Many play pretend to survive and get through difficult circumstances. We brush things under the carpet. We turn a blind eye. We no longer talk about it. Deny. Deny. Deny. We live two lives.
One is the pretend life that we present to others, Facebook, and even ourselves. It is much more comfortable than living in the real painful, messy, chaotic life that is ours.
Two worlds: one that is denied and one that is created as an illusion of perfection – “everything is fantastic”. We wear two faces: our true self and our false self.
It takes tremendous energy to keep these two worlds separate so they don’t touch, get revealed or collide. We seek out ways to have our illusion mirrored back to us. We seek out normalcy in any way we can; selfies of us doing activities, bragging about ________. We breathe deeply and feel safer and attempt to put distance between us and our fears.
There is a truth in AA, “you are as sick as your secrets”. In other words the bigger the gap in our two lives, the more we pretend, the sicker we get.
My occupation has been joked about as “shrinks”. No, we don’t shrink you or your head (honest – no measurements are taken). However, for good mental health we must shrink the pretend world (false self) and incorporate this hidden secret world with our true self. We shine a light on it, embrace it and claim the not-so-perfect parts of our lives. We search out solutions, set goals, create a plan and get busy claiming our real, authentic self.
That is what I call relief and freedom. A life saved. A life worth living. A life filled with hope. A life free of perfection and, at times, laughable. But it is our life! No more lying, covering up, justifying, or minimizing. It is what it is. Blue is blue, black is black and joy is joy!
“To thine own self be true” is a recovery slogan found on most coins given for clean time. I am forever grateful for recovery, truth and being authentic at all times. No secrets, lies, or hiding. God, I thank you for your grace, mercy, and forgiveness.
Stay cool everyone.