Friday, July 3, 2009

Former Compulsive Liar. Present.

Sometimes I tell a story, give my opinion, or share details of an event, and realize that it may or may not be true. I have been known to make things up. (Like I am a tennis player.) Sometimes, my memory has distorted the actual happening into what I wanted it to be. (Like I am a good tennis player.) I usually am not well informed, and do not have many of the facts, but I like to think that I am an expert. Therefore, I am a self-declared know-it-all, who really only knows what she thinks, what she sees, and what she thinks she sees. Observant as I am, the fine details which I think mean something, usually amount to something excessively unremarkable, and not as romantic as I had imagined.

I do not like to hear bad news. I do not relish in gossip. I do not like to talk about people in any way that may hurt their feelings. But it happens, and I always feel bad. Ask anyone who has been trapped with me for more than a few hours; I end up saying something remotely unkind about someone known or unknown to me. Then I feel such distress that I make my apologies to ears that usually do not remember. I always commit myself to not saying anything about anyone for any of their faults, or personal annoyances, but I am an obvious imperfection in the crowd of humanity, and thus the cycle rounds. See an older post for further examples.

I am also guilty of embellishment, as I previously alluded to, and I am deeply troubled that I may give the wrong impression about myself or my fine abilities. Or anyone else's. These statements are characteristically followed by a statement such as, “Well, I am not really sure it happened that way”, “That isn't what I really said”, or perhaps, “This is only my opinion, please don't take it as doctrine.”

I am a people watcher. I notice mannerisms, and the awkward movements that you always hope no one sees. I notice mispronounced words, incorrect usage, etc. Not that I do not myself make these mistakes, for I am guilty. Reason steps in and tells me that people don't care, and likely do not pay close enough attention to notice such things. So as I watch people, I do not look for imperfection, but good things. In my mind, I find certain files are fuller than others. If I take those items out and arrange them all behind my eyes, I feel like I can tell you a great deal about this person. My conclusions are usually idyllic.

This is not to say that I do not tell the truth in general. For I do tell things as accurately as I can, and often still my tongue for wont of information. I am constantly plagued by things I have said for the truth that may or may not be found in them, but mostly I lack courage to accept that someone may not like what I say; and so I set out to know a detailed knowledge of the subjects on which I express my thoughts. I do not endure any form of rejection well. A tragic, common flaw, yes. I say lots of things that people may not like, but the things that are important to me are hard to say; the stories I want to write are hard to let others hear.

And so much of the time, I remain silent.

1 comment:

Jessica said...

Amanda - you've perfectly described my version of social anxiety. My mouth and brain always conspire to get me in trouble. Or to alienate me. Or someone else. And if they don't, then I sit around waiting for them to. But I've never known you to have any such flaws. I'm sure it's all perceived and not real.