Underbelly

May 16, 2019

Confession: I thought about telling y’all that I’d been in the Seychelles.

I did, I honestly thought about it, if only for a minute or two. Because telling you that story would be so, so much easier. But lying to you isn’t doing myself any favors. Lying–to everyone and myself–is what got me into this mess in the first place. The truth, ugly as it is, at least serves a purpose. At bare minimum, it is honest and I don’t know about you, but I’m sick of being lied to by dang near everybody nowadays.

I live in (what I not-so-fondly) call Stepford. It’s a lovely place to visit, to take a scenic drive through. It backs up against the mountains, with views so striking you almost can’t believe they’re real. The lawns are perfectly mainicured, flowers in full bloom. The homes are tidy, the closets carefully Marie Kondo’d (Marie Kondo’d is a verb now, did you know?) People leave for work in their shiny, environmentally-friendly cars. The women, in their Lululemon gear, have painted nails and sleek bodies and thick hair that looks elegant in a messy bun.

It’s a beautiful place to visit. But living in it? It’s Hell.

At least it is for me, the deeply flawed.

It’s hard to be flawed in a neighborhood that really doesn’t allow it. Ask anyone how they are and they’ll reply that all is just boom-smackity wonderful. The kids are great, they’re so dang smart and athletic. We’ve just started Whole 30 and even though we don’t need to lose a few pounds, we have so much more energy now. You should try it. When is the next book club? Want to meet at Starbucks?

The cookies don’t crumble here and if they do, we certainly don’t talk about it. Because everything is fine and dandy, just fine thankyouverymuch.

Everything here shines like a brand new silver dollar.

 

And me? I tried to follow along. I rubbed and rubbed, trying to make my life shine. But guess what? The shine on the outside is worthless when you are in tatters on the inside. It doesn’t work, at least it doesn’t for me.

My Mama used to say that “you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear,” which means actually I don’t know what but I think it means that if you’re ugly in your own skin you can try to hide it, but people see right through you. Or if they don’t, YOU see through you and you know you’re a fraud and you feel ashamed.

Shame sucks. It eats you from the inside out.

I think I’ve been eaten alive enough, so I’m not playing anymore. Take that, Stepford! You have an underbelly. It’s dirty and it’s messy and it’s broken into sharp, rough shards. It’s me. No worries, you don’t have to air your dirty laundry or bare the skeletons in your closet. You are safe. I’ll be your poster child so you don’t have to reveal one little thing. Wipe your conscience clear. Keep shining, keep winking in the noonday sun.

I wave the flag in surrender.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Annie Jones May 16, 2019 at 11:54 am

I love the real you. Always have and always will. All of us are a hot mess but only the best will admit it. Xoxoxo

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Papa Guy May 17, 2019 at 9:48 pm

I still ponder on making you emotional, in a previous post, and feel bad. Again, I apologize for said. You were going through, and it seems still are, going through some rough times. Which we all do from time to time. I hope that all works out for you, and you get to feeling as normal as normal can be.
I have one thing to say to the Stepford folks of North Denver. Fuck You. Get a life! You ain’t that special! Bubba and bubettes!!

Dear, you have absolutely “nothing” to be ashamed of!!!

Reply

Arnebya May 21, 2019 at 12:56 pm

Man, the shame. It’s something. I know it well, but we are not friends.

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