The audacity of honesty…

au·dac·i·ty

ôˈdasitē/

1. Fearless daring; intrepidity.
2. Bold or insolent heedlessness of restraints, as of those imposed by prudence, propriety, or convention.

hon·es·ty
ˈänistē/

1. The quality or condition of being honest; integrity.
2. Truthfulness; sincerity: in all honesty.

I pride myself on being honest with people. It’s part of my DNA. I feel bad if I withhold information. It drains me mentally. I’m honest because it guarantees my integrity. I know I’ve done quite a bit of damage by being honest. The damage I’ve done ranges from a simple response to an opinion of an outfit to being truthful to a friend about seeing her man out with another women to extremely personal situations of my own. Hell, I’ve lost friendships ( well, what I assumed were friendships) because I was honest.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not a saint by far… I don’t always come forth immediately. Some situations require me to think longer to consider the parties involved (because I don’t like knowing my words or actions could hurt someone) before “coming clean” or revealing a truth. I’ve got a conscience so regardless of the impact; I’ll still come clean. I can’t sleep in dirty laundry.  I can’t hold onto anything that directly impacts someone else. It’s impossible. I’m not sure how anyone can be dishonest and go through their day, week, month, or year living a lie or with lies attached to them…living a reckless life. Although I don’t understand it, I’ve seen it. I’ve observed it. I see how much easier life would be for me if I ran from the truth or avoided people who challenge me to be a better woman, to be an honest woman.  It’s easy to live a reckless life. A life without a conscious carries no responsibility.  A life surrounded by puppets whose strings I pull to make me feel better about my decisions isn’t gonna make me a better woman. It’s a simple life to those who live it. The reality…it’s an immature life. It’s a life that will eventually come full circle with no option but to face the consequences buried from the past.

I’m saying all of this because I now realize that honesty, being open, and telling the truth comes with a price…regret.  It leaves me with regret. I regret being honest because of all I’ve lost… Because I had the audacity to tell the truth, to tell my truth, to be true to myself, I’ve lost. Because I had the audacity to keep my integrity intact, I’ve lost. Because I had the audacity to not live a lie, I’ve lost. Because I had the audacity to not be okay with situations, I’ve lost. Because I had the audacity to not follow the leader, I’ve lost. Because I had the audacity to have a voice, I’ve lost. Because I had the audacity to use my voice, I’ve lost. I’ve lost and it makes me regret putting honesty first because it’s painful. I often question myself.  I wonder if it’s more important to be honest or to keep my true thoughts to myself.  Sometimes I think I’d be okay with living my truth but keeping my thoughts to myself when asked.  Sometimes I think it would be so much easier to go with the flow like I’ve got no desire to do anything more than live.  Like I don’t care about how my actions impact other people, like I don’t care about myself, like I don’t know what I’m actually doing…  Sometimes that seems so much easier because those people seem to have it all figured out.  They don’t care so why should I, right?  Yeah, I tried that and I learned that those people, the ones who claim to live with no regret, wake up each morning with nothing but regrets.  That’s not the life for me.  I’ll take honesty and the pang of regret I feel at times when I lose something or someone for being truthful over anything.

Humility is a tough road to travel. It’s a road less taken. It’s a lonely road. It’s the only road I know with very few folks passing by and even though I know that’s the case…I’ve got the audacity to take it day after day after day…

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