Where’s the line?
I know where it is for some people. And some people, like Penelope Trunk, don’t have a line. She says whatever. She doesn’t even mind if her whatever breaks up an engagement. But, in her defense, it sounds like the marriage was impending doom anyway. Her line-crossing was probably a good thing in the long run, but messy in the short.
Penelope has no line. From what I can tell, she writes exactly what is going on in her head. Sure, there’s probably a lot more going on, but what she does say seems to be 100% pure unfiltered organic thought. And those thoughts ruffle feathers.
I know, I know, we can’t please everybody. But what about at least just the people closest us? How are we supposed to share and be open and vulnerable and truly express ourselves when we have to censor it for fear of pissing someone off. Even if said someone doesn’t care about your writing and probably never reads it anyway?
I suppose this is one of the reasons why writers take up pen names?
Maybe I could pretend to write as some other person and then I’d have the guts to say all the crazy stuff swirling around in my skull?
What am I so afraid of? Why hold back?
I don’t want to be branded as a nutcase. I don’t mind being a bit of a nut bar – as in, “Oh, she’s so silly sometimes,” or, “She’s got some pretty ‘out-there’ ideas, but she still has her head on straight,” I wouldn’t even mind, “Yah, she’s got her own way of going about things.”
But I cringe when I imagine people thinking I’ve actually ‘lost it.’ And I feel like if I truly expressed not only what goes on in my head, but even a fraction of the stuff that goes on in my world, I’d be branded/banished/burned for sure. It seems I’m suffering from some old burned-at-the-stake trauma….. even after all these years…..
And what if I think up something really cool, or invent something amazing or develop a super important globally relevant theory on consciousness….. And then someone goes and digs up my ‘crazy blog’ and they try to discredit me and write me off as New Age wacko? See? What will I do then!
One must be prudent.
But also honest.
Truth, with a side of Nuts and a Grain of Salt
And what if my honesty scares people? Can people handle the truth? Can I handle the truth? Good God, sometimes even I can’t stand to write about the bizarre unfoldings…. (Do you keep a journal? Have you noticed the absence of writing means you don’t like what’s going on in your life?) So if I can’t stand it, how can I expect others to take it seriously…..or with a grain of salt, as the situation requires….
I recently listened to an interview with an author who wrote a book about seeing angels. Or more specifically, how she sees angels. At first, even though I believe in this kind of stuff, I couldn’t help but hear myself saying, “Okay…. sure…. riiiiight, lady,” and wondering if she was a nutbar or the real deal. There are many so-called ‘flaky new age granola people’ out there…. they just feed the crazy-making flames! And there I was, scowling at the book, me, I was judging and questioning! Me, who begs not to be judged.
And yes, we must have discernment and no we mustn’t believe everything we see without first checking it out for ourselves…. But, oh man…. it’s a fine line between credible/innovative/energetically aware and new age woo-woo nutbar.
Above: granola nut bars (way better than the ones I’m talking about…)
Side note: I just had the best idea ever. I could truthfully say “I went to Harvard” if I just go there…. I could pop in and tour the campus or something… walk about. Then, voilà, the claim would be true! Sure, sure, I would explain later… but just for a moment, that person who was judging me would have to add Harvard to the mix and sort it out later. Bahh! Take that!
I know all this ties back in to worthiness and value and feeling safe (or not). And the safer I feel, the more I will stick my neck out and express unfiltered truth….
But I’m squirming right now. I’m standing just below the line and pushing my head up against it…. testing out the elasticity. At some point I’ll have to break through because it’s getting cramped down here.
Images via Real Growth for Women; Kitchen Simplicity
« Postcard From the Bottom of the... . . . . . . or . . . . . . Orange Cat: Best Tour Guide in Rome »