My girlfriend said she would never share the kind of things I share on my blog. She was referring to the intimate parts of life most people keep to themselves. I call those my truths. Whether we share them or not, our truths are hard won. A truth can be a life-altering tragedy or a single word, spoken in anger, but they alter the beats of our heart. They etch their way into our memories, and our bodies bare some of their scars. For most of my life, I kept my truths to myself, but a few years ago, I decided if one person reads my story and has an ah-ha moment, then I will have done something good.
NEVER BEING LOVED AND NEVER FINDING OUR VOICE ARE TWO OF LIFE’S GREATEST TRAGEDIES.
After my first husband died, I wrote a fiction book that got me a well-known agent. Before she found a publisher for it, she was hit with a personal crisis. While she put her clients on hold, I stepped back and decided my story—even wrapped in fiction—wasn’t in anyone’s best interest to tell. I took my manuscript back from the agency. While I may never share the truths behind the fiction I wrote, I discovered that what I’ve experienced in real life deserves better than a make believe story. I also discovered that our truths are where our power and our voice resides. Once we’ve found them, no one can take them away from us.
Some of us never find our voice. Some of us never learn how to say “no,” or how to standup for what we believe or need from a partner. Never being loved and never finding our voice are two of life’s greatest tragedies.
If we allow ourselves to learn from the things that have happened to us, this knowledge gives us the power to keep from making the same mistakes again and again. Without our truths, we marry the wrong men; work at the wrong jobs and pretend life is alright, when it’s not. Our history helps us change how we look at life. It’s what molds us and makes us into the people we become tomorrow. Our truths make us more compassionate and allow us to forgive—not just those who’ve wronged us—but ourselves. If you believe in God, our truths are those things we will recount when we stand before Him.
Are you honest with yourself about your life and your truths? Are you introspective and have you learned from them, or do you continue to run through life’s twists and turns with blinders on?
At age 61, I think I finally know myself pretty well, but it took awhile and travel on some roads perhaps better not taken.
Oh, my! How many wrong roads have I taken? At the time, I thought I was an idiot, but in reality, I would have been an idiot if I hadn’t reached this age and not learned from them.
Beautiful Brenda. Finding our own voice then having the courage to live it is liberating beyond words. I think that who we are “being” often has more of an impact than what we are “doing.”
That’s great insight: “…who we are “being” often has more of an impact than what we are “doing.” It makes me wonder how many of us stay busy, doing, so we don’t have to be?
This is perfect — and it really speaks to me today. Thank you.
I’m glad, Paula. Thanks for reading!
I agree completely. Keeping truths, feelings, realities, inside will eat you up. It is freeing to let them out.
It’s cheaper than therapy! LOL!
I don’t think I believe in God. But I believe in truth. Love your post!
This has caused great tension between me and my sister though she admits I say good things about our parents and leave her out of it. It’s my truth I’m talking about. My ex husband finally agreed to be in my writing because though I might say some “bad” things about him I say much worse about myself and he has to be in the book as the people or person you fall in love with in your teens and know throughout your life—they shape who you become.
Five people can witness the same event, or live in the same house, and each one sees it through their lens. It’s not surprising you and your sister view things differently. It doesn’t make one view better than the other; just different.
Both of my husbands died. One shaped me in my early years; the other saved me. I’m glad I don’t have to worry about their response to what I write about them. That’s gutsy, girl.
This hits so close to home. Before publishing them, I put my blog posts through a filter as to whether they might hurt someone or, even worse, start a lawsuit however unfounded. I’ve learned the hard way not to suppress certain truths that must be told. It’s absolutely the case that if the post helps one person, it’s done its job. Thanks for the encouragement to be what I want to be and not to be afraid to express my sentiments. xx
If we learned early in life how to express ourselves–better–and acknowledge things that aren’t working for us, we’d be less stressed, have healthier immune systems and some of us might not have had breast cancer. You think?
One of the most freeing things I’ve done was when I chose to share my on-going bout with depression with my church family. While a lot of people came up to me afterwards and said, “You’re so brave!,” others said, “I suffer from depression, too, but I could never share that with anyone.” I feel like I’ve helped de-stigmatize mental illness, and I’ve opened a door allowing people to share their truth’s with me. It was frightening, but then, what “leap of faith” isn’t?
I imagine you shared because you felt safe with your church family. I do with mine. We humans are an interesting species. We act like we’ve got everything together until someone we trust and/or someone in a safe environment gives us permission to let our walls down. You did a great thing, because they’ve shared their truths with you, and who knows what might come of it? I shared a lot with my church family and on BreastCancerSisterhood when I had breast cancer. It was healing and therapeutic for me and so many others. That leap? That’s why they call it “faith.” Brava!
I agree wholeheartedly, Brenda! Bless you!!!
Still looking, still searching but never idle in my quest. Always love your words Brenda! Blessings, Cindy
I’m so happy to see you here! Think of you so often and wonder how you’re doing. We walked a similar path after Mark and James died. Oh, Goody! You’re here! Do you still have your blog?
Yes, Brenda! I still have my blog. Most of the time I’m posting about my grand kids or decor stuff around the house. Once in a while I get serious, but I’ve tried to keep it fairly light! I have been reading your 1010 and am so happy that you continue to build your new life. Sending big Hugs to you! Cindy
Beautiful Brenda! Living our truths is easier the older I get. If sharing mine can help or inspire just 1 woman, I am happy!
It does get easier the older we get. I now understand how many older women get so feisty and crusty… Really hoping to avoid both as I live my truths. Hope you’re still having a fabulous trip!
Brenda, I’m learning this right now in a big way. Thanks for the encouragement. Lovely piece of writing.
Thank you. Our truths are often our compass. Listen and learn from them, and they’ll rarely steer us in the wrong direction.
Thank you. xoxox
Oh Brenda, what a post! So powerful and so true. One of my sisters doesn’t really get why I’d want to share personal stories but I agree with you, they’re our truths. Besides, sometimes I don’t feel like I have a choice, I feel so compelled to write about certain things – although I would never write anything that I think would hurt someone. I try to write from a place that I hope might possibly help even one other person, and that’s enough. And the more I share the more I connect with others, but I also forge a deeper understand of myself. I started thinking I was going to be writing a style blog, but it’s turning into a personal development one! Inspiring post, as always. xx
I am brutally honest with myself and others. I have no filters in my life, especially on my mouth – I blame this on my Italian roots. 😉 – I appreciate brutal honesty, most don’t. I often get accused of being crash, brash, blunt, and I’m always puzzled by this. Where I come from – Detroit – we call it honestly…
Hi Girlfriend, I just now found your comment. I, too, have gone through life without a filter on my mouth, and like you, I like someone who’s honest and doesn’t tippy toe around what they really want to say. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve become a better judge of who can “hear” that kind of honesty and to soften the edges a bit. You and I would get along just great. Brenda
It’s very hard to expose ourselves in our writing—akin to owning up a vein and bleeding all over the page. I guess that’s why I usually stick to humor—it’s a distraction from the other things that I’m not always comfortable talking about.
Hi, Just found your comment. Wow! That’s insightful on your part. Think I’ve let go of all fears and self-consciousness on just about every level, which is probably not a good thing. Brenda
I just discovered recently that facing the truth is the best healer of all. I had been running from all my mistakes and hiding them away. Then one night I decided to get it over with. I wish I had done that very thing long, long ago. I sleep better and am healthier than ever. Isn’t it sad that we waste so much time avoiding things and then still have to take the time to deal with it all. Sigh. The good news is I have moved on.
Be well and thank you for the comment on my blog.
Why does it take so long for us to reach this point? Sometimes I think wisdom, and just about everything, is wasted on the young! xox, Brenda