Speaking Truth

In the BBC production of Jane Eyre starring Toby Stephens and Ruth Wilson, Mr. Rochester, who is hosting a house party of upper class people, asks Jane if all of his guests abandoned him, what she would do. Rochester posed the question because he has a secret wife hidden away in a tower. Jane, of course, assures him she'll stand by him. My clutter is the crazy spouse that I don't talk about and almost no one has ever seen. And my inner voice predicted dire consequences if anyone ever found out about it. It told me my family and friends would be horrified; would never speak to me again.

So I was more than a little nervous posting the link to Brooks Palmer's blog entry for August 5. It was a kind of coming out.

I was moved by the positive responses--public and private--I received. I realized that when you speak your truth, when you allow people to see who you are, with all your vulnerabilities and imperfections, the result canĀ  be wonderful. You can be embraced instead of shunned.

Two friends of mine recently had similar experiences speaking their particular truths, and received similar responses.

I think the time has come for all of us to begin speaking our truths. Not just for ourselves, but for the world at large. There are people out there trying to hold everything down; we need to counteract that so things can be lifted up instead. When we speak our truths, we all benefit.

As for my inner voice--last week someone gave me a gift by describing that voice as one of those toys that kids drag along behind them, like a quacking duck. I loved that image and have been savoring it since then. It made me laugh, and offered me a way of conceptualizing the voice as background noise as opposed to an authoritative judge. And it offered the tantalizing possibility that one day I might be able to let go of the string and leave the voice behind.