We think we know someone. We hear their words and watch them interact with others and we think we know them. Or really – the truth is – and more importantly to me – you think they know you. You are true – constant, honest, open and kind. You don’t keep secrets or play games or lie. Gossip is an ugly word and drama belongs to Friday nights on ABC. You would hope that by now they would know you.
“The liar has many friends, and leads an existence of great loneliness.” – Adrienne Rich
But time and space and girl on girl bullshit twists and turns what is so clear and so obvious into nasty assumptions and junior high games of truth or dare. There are people saying shit just to say shit and using other people just to gain some imaginative sort of glory. They have that empty, no good, ethnocentric ability to lie to themselves and to everyone in their path for as long as they can – just to keep from being discovered. The bigots, the players, the manipulators and cheats remind me day in and day out that my world keeps getting smaller and smaller – by choice or design – I dare not have those undesirable influences in my life.
“The liar lives in fear of losing control. She cannot even desire a relationship without manipulation, since to be vulnerable to another person means for her the loss of control.” – Adrienne Rich
It always amazes me really – how easily we can be fooled. Or – are we really being fooled? Could it be that a part of us just wants to see the good in others before we recognize the bad? Wolves dressed in sheep’s clothing and all that fairy tale talk – two faced, mask wearing, manipulative people playing games with the lives of other people – and for what? When I was a kid – adults used to feel this way about politicians and used car salesmen. And now it kind of feels like there is a used car lot on every corner – and I can’t help but wonder if it has always been this way.
“As long as they don’t know the truth – it can’t hurt them. I don’t have to be good – I just have to be right. Tell it to someone who cares. That’s your problem – not mine. How does that benefit me? As soon as I get what I need – I am gone. I can’t help the way you feel. Get over it. Get a life. It is what it is.”
I am not Saint Guz – not by a long shot. But I do know that in the end of all things – before God and family and Audrey Hepburn – I am that I am. I struggle each and every day to work things out – to be kind – to find a better way – to think outside of myself so that perhaps someone else might have a better day. I know these things to be true – and I really don’t understand why it is so difficult for so many. Find forgiveness – and your heart will be lighter. Accept diversity and your world will be broader. Speak the truth and your voice will be sweeter. Look beyond your own front porch and your vision will be infinite. Be kind – be fair and do your best each and everyday not to hurt anyone. Why is it so hard to incorporate integrity and kindness into each breath we take?
Oh if only it were 1946 and I was sitting at my typewriter in Paris with a bottle of Absinthe and a Lucky Strike hanging out of my mouth as I tormented myself with the deliberate pounding of the keys on the Corona Streamline in front of me. That would be the perfect place for a mess like me. No social media – no virtual misunderstandings and cryptic messages to cypher through. Imagine a world where people spoke full sentences and said what they actually meant and not what they thought you might need to hear. Imagine the Champ-Elysees out my apartment window and the smells and sounds of Paris in a more deliberate time. Imagine a place where friends sit across from each other at small tables along winding sidewalks over a café au lait uninterrupted by buzzing phones and breaking news 5,000 miles away. Imagine a world where conversations were intentional and meaningful and not sent via text while waiting in traffic on a Friday afternoon. Imagine being present – really present – imagine that being enough.
“When a woman tells the truth she is creating the possibility for more truth around her.” – Adrienne Rich
Life and experience have taught me many things – and I embrace the expansion of my curious mind. The lessons are not always painless – but they are necessary and in the end – empowering. I can say for certain that the world needs to be kinder. Women, especially, need to be kinder to each other. We need to give each other the benefit of the doubt. We need to be honest from the very core of our being. We need to work together to build a better world for our daughters and sons. I believe we can make it happen. We just need to harness our secret mojo lady powers and simply do the right thing – imagine a world where we all just TRIED to do the right thing. Imagine.
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About K. Guzman
Kathy grew up all over the US - lots of east coast time. She is a surfer girl with an unabridged curiosity. A woman whose mid life awakening continues to bring her to the place she was meant to be. Her degree in Journalism/Creative Writing from the University of Central Florida is being yanked from the archives and put to good use. Her two kids are grown and rock stars in this wild world – her Harley is ready for some serious summer miles – and her heart remains open to life, women and the possibilities each day brings.