Monday, February 4, 2013

It's All in the Details

I have a thing about secrets.  I used to be a secret keeper.  Secrets of assault.  Secrets of abuse.  I held my secrets until they literally broke my body down and spilled onto the floor beside me.  I held them because I was told through words and actions that my experiences were not valid.  I held them to shield hearts against breakage.  I don't do that anymore.  I no longer bear all of the responsibility.  The thing about secrets is that, one day, one way or another, they will be revealed anyway.

During my quest to finally find out who my mother really was, 20 years after her death, there were a lot of secrets revealed to me.  Secrets that, had I known at an earlier time, could have completely reshaped my life, my understanding, my identity.  Secrets that ultimately repainted many pictures of people and judgement calls.  Secrets, which in the end made me feel much better actually knowing.

I do not want to raise my daughter within a web of lies, and do so on the basis of "protecting" her.  I think it's safe to say that, universally, parents care a great deal about protecting our children.  In the process of providing that protection we will bend, omit, restructure, hell... even recreate truths.  Essentially, we don't give our children enough credit for their ability to comprehend and process truths that need telling.  To avoid being across the table from my child 15 years down the road listening to her tell me all the ways in which new news could have provided her so much more way back then, I will sit across from her now, and answer any and every single question she may ever have.