Speaking your truth sounds simple enough, but it’s not always black and white.
The past, present and future consequences always get wrapped up in our truth. What is the impact? Who will be hurt? What happened the last time? What is happening now? How could this affect me or my family? The truth isn’t always easy to know. Sometimes, it can seem so simple when we tell our stories and yet for years we have lied to ourselves about what happened because the truth was too hard to reconcile.
I have watched my friends and family lie to themselves over the years about friendships, boyfriends, husbands, pain, sports, interests and careers because they couldn’t face the truth. They have stayed in painful marriages, dealt with toxic friends, stayed in jobs that were beneath them and accepted where they were because it was “easier.” We’ve all done it in the name of peace, but whose peace? Certainly, swallowing our own pain, our own truth, has not brought about peace within ourselves. So many of us are depressed, anxious, sleep-deprived, bankrupt or ill because we keep stuffing it all down.
Over the past week, I have watched as one of my daughters struggled with the truth that one of her friends wasn’t the friend she thought she was. To me, the truth was simple and it was clear to see from the outside. To her, there were always reasons this person inflicted pain: breakups, illness, a bad grade, parent struggles, you name it. There was never a good time to address the inequalities in their so-called friendship. We can lie to ourselves about anything to avoid conflict, but the conflict will reside within us until we let it out. In the last few weeks, the hurt had finally bubbled over into something she could no longer ignore, brush off, or excuse. The reality left her angry, sick to her stomach, unable to sleep, and she actually ended up with a terrible cold. Even though she was hurt beyond words, she struggled with sharing her truth.
After much encouragement and realizing she could no longer hold it in, she spoke her truth to this person. It went as expected and although nothing will likely change, everything has changed within her. Yes, there is still hurt, anger and frustration, but it’s on the table. And you know what? She woke up able to breathe the next morning and I don’t think that was a coincidence.
Holding your truth in the darkness will only bring more pain and suffering. Shine a light on your truth. Whisper it, write it, shout it, but get it out and as Oprah said, “a new day will dawn.”
Sunshine & Sarcasm,
Lowi & G