The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. That is how this whole thing started, really. They kept telling me over and over, “Secrets will keep you sick,” until quite frankly I hated that sentence. I didn’t really understand what they wanted from me. I thought, it wasn’t the secrets that were making me sick, it was the truth that was threatening to destroy me. So why would I want to bring that out into the open? And anyways, the opposite of “secrets keep you sick” is what? The truth will set you free? Well that just sounds too good to be true if you ask me. No, not MY truth… and what if the truth hurts? What if it is a sad truth? An ugly truth? The naked truth? (CRINGE).
Follow me back in time for a minute…
As kids we love to play this game, you know the one, Truth or Dare. It is a game that either excites you or terrifies you or maybe a mix of both. It gets your adrenaline pumping. Your curiosity is peaked. Everyone is clamoring as you all gather around to begin the game. Until someone asks, “Truth… or … Dare?”
We all know that “Dare” is the so-called better answer. The cooler answer. The braver choice. But why? You know that if you say “Truth” there will be a collective “Boooo!”. It is seen as the weaker choice. The safer choice. Maybe the easy way out. You are no fun if you choose the truth. The group might even try to punish you with the truth by asking you something shameful, backing you into a corner. That’s what you get for picking “Truth”. I realize it might just be a silly childhood game, but it really shows what we are taught to value in this world. Boldness over authenticity. It is decidedly braver and more acceptable to do something bold on the outside than to do something vulnerable to the inside. But I am going to argue that it actually takes a lot more courage to speak and share your truths.
We think of the truth as being stagnant. Unchanging. But what if truth can be transformational. So much more than just the facts. It wasn’t a matter of simply telling my dirty little secrets. Truth makes space for living breathing stories. My stories. True stories. The me living the stories. The me now witnessing my stories. The me speaking the stories. The me sharing the stories with you. And trust me, there is nothing easy or safe about the truth. Unlike the “Dare”, there is no band-aid approach to the truth. For me, it has been a very slow unfolding.
“I want to unfold. I don’t want to stay folded anywhere, because where I am folded, there I am a lie.” –Rainer Maria Rilke
What happens when we start unfolding our truths?
We see the beauty in ‘opening’ all around us. We forget that we are no exception to this. We are like the seed cracking open, only to then grow and bloom. We are like the sky opening up to reveal light. Even a woman’s body opens up to give birth to a baby, to life. We accept the pain and messiness and discomfort and fear and uncertainty that comes with that journey because we know that there is great beauty to be found as well. So why not for truth?
I DARE you to join me this journey for truth. To open yourself up. To let your truth out and to let the biggest TRUTH in.