Okay, I admit it. I was inspired to write about secrets because of Project Runway. I know it’s on Lifetime now, but I don’t care. I’m a loyal fan of the show. As far as reality shows are concerned, at least this one has fashionable people who are talented, creative, unafraid to speak their mind and follow their vision even though Heidi Klum, Michael Kors or Nina Garcia may criticize their work. I have a deep respect for the imagination, skill and ingenuity it takes to perform in that kind of a pressure situation. And, duh! I like really amazing, well-designed clothes. But, that’s not really the point.
Spoiler Alert! If you haven’t watched yet and care about what happens, stop reading because I’m writing about a big confession from the episode.
On tonight’s episode, Mondo revealed that he’s been carrying a painful secret for the past ten years. He revealed that he’s HIV positive and he hasn’t been able to tell anyone because his family is religious and conservative. He knows they will judge him and rather than lose their love or cause them pain in any way, he’s held this in. He used this secret as the inspiration for his design and created an outfit that turned a very painful situation into an absolutely, beautiful one. Watching him reveal this secret to the rest of the designers and the judges transformed him from a self-conscious, introverted, quirky guy into the personification of pure joy and freedom.
The telling of a big secret is a powerful experience. It’s a liberation, an unchained moment where fear is released and love is just allowed to be. Secrets are like a nagging spouse, holding you prisoner to the “what-if” in your head. Secrets are dangerous. They can destroy your dreams. They can turn you into the kind of person you never thought you could be. They can, at their worst, take your life.
I don’t really like secrets, but I have respect for them. When asked, I can and will keep a secret. Lock it in the vault until I forget I ever knew only to remember when it reveals itself. Secrets always reveal themselves. They are an itch longing to be scratched. I don’t really like secrets, but I have a lot of them.
Secrets are a way for me to gauge my ability to be intimate with another. To understand how close I am willing to be with you and how open you are willing to be with me. I reveal myself like a nervous swimmer dipping her toe in to test the waters. If the water feels good, I’ll go a little deeper. If the water feels great–look out! Cannonball!
At their core, secrets stand in the way of truth. They feel like protection, but they aren’t. Even thinking about sharing one now has me contemplating whether or not I should just delete this entire post and go to bed. Try to forget I was even thinking about secrets. But that wouldn’t be honest. How could you trust me if I wasn’t willing or able to tell you a secret, right here, right now? What do I reveal that doesn’t sound contrived or forced? So, here it goes…
I don’t want to spend my life alone. But, I’ve made such terrible relationship choices with men in the past, that somewhere along the way, I stopped trusting myself. I stopped making any choices. And now, I am the very thing I never wanted to be. I could try to minimize it by telling you I have amazing friends and a close-knit family you would want to adopt and call your own. But the truth is, at night when the only thing cutting through the silence is the wind whistling against the window, it feels unbearable.
So, what’s yours?