February 20, 2007–Thursday (non-italic text within parentheses are current notations)
Yesterday’s Truth (sometimes I was a little behind, but that doesn’t mean I wasn’t smacked with the truth that day, right? You’ll see how I go along and the lapses turn into weeks, then months. Here I am, over eight years later and not even a quarter of the journal is used. That says more about my commitment as a writer to a single project than to the concept of a daily truth): IF YOU HIDE FROM THE TRUTH, IT WILL NOT COME FIND YOU.
Truth is funny that way. If you don’t want to face it, find it, see it, it won’t make you. The whole time my mother and sister were here I could live numb. As I ate I could believe I was eating all those rich foods and desserts, telling myself I’d pick up once they left. I didn’t have to cry over missing Victor because I wasn’t letting the truth in that I am still completely devastated over his absence. Sure, once in a while I’d let my mind wander to the land of truth, but when it started interfering with my numbness, I kicked it right out. I won’t look at pictures of myself or even allow a picture to be taken–I can’t face the truth of how big I am. I don’t want to try on pants. For a while I’ve been avoiding the truth at all costs. In some ways I still I am. The truth about whether I’ll ever be able again to have sex with someone. The truth that I will probably never see Victor again. The truth that he wasn’t in my life for what I wanted–thought I NEEDED–him to be there for. The truth is hard. It ain’t pretty. That’s why it’s called the ugly truth. The naked truth. The hidden truth. Because if you live your life hiding from the truth, it will not come find you.
This concept, this truth, could certainly start a debate. Most believe you cannot hide from the truth. I still firmly believe that indeed you can. Hiding from it doesn’t mean you don’t believe it isn’t there. You know it’s there. That’s why you’re hiding from it. Just look at the success of Dr. Phil. It’s a virtual parade of one person after another hiding from the truth. “My husband beat me the first day we met. I married him two years later and now we have three kids and he beats us all. I thought it would get better.” No you didn’t. You hid from the truth. Alcoholics know they’re alcoholics. They run from that truth until it kills them or they decide to face the truth. Overeaters aren’t hungry; they’re stuffing down that truth. All of us, in varying degrees, hide from the truth. Some of us are so good at it, we convince ourselves we’re also hiding it from others. We look these people in the eye, tell our little fabrications, and hope they won’t look back at us with disbelief. Worse yet, pity. That look that says, What are you hiding from, darling? The truth. The good news is, it sucks so bad at playing hide and go seek, that if you choose to play the game, you’ll always come out the winner. Now as for what that says about winning at life . . . I think you know the truth.
NOTE: I originally wrote the draft of this entry back in April and I have since changed my mind. I now am of the belief that you can’t hide from the truth. It will come find you, Beautiful Babies. It will hunt you down where you hide, drag you kicking and screaming into the light and it will have the final say. It will say it with the pants that are cutting off your circulation. It will reaffirm it with the pregnancy of the wife of the man you wanted for yourself. And it will scream it with death while you were trying to convince yourself everything was just fine. Don’t try to hide from the truth. Face it head on. Better to confront it than to have it creep up on you at the most inopportune moments. Because that is when it will get you.
The good note: the truth is a living thing and is ever-evolving. You don’t want to face the truth, then change it.