior. I can never get an answer, not one that makes sense… I wonder how they live with it. Then again, perhaps that sort of wondering is a waste of time… and time is too precious to waste on worthless bastards.

  16. Omg I just did a whole para and accidentally deleted it. NOW I am REALLY mad. Stop laughing you witchy woman!
    So to repeat…sort of…its good the mirror cannot see the stinking rot beneath which spews from that persons vile lips. I hope she finds the mental help she obviously needs. She is to be pitied. Next time just ignore her because she FEEDS off your reply and without your response she is nothing! NOTHING. A void!
    Beautiful picture with a lovely soul shining through.💕

  17. I seem to have missed the “particularly nasty bit of heartlessness”. The cruel insensitivity some people are capable of leaves me speechless and dismayed. I’d be sorry and appalled that you were going through this at the best of times, but to be dealing with this during an especially tough time is just dreadful. The perpetrator should be thoroughly ashamed. And their Jesus would be ashamed of them too! I am not a religious person, but this is an example of spiritual philosophy being twisted and perverted into the worst kind of ugliness. 🙁

    But on the flip side, your MIL’s mastectomy pillow is just the sweetest, kindest gesture ever! ❤

    As always, sending you love and healing wishes, Lady M! ❤ ❤ ❤ xo

    • I suspect Jesus suffers of severe headaches from all the head shaking and face-to-palming.

      I keep on grinning at the pillow. My MIL made it so quickly. And I got to help, I stuffed it and added the button. So, it feels like a talisman of sorts. Sweet, kind, powerful. I do love it.

      Love and healing and some wild tickles to you, Mistress Emma.

  18. Such cruelty in the name of kindness. Just blind from the vileness inbued in her heart. Really wonder how she lives with herself. Anyway, your strength comes through, which is (I imagine) not as easy as you make it look. Keeping you in my thoughts…Love

  19. You look so adorable! You are so cute! Your mother-in-law is a smart cookie! What a brilliant idea!
    Magaly, I am so sorry, for what this person wrote to you! I don’t even want to concentrate on them!
    I am going to concentrate on you and tell you once again, how wonderful you look!! Sending you so much love!
    Big Hugs 🙂

  20. Hello gorgeous soul…you are always so inspiring Magaly! I loved that you shared all of this, and agree with all you have written…yes yes yes!! Wow, so strange, but people can truly be so absurd and bizarre!(hugs) You are amazing..and you have so many of us in your powerful corner shining the kind of love and magic people like that know nothing about.

    Your poems..always spark so much power and deep wisdom. shine on..keep shining.
    I think about you every day..and hope you can feel the love and magic I shine up in the ethers for you..thank you for always being you..a wildly magical witchy, inspiring woman.

  21. Poor Jesus’d be turning in his grave, if he hadn’t risen from it already! So much vileness is committed in his name. I didn’t see this instance, I’m glad to say, and am only just seeing this post about it. Bravo, you, for seeing what was what and refusing to tolerate it. Yes it is good that you posted this; it’s inspirational (as you always are). And oh, what a lovely mother-in-law! xxxx

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