Thursday, May 20, 2010

Good Riddance to Pretending

I have spent a large part of my life pretending.
I pretended to be happy when I wasn't. I pretended to be pain-free when I wasn't. I pretended my family life was normal and healthy and safe, which it wasn't.
In fact, I was so good at pretending that I was even able to convince myself that my father was the best father a girl could have! I really believed it!
These days I am learning to be me. It isn't easy. I fall back into pretending quite easily. Or I just withdraw so I do not have to show my feelings or thoughts. But then sometimes, I catch myself doing that. And I become real again.
I practice checking out my feelings. Like right now - I am feeling anxious and sad. I do not know why. I just take one step at a time. One day at a time.
Maureen Brady writes in her book, Daybreak, Meditations for Women Survivors of Sexual Abuse, that she practices in the mirror, "taking a look at my anger, my sadness, my joy. It feels good to say good riddance to pretending."
And in another entry, Ms. Brady writes, "I allow myself to be exactly how I am."


Patricia Singleton said...

Oh yes, we can be so good at pretending. I did it for many years in order to have a relationship with my dad. I also pretended that my mom loved me the way that I needed her too. It was all lies. Today I don't pretend. Today I know the truth. Today I am free of lies and pretending. Life is better.

Paula said...

I am so in your corner. I pretended so much and sometimes still catch me doing so, yet I have moved on and become moe genuine with myself. Interesting s i posted about that today.

Colleen said...

Patricia, that is so inspiring. I need to remember that life is better when I do not pretend. Because I do not want to go there any more. Thanks and hugs.

Paula, guess we are on the same wave length! I will check out your post. Hugs.

sarah said...

I pretended too....pretended everything was ok when it definitely wasn't. No more pretending...Walking in truth. stay strong.

Colleen said...

Sarah, thank you. Yes, walking in truth is so much better. Blessings.

Just Be Real said...

I thought I responded to this post, but apparently not. Ahhh, the wearing of the masks in order to protect ourselves. We become master at pretending. But, it is so much freeing now to not do this. Not saying I have successfully stopped pretending, no, it is still hard. But, I recognize what I am doing now and try to be more real. Thanks, as always Colleen for such an inspiring post! Blessings.

Colleen said...

JBR, thank you for your inspiring comment!! I think the fact that we now know we pretended, we are more aware and that awareness is half the battle! Hugs and blessings to you!

Gabriella said...

Thanks, Colleen.
Yes, no more pretending - we are what we are and God's love for us is immense. His love for us ... not for our masks!

Colleen said...

Gabriella, I love how you put that! Love for us, not for our masks. Amen.