Although I operate under the guise of openness on this blog, there are many, many truths I choose (or am told) not to write. Complete transparency is funny that way; I suspect there isn’t such a thing, other than in a person’s heart – and even then, sometimes we don’t want to see ourselves. I know that in my deepest innards, there’s a lot of rocks I prefer not to look under. Either way, I delight in this exercise because it makes me look, and after all the heavy lifting, I feel much lighter. This is why I’m writing here. First, I was inspired by this post, and second, because if we aren’t honest with ourselves, what are we?
So, the things I’m scared to tell you are:
1. I’m disgusted by my writing.
I could be better, I could be better, I could be better! I’m not on par with anything other than average, and that really bothers me, because I don’t feel it’s in my skill set/talent range to go any higher. Or, rather (here we go): I don’t try to step outside the comfort zone of what I know to write, subject and style-wise, so I don’t grow. Which leads me to:
2. I’m terrified to finish my work in progress.
I can’t bear it to suck. I’m stalling because once I finish, my crappy first draft (begun circa 1999) will be in front of me and I have to do something about it: make it better. I’m horror-struck at the idea of not being great. So why go through all the mediocre to get there? Is this because I’m lazy? Unmotivated? I’m not quite sure. Those rocks are too heavy. The searing part is that I see Toots not want to finish artwork or a story she’s writing because one line or word is out of place. She also can’t stand anything less than perfection in her work, and since nothing’s perfect, I fear both of us will give up before undergoing the soul muck it takes to be better.
3. I’m horribly impatient with my children, and my husband.
Too many times I tune them out to focus on what I’m doing. I’m a child when bored, inconvenienced, or irritated. I’m telling you, it’s a horrible trait. I spend many nights in my room with my computer, typing out the overstimulation. I shut down a bit when I’m needed too much. Since you don’t have the option of an off switch when you’re a parent, I better figure this out, and fast. I bring too much stress, tension, and snapitude to too many situations.
4. I believe in the darkest (and lightest) parts of me that I’m not good enough.
Very recently, someone said something about me that made what I feel on the inside (not good enough) real on the outside. In a nutshell, this person’s summation was I was a talentless know-nothing. It’s taken me more than a week to dismiss what he said, and truth be known, I’m still not over it. Refrains of “you can’t do this,” “who do you think you are?” and “stop trying, you’ll never amount to anything” play through my head daily. It’s debilitating, really.
5. Sometimes I think something really bad happened in my childhood to make me this way.
A few years ago I underwent a CAT scan and discovered that my right orbital bone had been broken and never quite healed. A bone shard still protrudes into my sinuses, which really explains my inability to breathe from my right nostril (good to know). I asked my dad about it and he had no recollection of anything that might have led to a splintered eye bone other than a teetering fall from my high chair when I was a baby. And that’s probably what it is, but I also get glimpses of images (a basement, a couch) that I can’t reason away, and have had the same dream: running away from someone through backyards, since I was a kid.
It’s not that I actually BELIEVE something traumatic happened when I was a child, it’s more the freak-out notion that one can squirrel away awful events (my family tells me about the horrifying incident that made me terrified to fly because I don’t remember even one detail of it myself) and not bring them back from the subconscious. So what lurks there, you know?
6. Am I lesbian?
Sometimes I think relationships with girls would be easier and nicer-smelling. I know I’m not (too many guys to love from afar and near, i.e. The Rock) but every now and then the thought crosses my mind. Like, “could I be?” if I really tried?
It’s probably better if we all just signed off now and pretend this never happened. Of course, everyone ever in the world can see what I’ve written here for eons to come. Which goes to show, I’m not the smartest tool in the transparency shed.
(What things are you afraid to say?)
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