When’s the last time you lied to yourself? Stepped up to the mirror, and unleashed a horrid untruth at your own self, and not only did so freely, but believed it too?
I know. Ridiculous concept. How can you even begin to lie to yourself? We should know the truth, right? And if we know it’s a lie, how could we possibly believe it?
Because we have no other choice. Lying to ourselves is the only way we can cope. In a world, in a universe, in a reality… that is cold, unfeeling, random, and unfathomable, we have to deliberately obfuscate and pretend. We have to slap our hands over our “eyes” and hum an unintelligible tuneless drone to drown out the questions and discontent.
I sense disbelief. I sense dismissal of the idea. So let me throw some out for you. Very common lies, simple on their face, insidious in their deception.
Cheaters never prosper. Bullshit. We all know this isn’t true.
Hard work is its own reward. Bullshit. All of us have trudged through mindless tasks enough to smell a rat.
What goes around comes around.
Smile and the world smiles with you.
Where there is a will, there is a way.
Every cloud has a silver lining.
Bullshit, Bullshit, Bullshit, BULLSHIT.
and these are just dusty old sayings that we may or may or not spout off to others, or cling to ourselves. The greatest lie, is when we pretend not to notice at all. When we deceive ourselves to the point where we don’t even bother with reasons… we just close our eyes to reality.
we ignore imbalance and injustice with indifference. Like cattle plodding after grass, we scarce acknowledge the slaughterhouse.
I can already hear the argument forming. The old “yeah, we know life isn’t fair, get used to it” criticism that can be thrown in the teeth of the negative Nancies as a placebo cure-all. The real problem with that, it’s just as false a statement as the rest. Saying that life isn’t fair, suggests that there’s even some kind of scale in the first place. Reality shows that there is no balance, either fair or crooked at all. Stuff just happens. Hang it all if you are unfortunate enough to get more than your “fair share” of misfortunes, but an indifferent universe has no measure. It’s no more concerned with your mother’s terminal disease, than it is with the lucky bastard that plunks 5 bucks down on a convenience store counter, and walks away 30 million dollars richer from all the randomness. It is implacable in its disregard of the tears of the woman who can bear no children as she sees the birth announcement for the fourth child of an acquaintance.
Perhaps I do a disservice to those who may read this that are happy with the illusions. Perhaps it is a real case of ignorance being bliss, and I only serve to make people feel as empty about it as I have come to.
So if I can then turn it around, and offer the ONLY thing that gives any solace, any peace at all that I’ve been able to derive, then perhaps I can balance out the damage that I have done. That small, (and it is so very small) balm to rub on the disillusionment, is, as maudlin as it sounds, love.
I don’t speak of romantic love, although it truly is a strange and comforting thing. But the simple care and regard that you can offer to others as they tumble towards their end, and the same that you can accept back from them, in your blip of an existence.
The problem with it, is of course, is that it is more fragile than any of the illusionary statements that we could make instead. It’s like applying a band-aid to multiple compound fractures. It doesn’t cover much. But it’s something.
It’s true that love can hurt you just as much. You can be betrayed, ignored or have it torn away from you in the blink of an eye. The memory of having half of my being ripped away from me with the death of my child almost destroyed me. It still might. It is not something that you can ever look at and say that you can be ok.
But I was loved. I was cared for. In my deepest despair, I have been covered in a sea of tears by those who would desperately want a different reality for me, could they choose it. And although it can never be enough, it IS something. It’s the ONLY thing that has made an ounce of sense.
Which is why I beg that we all do it. We all love as much as our hearts can bear. Love your family, as much as you are able, love your friends, make your acquaintances your friends and love them too. Don’t call it love if you are uncomfortable with it stated as such, but the premise remains the same. Tell them you care through word or deed. Fuck propriety.
I’ve learned through horrifying first hand nightmarish experience, you can become no more than a memory in the blink of an eye.
Find what solace you can.