Last Thursday night, before Jack was preparing to return to the University…
I am a truthful person. Yes, I may have once said that the lime green color was great for a bridesmaid dress, but she did not pick it anyway, so no harm no foul. I may have hedged a bet or two, but overall, I am honest.
Given this declaration, I believe others are entitled to their opinions and truths. Some of us are more open about feelings and thoughts than others. As an Italian, I do not shy away from conversations except, religion and politics. Ask me a question and I will give you my full attention.
Then why is it so hard to tell the truth now?
If you ask me my weight, I just might sock you.
If you ask me my bra size, well, I will have to think about that one.
If you ask me my age, I never lie. I am happy for each birthday that comes my way.
If you ask me who my favorite child is, well, poor Amelia. (hee-hee)
Questions and answers have taken on a new meaning in this age of COVID-19 and coronavirus. A simple ‘how are you’ is quite a loaded question. People are afraid and cautious. We ask each other how we feel and how we are doing, but do we really want to know the answer, and worse yet, do we tell the truth?? Why not?
Go ahead, ask me.
Ask me if I am worried about my family, my business, and my health. “Yes I am.”
Ask me how I feel when the days are just melting into one another. “I’m scared.”
Ask me how hard it was to say goodbye to my brother-in-law at his wake sitting amongst only 10 family members in masks, six feet part. “It was surreal.”
Each morning Chip and I walk a 5K at 5:45 am. Rarely do we see another person and if we do, they bolt into oncoming traffic to avoid being less than 20 feet from us. We each give a low wave to each other and quickly move on. I miss the days of petting people’s dogs and talking about the weather.
Why are we so afraid to speak of the elephant in the room? No one did anything wrong. No crimes were committed, no bad business deals, no foolish decisions. I am no counselor or psychologist. I am not trained in helping people and the instruments in my tool bag have been banned. I cannot hug you. I cannot kiss you, and I cannot even sit across the table from you and tell you it is going to be all right.
I fear I am losing my ability to find the upside, the humor.
Do you need to bare your soul?
Most likely not. Compassion and understanding knows no bounds. My days are filled with difficulties, just like yours. My Women Who Wine Zoom meeting convenes weekly. We are all business women struggling with professional and personal challenges, but we tell the truth. It is cathartic, healing, and scary but transcends the feelings of fear and loss. We migrated from monthly dinners to weekly calls to keep the communication open and the laughter stronger than ever. I thank you ladies and I look forward to every Thursday evening.
I have taken calls from clients daily looking for support and talking through the business challenges they are faced with, coupled with financial and family worries. I hope I help them. Their honesty and frankness heal us both for different reasons.
There are two chairs in front of my house.
I will move them 6-feet apart and don my mask. We can share a cup of coffee or just kibitz about the family, the pizza we made Friday night, or a new cocktail you tried that was just outrageous.
Do not close your door, your mind, or your heart. I have not. We can be safe and be human. So when I ask you, “How are you?”, if you feel so inclined, tell me the truth and know that the available chair near my front door is open if you would like to visit.