There are so many things… layered things deeply woven within my journey as a wife, as a woman and as a mother. We are subconsciously trained, here in this culture we call home, to look at the beautiful, well put together women and wonder What’s her secret? While also bristling internally about the knowledge of what our secrets are.
I may not know what hers is, but mine- Mine is ugly. It does not lead to put together, it does not lead to beauty.
My secret is the shame attached to every single element of my real, genuine life. My motherhood, daughterhood, marriage, sisterhood… On and on. You tell me a story about your father and then ask me about my own dad. I smile and relay the information, while the secret part beneath the surface that remains unsaid screams the truth- I don’t really know my father. My dad isn’t actually even my dad. He’s someone else’s dad. He loves me, I love him, but our lives are different circles of things now and though we exchange and annual something-or-other, we are pretty separate and that is ok. What ownership do I have of him? None. Fatherless and unvalued, there in lies my secret shame.
Your sister is your best friend, and now you’re asking if I am close with mine? I have several sisters but am close with two of mine. Sisters are the best! Except, gurgling just beneath my horizon there’s more. There is a defect within me, there must be, and the reality is that they aren’t really my sisters. Not beyond the word anyway. I have no one real, that is mine. Shame.
My marriage of twenty-five years, what’s our secret? It hasn’t been perfect. There hasn’t been faithfulness. There hasn’t always been stability, honor, honesty, love… Ease. If you only knew…
Shame… Shame eats away at the fact that my children are not from my womb, shame lives in the many words and perspectives who’ve challenged my motherhood and questioned its validity. Oh, Hallmark of consumer driven holidays, do I deserve a Mother’s Day nod, a celebration, am i even a real mom at all? World, which reiterates over and over a woman’s purpose is to bear children- and Very beginning of the Bible which explains a woman’s curse will be painful childbirth- who am I? What am I?
My secret is shame. My truths, the REAL truths, they silence the shame. For awhile anyway- but it always comes back. Today- today I see it for what it is.
Shhh, between you and me, tomorrow I may forget again…
(this post is in participation of the FMF prompt on Secret. to see more, visit the link.)