Monday, July 28, 2014

Honesty is My Way of Life


I consider myself to be a very honest person.  Some would even say "honest to a fault", but what does that mean? I'm too honest?  Is that such a bad thing?

I'm not going to sit here and pretend that I never lie... because, well, that would be a lie in itself.  Just a few days ago I told Jelly we'd bake cookies together later that afternoon, and then we didn't.  And Jelly quickly accused me of lying to her.  Something as minor as that still made me feel bad, though.  I didn't mean to lie.  I had the intention when I said what I did, but it just didn't work out.  We made the cookies the next day, and everything was good.  But she was right, my original statement was a lie.

There are other small lies that I've uttered quite often such as "I'll do it in a minute" knowing I probably won't do it.  I've said "Yeah, that's fine" in agreement to an unimportant decision (like where to eat for dinner or what time to meet for something) even though I might want to do something else.  I've responded to the question "How was your day?" with a quick "Good" even though it was one of the worst days of my life, or I felt anything but good.  

Everyone lies.

But, there are certain lies I believe to be forgivable. Like the little statements I use.  I'm not intending to harm anyone.  Important decisions aren't being questioned.  I am using those words because it doesn't really matter one way or the other.    

If no one is going to be permanently scarred, or will hate me forever, or the result is pretty minuscule, then I don't see the harm in telling little white lies.  Everybody does it, it's just who we are as humans.

But, there's a BIG difference between being an honest person and being a liar.  I may be honest to a fault, like some people say I am, but I want to be able to lay my head down at night with a clear conscience.  I want to be able to know that if someone has asked for my absolute honesty, I have given it to them... regardless if it's what they wanted to hear.  

And that's where I think my little problem comes from being "honest to a fault".  It usually stems from someone that's asked my honest opinion, I've given it, it's not what they want to hear, and then they become hurt.  Well, I understand that sometimes people aren't really looking for an honest answer, they are just looking for affirmation that they are making the right decisions, or that someone agrees with them.

Unfortunately, for them, that's not who I am.  If you ask me for honesty, honesty is what you'll get.

Over the years, I've used my honesty trait as a measure of who I can trust, who my real friends are.  Because, really, the people that I care about the most and that care about me accept my honesty.  They understand it.  They are able to hear the truth and, regardless of any stinging it may cause, know that I am being honest because I care. It's just who I am.  I'm not a sugar-coater.  I am not someone that will only feed someone what they want to hear just because I know it will make them feel better, even though I know it will end up hurting them in the end.  I use my honesty as a way of telling those close to me that I care enough to bring to light problems I see, concerns I have, and feelings that will get trampled on if I'm not honest with them from the get-go.

I've seen relationships fall apart because people just don't know how to be honest.  And, I'm talking friendships, partnerships, couples...all types of relationships.  If you can't be completely honest with the people you love the most, then how do you expect that relationship to last?

I build the relationships in my life on honesty.  If someone can't be honest with me, they are not someone I can trust.  Without trust, there is nothing.  

I might say I'm fat and ugly.  And while I love hearing someone disagree with me and tell me that I'm beautiful, I only really want to hear it if they truly believe it.  I would much rather someone say "Well, then get off your butt and do something about it" then try and convince me that "I'm fine the way I am". 

I might ask if an outfit makes me look bad.  And while I love hearing that I look great no matter what I wear, I really want to hear the truth.  If the outfit looks hideous, tell me.  

I might try and talk to someone and make a new friend.  And while I love making new friends, if the person can't stand me and has no interest whatsoever, I'd much rather hear that than wasting my time and energy on something that's not meant to be.  

Because at the end of the day...that's EXACTLY how I'm going to be.  

People I truly care about deserve my honesty.  

I would much rather have someone a little upset with me that I'm too honest, than to be in a situation where I allowed the hurt to unfold knowing I supported it (against my better judgement).  People tend to forgive easier when they face a truth, rather than face a lie.

One of my favorite quotes is "A truth hurts only once, but a lie hurts each time it is remembered".  

That's kinda how I try and live my life.  I weigh the hurt that could unfold.  Is it better to hurt someone once, or hurt them each and every time they are faced with the lie I told?

I think that because I'm such an honest person with others, I have a hard time confronting my own fears and feelings.  I often question if others will give me the same level of honesty that I'm willing to give.  I often trust too much, or not enough.  I hear things that I want to believe, but can never shake the niggling feeling that the words aren't genuine.  

The past few weeks, I've had to confront a lot of emotions that I was unsure about.  Have I really forgiven?  Do I really understand the decisions that were made?  Am I really OK with opening up the Pandora's box of events that may unfold?  Am I still dwelling on the past, even a little?  

What I'm currently going through is scary, and exciting, and crazy, and amazing. I've spent many nights sitting up until all hours trying to figure everything out.  I'm no beginner at having my emotions scattered everywhere, but it's important for me to try and contain them... organize myself figure out what I'm truly feeling.  Be honest with myself.

Thankfully, for the most part, I feel good about everything that's unfolding.  I'm happy for Peanut, I support her decisions and will stand by her for as much or as little as she's ready for.  I don't think I'll ever shake the niggling feeling that this could turn out with her getting hurt, in some way, but with everything that's happened already... I don't see too much bad coming out of it.  One thing that I've always promised her is that, when the time came, I would stand by her in wanting to reach out to her father.  I can voice my concerns, I can stay in the loop with everything that's happening, and I can control the a point.  

I have come to the conclusion that I really have moved on with everything I had pent up 15 years ago.  I've accepted and forgiven.  I am able to start over, see how things go, and roll with the punches.  



I have no way of knowing what tomorrow, next week, next month, or next year may bring.  I have no way of knowing if this new journey will bring all rainbows and unicorns or bolts of lightning and storms.  

But, one thing everyone involved can count on is my honesty.  I will be honest.  I will call it like I see it.  The words that come out of my mouth will be the truth.  

Good truth or bad truth.  

I just hope and pray that those on the other side of the fence will do the same.  I hope that the words that have been spoken are genuine.  I hope the emotions that have been displayed are true.  

All I can do is hope.


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