|our kitchen in the early morning, spring 2022|
since my last post, i’ve actually been writing more than i usually would - instead of feverishly tapping out a sentence that feels blazing hot in its realization into my notes app, i’ve been painstakingly fleshing them out and poking and prodding at them a little more. but i’ve finished none of them, and posted none of them, because i read them over and i’m a little horrified at how honest i am in them. or i’ll start talking about one thing and always end up talking about something else at the end, and it’s usually always the same thing i end up converging into. but mostly i’m just too honest.
recently i’ve been reading and re-reading my favourite newsletters - your huckleberry friend, bookbear express. i realized part of why i like them, and part of why i always feel like sighing or crying or a mix of the two when i read them is because they say things that i thought no one else would say, things that i had always kept buried deeply in my intestines because i thought something terrible would happen if i let them escape.
these writers made me feel heard and understood, their gentle dissection of their thoughts a sweet balm to my fear that one day i’ll say all the things i truly think and feel and i’ll lose everything i ever loved. where i use nonsensical allegories to get around saying the thing without actually saying it, they pierce right into the heart of what they mean with crystalline fearlessness, their words unflowery and unflinching and vulnerable. how can you do that?
ava from bookbear express tweeted recently that honesty comes from being made to feel safe enough to be honest, and f tells me he’d sooner face the repercussions of his honesty than bring himself to lie. myself? i think i never stopped lying from the day i was born. little white lies, lies about myself to myself, lies about my boundaries, lies about myself to others. i’ve built a me in this world who is nothing like the me in my notes app. what i usually write about isn’t even all that groundbreaking, but it’s the fact that i’m about to say something out loud that i really mean that is scary.
if someone doesn’t like the lie i made for them, i can change it for them. it’s mutable, and moldable, and all i have to do is hold my hand there and let it spin and spin until you’re looking at something new. but if someone doesn’t like the truth - what do i do then? there’s nothing i can do except to accept that i will never be able to make things for you the way you want them. i can only walk away. what do i do then? will i lose it then? i can never get it back, because i can never change the truth.
all of this is probably really obvious, and it’s why people value telling the truth - because it’s not easy to do so - but it’s painful to admit how much of my current self-security was built up through my lies. i would have to tear everything back down, and i think i’m up too high now to feel like i can do that anymore. but the foundation is rotten, so i guess it’ll come tumbling back down by itself eventually.
true power comes from being able to admit to things that other people don’t, and it’s a lesson i’ll have to learn over and over. if i don’t, i might never be really happy.