Secrets From Self

 Admit something and you’re stuck with it. That probably explains why many of us walk around with our heads in the sand. (Of course impossible, but an interesting image.) Think of the people you know who are alcoholics, yet steadfastly claim they aren’t. And those who claim to love a spouse but speak about, and to, that spouse with contempt in their voices. And those who find their children endearing beyond belief, refusing to recognize others grit their teeth every time the little creeps appear.

If one admits there is a problem, there’s the problem of getting past the original problem. Pain and a demand for some action is possible. If Henrietta, who “loves” her husband admits she wishes she was with practically any other man than hubby, she’s stuck with thinking about divorce. What a mess that could make in her life.

What I’ve said isn’t new news. We all know it at some level. But what do we do with it? Having recently realized something about my life—which I choose to keep to myself—has given me a headful of grief and annoyance. I’d be better off if I’d never admitted it. That’s not completely true because it’s made me more confident about life, as contradictory as that appears. Now that I’m in on this secret-from-self I can decide to do something with it—or not. I have a choice, I won’t go into death never having realized I might have done some things differently in my life which might have enriched it. I can chose to change or I can chose not to. 

Perhaps I will have arrived at the point of “the sufficiency of is.” That phrase comes from a short story by Mark Jacobs in which an older woman is considering making a major change in her life. Ultimately she decides not to do so because life is what it is and it’s okay. That gives her a greater sense of control. My annoying, revealed secret has given me that as well.

Think about the secrets you might be keeping from yourself. Would you be better off if you looked for them and decided what to do with them? There might be losses but there also could be gains. I wish you the best of luck.