I got tired of holding up an image, it was just to much work. I was tired of showing off my “I’m the man to everybody and I was worn tired of everyone else doing the same to me.” I was lonely, I wanted to really have deep honest conversations with people. I needed love and what I was doing wasn’t working so I decided to start telling the truth. I wanted people to actually know the real me but my fear going in was that they would reject me, the real me and that would hurt more than I could handle. But since I’m a logical and on occasion brilliant person I deducted that I needed to try something because what I was doing wasn’t working for me. I had a big ol hole inside me that sex, work, success, sports, fame, alcohol, land, employees, businesses, arm candy, education, travel and adventure couldn’t fill. I needed help or I was done for, and obituary. So…..with nothing left to lose but what wasn’t real anyways I went for it. I stopped hiding, I started telling the truth. Slowly, gingerly, first with one person, then with many. It shocked people. I cried. They cried. We cried. I became human.
My fears were unfounded. Instead of less friends I had more, instead of rejection I got acceptance. I realized I liked shocking people, it was fun, it felt good. By showing other people how messed up my insides were I got better. Disclosing my hurting insides healed other people’s insides, We got better together. I was hooked.
I have some business skill on occasion. I have always struggled a little with the true call of my vocation but I know it has to with people. I like people, when I’m doing good I’m good with them, I love them, I help, I’m good at it. When I took the road less traveled down the yellow brick road of full self dis-closer I ran into some fantastic people. I picked up my best friends in life along the way the Lion, the Scare Crow, and the Tin Man and we all found what we were looking for. We got it along the way. Together.
Today I’m a reckless truth teller. My wife regularly gives me the “talk” before we go out in public to “be nice”, to “watch my words”, to “be kind” to people…… it makes her nervous….but she likes it too in a weird way. I’m a reckless truth teller because it got me better, it keeps me better and I can hardly help myself. It’s what I do,…..and when I’m having a good day I really love myself and there is no one I would rather be and that is one of the best feelings in the world.
Living out in the open will get you shot at, but it will also get you everything you really need. I didn’t/don’t see much of a choice. The cool part is when we do it leads others out there too. We find what we were looking for, we’re not alone any more, we’re accepted, loved and we’re together.
The more things we throw at that big hole inside of us just makes it keep getting bigger. When It gets big enough God fits in there perfectly. I have found things that help me, hunting, fishing, sports, swimming, reading, road trips, writing, and napping. These things don’t fill me completely but they help. They remind me that it’s not my job to fill myself, it’s my job to recognize my emptiness and pain and find ways to live as well as I can as a broken man.
Something about the empty inside of us is that it brings us together. I’ve never made a friend by bragging about my accomplishments, but I have made all my good ones out of sharing my weakness, my brokenness, my insides. That empty broken place is a great place to make friends. Our friends get us closer to God and that is one of the main ways we get holy. Together.