Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Struggle for Truth

(This post is in response to the Truth chapter in Martha Beck's The Joy Diet.)

My greatest difficulty in this life is with people who have different faces.

Who I am in a job situation is the same person I am if you meet me for a beer. This does not mean that I take my dirty laundry into work environments; that is a different topic all together. It means that I am consistent.

The person I am on this blog is very much who I am in real life. By virtue of the medium, it is not completely who I am, and there are things that are too private to share, but again, if you were to meet me in real life, you would recognize me. (Though Heather was surprised by how chatty I was; I thought I seemed chatty here...)

This conviction of truth telling and being consistent has been hard for some people around me, but those are people, truthfully, whom I do not want in my life.

I have had enough theatrics and lying in my life for many life times.

When you live with parents who insist that every hello or goodbye be accompanied by an "I love you" but then go on to demonstrate through actions the opposite of love, you want nothing but Real Truth in your life.

When you live in a house that is perceived as one way by the outside world but is, truthfully, quite the opposite behind closed doors, you want nothing but Real Truth in your life.

When you live in a larger family system that is comprised of dark secrets and closed doors around every corner, you want nothing but Real Truth, Open Truth, Lighted Truth in your life.

I am not perfect. Every day, I struggle to know my truth more clearly. But it is the struggle that counts.

Lies have cost me too much.

Lies have been force-fed to me and they choke.

I have stomached so many lies in the past that I was unable to digest real food.

Lies have been so embedded in my body that I ache to this day.

I have told my share of lies in order to protect my Fragile Truth.

I have lied about needs and desires, pretending to have neither so that I can't be hurt.

Only recently have I come clean with myself about my desire to dance.

The body never lies, said Martha Graham.

As I dance every single day, other hidden, lied-about desires begin to surface. At this point, they may only pop up momentarily, leaving behind a shadowy longing, a hint toward their resting place.

But these hints, I will gladly follow.

What heart desires do you lie to yourself about?

(Photo & Text Copyright: Christine C. Reed,, 2009)


JFKlaver said...

Your post is amazing! I awoke this morning to the words, "To thine own self be true," running through my head. Then a passing thought, "Do not lie to yourself." So many times I've made compromises for others, doing what they'd have me do instead of what I want. I've been working on this lately. Lies to others or self destroys harmony. This year I've turned away from those who do not support my well-being. I thought I'd feel guilty, but I feel free. Blessings to you. Thanks for sharing and giving others the courage to do the same.

Linnea said...

I swear I sometimes think you crawl inside my head to write these! Though my post on Truth is going to be quite different, during my examinations I pondered many of the same things you discuss here.

Working in corporate communications for years gave me two identities: one called "PR Linnea" and the other one called simply "Linnea," because she's the real me. I get a stomachache now when I think of "PR Linnea," because I cannot stomach the idea of being her anymore. If too many stressful things are going on in my life and I'm busy trying to put out fires or blaming myself for it all, my shoulders, head and neck start aching. I am literally "trying to shoulder too much." If I ignore it? The adrenal alarm bells go off and hello, panic.

Martha Graham was right; the body never lies.

Anonymous said...

Christine, your post today is a zinger...and corrolates to something that is just unfolding it's ugly self to me. I don't feel ready for the truth today though, I feel raw and tender and I just want to curl up and deny it all. So don't mind me if you see me popping in to this particular post from time to time, to remind myself that there can be healing in some truths, but never in lies.


curiouscrow said...

What a deeply moving post. Thank you.

I am eagerly awaiting a copy of this book.

Christa said...

I am aboard! I think that truth and authenticity go hand in hand. I also have had people with many faces in my life and I have found that I don't want them in my life. I have a hard time with fake people. Say what you mean and mean what you say. I have come to realize that many people don't really want to hear the truth, whether that truth is theirs or mine. It's cost me some relationships but in reflection, I am much happier being around people who are who they are. Whether it's "good or bad", being honest and truthful is always the best path.

Julie B said...

Thank you. I need your words today.

onasilentsea said...

Far too many, unfortunately. But I'm trying to recover from them now. Thank you for a moving post this morning.

The Other Laura said...

I've found spending a little time every day with TRUTH to be very revealing, and very very satisfying!

kazumiwannabe said...

Hello! I've been reading your blog for some time - your posts are very thought provoking and I wait for them each day! I'm not commenting usually because it would be too long each time! But I wanted to tell you that I love your blog and your way of thinking. And I especially love your honesty, the way you dare to tell things that are very difficult to be sincere about, your bravery. Your posts are touching, interesting and unique - and they sound true : )- thank you for them!

Ellen said...

I had the same lying type experience with my family...I think lying is a feature of abusive families - they focus on 'looking good' but what's really going on is something different and ugly. Being passionate about living in the light of truth is a great response.

Melita said...

fabulous post! truth - it's the only way to be.

Karen D said...

Thanks for sharing your truth. I also grew up in a house of lies and now fight to find the truth in myself and my life. May you continue to find the truth in yourself and keep shining.