Monday, March 10, 2008

Tell me sweet little lies

I am a big, fat liar.

I lie almost every single day. And I don’t feel the least bit guilty about it.

Because I don’t tell lies designed to hurt people or cheat people or even lies designed to afford me some kind of power or advantage over others. I tell little, white lies designed to boost the spirit and fortify the resolve of both casual acquaintances and the people I love the most.

I do appreciate that some people see a value in complete total honesty: but I don’t want to be around those people. I don't believe that brutal honesty is constructive much of the time, especially not when spirits are low or people are plagued by insecurities.

Let me tell you the kind of honesty in which I believe.

I believe in selective honesty born of hope, of kindness and of need.

I believe that words are like magic beans: that sometimes when you say things in just the right way, you can make them grow into something like truth.

Sometimes impossibly brave words – You can get through this, Things are going to get better, All these trials will make you stronger - come out sounding something like resolve.

Resolve spoken aloud has a funny way of making the heart swell with hope.

And is not hope the seed from which conviction and truth grow?

Have you ever been struck by someone’s weariness, and then made a point of complimenting them on their dress or their hair or the book they are carrying, as if that were the first thing you noticed about them? I have. Don’t tell me it’s not magical to watch a sad face breathe in compliments and breathe out confidence.

Have you ever clutched a crying child to your chest and told them that mommy would always be there, that mommy would always make the hurt go away? I have. Don’t chide me for creating a zone of safety from which my child may freely grow and learn to nurture the strength he will need when he is old enough to discover my duplicity.

Some things, kindness, hope and love, for instance, are more important than the blunt, unvarnished truth: words that impart strength and optimism need not pass a lie detector test.

If a friend of mine raises her tired, hopeful face to me and says, I know I must look terrible, I will smile, touch her cheek, shake my head and say, Don’t be silly, you look beautiful.

If my child runs to me bruised, crying and fearful of the hurts the world has in store I will crush his tiny body to mine, take a deep breath and whisper fiercely, Don’t worry, Mommy will never let anything hurt you again.

If someone I love looks at me with tremulous eyes and asks if everything is going to be okay, I will embrace them, I will reach into the depths of my heart, summon my courage to the sticking point and say in a voice that brooks no doubt, Everything is going to work out just fine, I know it.

And if my pants do catch fire, let them burn: I will be too busy making magic to notice.

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65 comments:

KathyLikesPink said...

"Don’t tell me it’s not magical to watch a sad face breathe in compliments and breathe out confidence."

Very well said. Lovely post. I agree with you 100%.

angie said...

You amaze me. YOur prose and honesty really touches me.

kittenpie said...

I am a terrible, crappy, unwilling liar in every case but these - and even then, I'm not sure it's a pure lie, because I really do believe in optimism and the power of people to get through things and the notion that things will tuirn out well, the vast majority of the time. Scik, but true.

sam said...

Beautiful, just beautiful!

That's the best kinda lie!

Melissa said...

I do the same thing in the circumstances you've explained but I still like to tell the truth as much as I can...

Jennifer said...

I believe in magic of all kinds. Especially in the magic that can be made with words. Go, you.

Jobthingy said...

hmmm.. i commented and got an error :|

so i have no clue whether it will go thru again.

but i tried to tell you that i dont think your pants will catch on fire, thanks for the comments and ill be kickin around here often :)

Huckdoll said...

Aw. I just loved this, DMD. Loved! Beautifully thought out and written.

Dawn said...

You sound like the perfect kind of friend. I loved this post and I agree wholeheartedly. Sometimes the truth can be very hurtful and is best left unsaid.

GoMommy said...

Boy did this post come two days too late for me! I could learn a thing or two from you about not being so honest about absolutely everything!

La La said...

"I believe that words are like magic beans: that sometimes when you say things in just the right way, you can make them grow into something like truth."

Yes. Yes. Yes.

Lovely post.

Chicky Chicky Baby said...

Nothing wrong with those lies. Nothing at all.

The Boyds Family said...

I wouldn't really call those lies - I call them being a good friend, sister, daughter, wife, mother, etc. And it sounds like you are all of the above.

Great Post!

Kelly said...

Why have we not met before? I love this post. Magic is so important and too often lacking. You are now blogrolled, darling. Be prepared for me to stalk you silly.

SaraLynn said...

Absolutely marvelous!

slouching mom said...

Oh, DMD.

I love this. I agree with all of it.

MommyTime said...

I agree with you completely on the uplifting little lies that help make the world go round. I feel conflicted about some lies when it comes to our kids, though because I find it so hard to know where the line must be drawn -- though it's easy to know when it's been crossed. Back when no one was reading my blog, I pondered this question of lying to our kids ... I'd love to know what you think of these trickier (less benevolent) lies...

OHmommy said...

You just keep getting better and better.

This was a seriously awesome post. I agree 100%

OHmommy said...

"Don’t tell me it’s not magical to watch a sad face breathe in compliments and breathe out confidence."

You should copyright that. Brilliant.

Karen said...

If only more people thought this way the world would be a better place.

Life As I Know It said...

There are some lies that are perfectly ok to tell.

Great post.

Zoe said...

god i LOVE you!

sky girl said...

Sing it Sista!!!

Mighty Morphin' Mama said...

What a beautiful post. I think it is wonderful to lift someone's spirits with our words and actions, an honestly it isn't usually a lie.

Amy said...

have you ever thought of becoming a motivational speaker. you rock, girl!

Jenifer said...

See I don't even think of this as lying. This is doing good and finding those bright spots in an otherwise dismal situation.

You are in good company.

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

If you have to use the word brutal alongside the word honesty, you'd best think long and hard about what you're about to say.

Nap Warden said...

Girl I've said it once, and I'll say it again...You are a great writer *jealous* (in a good way) :)

Joanna said...

That is sweet! Makes my heart sigh.

Tot's Mom said...

IF our intentions are good and our heart is filled with compassion, then I guess a little lie wouldn't hurt. ;)

Mommy Cracked said...

I so completely agree.

LunaNik said...

Yes, yes, yes!!

Brilliantly written and so, so true!!


Great post...really.

Cheri said...

This is an amazing post. I don't think what you are talking about are white lies, they are well-placed acts of kindess.

Tootsie Farklepants said...

Burning pants unite!!

jennwa said...

Words are very powerful, we must use them wisely. It is always a good thing to offer support and make someone feel better when they really need it. You wrote a great post.

a kelly said...

truer words were never spoken.
there is power your words.

Ms. Porter said...

I pride myself on being honest and I don't forgive dishonesty very easily...what you have described in this post aren't lies. It takes alot more generosity and kindness to find the words to soothe a sad soul or to lift the spirits of another. Nice post...as usual.

Beth said...

What a great post and I agree with you completely!

And I love the title! I'm going to be singing that song all day now...

Queen of My Domain said...

I wish I had your words. What a beautiful post. And I guess I'm a liar also.

Karen MEG said...

"I believe that words are like magic beans: that sometimes when you say things in just the right way, you can make them grow into something like truth."

Awestruck.

You're the best kind of liar, Kelly.

Heather said...

**Raising hand.***
Me! I'm a liar too. No sense in kicking someone when they're down.

wheelsonthebus said...

Because I lost my mother at a young age, I do worry about saying I will always be there for them, because I would hate to make the loss of their mother even worse. That said, I say things like, "I will try to always protect you" or "Mommy will always love you," because I will, alive or not.

Motherhood for Dummies said...

It really is true. All of us are liars. But honestly I rather be a lair than rude. I don't want to rain on someones parade, or like you said kick them when they are down. Every body needs hope sometimes :)

flutter said...

This was totally phenomenal.

E said...

Wonderful....
My gram always said that the truth is overrated...
You said it prettier though

Kitty said...

"I believe that words are like magic beans: that sometimes when you say things in just the right way, you can make them grow into something like truth."

Amen to that. I too believe that words have immense power ... for good or ill. We have a responsibility to use them wisely.

x

Jen said...

Beautifully written.

I remember being a High schooler and feeling like a particular outfit I was wearing looked horrible on me, I had an important day ahead, and no chance to change my clothes as we were away from home. I needed a positive self-concept to rely on for the stressful day ahead, and at that moment as a 15 year old I really felt that my outfit could make or break my day. I asked my mother, and she said, "You look beautiful. You always look beautiful to me."

I asked my best friend, and she said, "Well Jen, its not really the best outfit. Let's see if you wear my jacket with it instead and pull your hair back with this scrunchies to see if we can do something a little better here..."

I really valued my friend's honesty, and her ability to be honest in a genuinely helpful way, without being hurtfully critical. I'd like to be more like that.

John-Michael said...

"... sometimes when you say things in just the right way, you can make them grow into something like truth."

What I hear you say here is "If you say things in Faith, they become actual Substance of things Hoped for, and that Substance is true evidence of Truth that we have not even seen yet." And I recognized this profound truth, from your lips, echoes the words found in the book of Hebrews, chapter 11, verse 1. Thus, I continue to admire, respect, and love you even more. For you, My Dear, Kelly, are "plugged in" to Truth. And you present it with astounding beauty and grace that is, quite simply ... all YOU!

Tis is one of the most amazing pieces of soulful and inspiring work that I have had the honor to read.

NAMASTE

"Now Faith is the substance of things Hoped for, the Evidence of things not seen." Heb. 11:1

Laura said...

What an amazing, heart-felt post. You are amazing!

Thanks for sharing and making me think about my situation and me.

common mom said...

Great post. I'm a big fat liar.

Melody said...

I thought about this post last night, when my little Mater asked me when he "was gonna be died"

My answer of course: "Oh, not for a long long time, baby." And I pray every day that it's the truth.

Angella said...

This is beautiful. I love this post!

Egghead said...

Oh but how can it be a lie when you can look in the eyes to the very soul of a person and make them feel alive and hopeful. In the end it really isn't a lie. Lovely post.

Gena said...

I say AMEN to your post. It was beautiful and it was, itself, magical to read. I have a son who is a cancer survivor. I had to say all of those brave, wonderful, magical things to my 3 other children, my spouse, my mother, my in-laws, etc., etc. You know what? It did help and it was wonderful. He is okay. He is cancer-free and has been for 4 years now. I would do the same thing in a heartbeat and I have done the same thing in many other situations.

I would love to meet you face to face. You seem to be a truly remarkable woman. Thank you for visiting my little blog and encouraging me.

Lisa said...

Great post - and oh so true!!! Some people need to take a lesson from you and help others with a few little white lies!!!

Thanks for your insight!

Kami said...

I agree with you but I do think that sometimes, some people do need the honest to goodness nasty truth.

But only in rare circumstances, otherwise, why the hell not fill them with hope?

GREAT post, thanks for the reminder of why we should share the love.

Reluctant Housewife said...

Yes! Exactly. You rock (as always). So (so!) glad I've found your blog.

Wonderful World of Weiners said...

Love this post! You have such a way with words!

Hallie :)

Becky L said...

yeah, I know what you're talking about

Just Janice said...

What lie do you tell every night?

LaskiGal said...

"I believe that words are like magic beans." I love this post . . .

If this is the case, call me a liar, too.

Melek said...

nothing wrong with small white lies if they're for the greater good. i've never believed in being brutally honest. what's the point in hurting someone's feelings by saying "yeah, those jeans really DO make you look fat."

Shellie said...

Beautiful post, it's not a lie when the sentiment behind it is true.

Janet said...

You remind me of my friend, Michelle; she's good and kind like this :-)

umm... said...

I loved this post. Considering what you are going through lately, you are so courageous and wonderful to be thinking of others' well-being as well. You are definitely making magic :)