February 5, 2013 by somesauceontheside
This is difficult for me to write. When I was a kid I told lies, lots of lies. Some of them were outrageous and some were benign. In some of the lies I told I created the Dad I wished I had. Of course if any of my friends were to come to my home they would soon find out that the Dad I spoke of was complete fiction. Hence not too many sleepovers in my household.
I had this teacher in the 4th grade, Mr. Johnson, who noticed that I had a flare for fabrication. He was the coolest, he played the guitar and looked like Robert Redford. I wanted him to marry my Mom so he could be my Dad. I did many things to get into trouble so that he could call or meet with my Mom. They both were on to me though…my Mom could sniff out a lie like nobodies business. I always struggled with writing always preferring to tell a tale to writing one. He encouraged me to put it on paper maybe in the hopes I would quiet down in class. He knew I had a lot to say and most likely saw the sadness in me.
I drifted through school after that not really taking an interest in much of anything. In the 9th grade I had another teacher who I still think about. Mrs. Clouse was an English Teacher who had her own style and loved cool music. She had the gift of snark and making Shakespeare interesting. She was another teacher who saw sadness in me and made a point to pay extra attention to me. I think I then realized that it might be ok to be different and fitting in wasn’t going to be tantamount in my life.
Why do we lie? When do we start believe those lies? When does deception and reality get so mixed up you can’t make sense of it anymore? For me my reality for the most part sucked. I had a very difficult time getting close to people and trusting them. That is sort of humorous when you think about it, a liar having difficulty trusting others.
So I have this childhood friend (who I’m sure I’ve lied to on a few occasions) that sent me a message recently. I know Facebook can be a crazy place filled with nonsense but I’ve been able to connect with people and enjoy much of the discourse. She has been very kind and encouraging. Maybe she saw the pain when we were kids and now is able to see something better in me now. Anyway she encouraged me to watch a TED talk which I’m sure many of you have heard of. I have been doing lots of hard work in therapy, group therapy and going to Al-Anon meetings so being vulnerable is becoming a more comfortable place for me.
If you have 20 minutes I encourage you to watch this: The Power of Vulnerability http://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_on_vulnerability.html
If have 20 more minutes I encourage you to watch this: Listening to Shame http://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_listening_to_shame.html
I cried when I watched both of them because they cut so deep with me. Shame played a huge part in the first thirty years of my life. It was even hard to talk to the people closest to me because they had their own pain to deal with. I am so grateful that I have the ability to be vulnerable. Everyday life is a little bit better and I feel like I’m living in high definition.
I’ve had a cold the past four days so I’ve been able to write more than usual. I promise that I won’t be posting this often in the future. I just really wanted to share this.