Amy Bloom wrote in her novel Away, "Everyone has two memories. The one you can tell and the one that is stuck to the underside of that, the dark, tarry smear of what happened." I like this because everyone likes his or her own decent version of our story. In the retelling, we might shy away from the parts that cast us in an unfavorable light. Sometimes that might be the ugly thing someone said to us that hints at a deeper truth. Other times it might be the part we played in a drama that took a turn for the worse. Sometimes it’s a little thing we did or didn’t do that ultimately made a difference in the outcome.
So in order to stay grounded, I guess we can say or tell what we want to… as long as we don’t lie to ourselves. When we believe our superficial story and omit the “dark, tarry smear of what happened”, we are doomed to let ourselves off the hook too easily. We are likely to blame the world for our conditions when we had all the power. The power that lies in seeing our own truth-- stark and bare. Owning our truth lets us walk authentically through life, dealing with what really is there, and coming to terms with what actually helps or hinders us on our journey.