I am a pathological liar. I don’t know why, I just am. Things escape my lips far before I have a time or even a chance to think about them. I didn’t choose to be this way…and it’s silly to say that it chose me. Nothing ever really chooses one person, does it? No, instead, it just…came to be.
What’s surreal about it is that my lies, become not only my truth, but the truth. Yes, I have run with the Bulls in Spain (once a lie). I have three potential jobs, but not because I want them. I have them because I lied at first, and then worked hard to get them. I tried being the incentive for my best friend to do better than I, and when he didn’t believe I actually had landed the interviews, I worked to make them happen…and so he could drive me there as proof.
See, Lies aren’t simple things. They learn, grow, and eventually you get caught up in them. They start simple, like in 6th grade when your dog ate your homework, when actually you didn’t do it because who the hell cares about when the train will get to Albuquerque if it left New Orleans at 6 pm and had to make 8 stops of five minutes or more? They go from being harmless, to overwhelming in 2.2 seconds, with no turning back.
Instead of being overwhelmed, I viewed it as a gift. I viewed it as my inspiration, my drive, my muse. Lie about the things you want, only to get the things you want. Lie to yourself as many times as it takes for you to believe you’re beautiful, not just another face in the crowd. If you do it enough it just…happens.
So is being a pathological liar really that bad then? Or is it just as messed up and delusional as I think it is?
I’m stuck. Stuck in a town where a lot of people get stuck. Little Old Swartz Creek, Michigan. You either make it, or you don’t. I want so badly to make it, but I’m not sure I will. It’s my number one fear, failure. This fear keeps me going. This fear, and my lies. The lies that will eventually make me, but not yet. Not as a 22 year old who doesn’t know what she’s doing. Not the 22 year old who’s on academic suspension from Michigan State University because she couldn’t hack it the last semester. No, as of this moment, I’m 100% lost, and stuck. Stuck and lost. Whatever you want to call it. Right now? I’m calling it failure. I’m right where I never wanted to be again. Living with my folks, in my childhood bedroom, with my 19 year old genius brother away at school, and the other little brother just a sophomore in high school.
Yep. Did not want to be here again.
Everyone says it’s just a transition. Do I believe that? Yes. I want that transition to happen now, though. I want that transition to be past, and I want to be where ever the hell it is that I am going. Where is that, though? Where is my destiny laying? It can’t be here, in this town. I was the one who was always going to get out.
It’s funny how it’s the place we want to run away from that we usually always come back to.
I hadn’t started lying yet, as I said before. But, oh, here it comes. The phone call.
He said we were breaking up. This, I had been expecting. “It’s okay,” I murmured, “ I had a job lined up in Boston anyways. I leave in three weeks…I just didn’t know how to tell you. I guess it works out better this way.”
There’s the first lie.
The lie that would determine my path, the lie that I would fight hard to make true. The lie, that would later become my reality.
“Boston?” he asked.
Fuck. “Yes, Boston.” Why couldn’t I have picked a city where I knew people?! Or knew about, anyways. All I knew about Boston was that the Red Sox played there and that it was full of History.
“Do you even know where Boston is?” Reason #1 why I wasn’t upset we were breaking up, he’s condescending.
“Massachusetts. I’m not an idiot.”
“Well, I’m obviously using my degree. PR, if you must know.” I answered.
“You don’t have a degree.” Reason #2, he’s an asshole.
“Whatever. Good luck with whatever you decide to do.” I hung up.
Why did I have to lie? I didn’t, actually…but I felt pressured to do so. Pressured to let him know my world didn’t revolve around him, like he was certain it did. Pressured to get out of this town.
So. Much. Pressure.
Where to go from here? He lived just down the street from me, and we had been dating since high school. He’d know if I was at home, he’d know if I had actually left. I’ve just screwed myself. I had to find a job, in Boston, in two days. TWO DAYS. I was screwed.
What jobs were there in Boston? What PR jobs were there? And, the best question: what company would hire a Communications Junior who didn’t have a degree and wasn’t attending school? Not many, if any.
I stood up and looked in my mirror. Analyzing my face, the one I think could be much better with just a few not-so-simple procedures, and my little bit chubby stomach with the palm-tree belly button ring in it. I analyzed myself in my blue boy-short underwear and wife-beater,“I am beautiful,” I thought, “I can get any job, any guy and any thing I want. I just have to work for it.”
I woke up the next morning to the birds chirping and the sun peaking through my shades. I immediately shut the window. I hate hearing the birds in the morning. Really, I do. I know it may make me a negative person, but is it so much as to ask for perfect silence while I’m trying to sleep in?
Apparently it is, seeing as how not even two seconds later I heard my dad yelling for my brother. This is why I cannot stay here. Then I remembered.
Remembered the lie, Boston, the job, and how I only had one day to pack up, find a job, and leave. I couldn’t go through with it. What would my parents say? I didn’t have a plan. I always had a plan.
I got my laptop from under my bed and opened to Google. I didn’t even know where to begin. In hindsight, I don’t know why I even went there…but Craigslist was my first site. Boston & PR jobs were easy to find…but not together. Until I struck gold with…nothing. Nothing was the answer. It was an adventure, a new part of my life. Just get up and go, no plan, no expectations, just me. I could always come home…God, I hope I don’t have to come home.
It was then and there I decided I didn’t care anymore. Here were my lies: I had a job in Boston, and a place to live. I had friends out there, and I was embarking on the best part of my life so far.
Well, okay, I guess the last part was already a truth. I was scared to death about my decision, but knew it was the right choice for me. I was pointing my car East and I wasn’t looking back. It was time for a change. I was ready.
It was a five minute conversation. One where I lied…about everything. Lying about my job, where I was working and who I was working for. A five minute conversation that made me realize how much I missed him, and my life. A conversation that mentioned how ‘I wish you were here with me…it’d be so much more fun. Plus, I can run things by you and you’d look at them differently’.
After that conversation, it wasn’t going to be a good night. I just had to remember what he told me, about how I do better on my own.
On my own. Those words never really spoke to me, and now they could fill volumes. On your own. That means paying bills, living on food stamps and being late for rent each month. Those words mean no help from your family, all you can rely on is yourself.
Why did I think this would be the adventure of a lifetime? Why did I think this was a good idea?
The only thing is, I couldn’t turn back now. It was possible, yes, but to be humiliated and live in the Creek for another year while I got my act together? Talk about humiliating. Not only that, but it’d be like failing at life…again.
That just wasn’t going to happen. I looked in my bathroom mirror, pushing the tears away from my face. “You are a brilliant, hard-working woman who can do anything she puts her mind to. You are beautiful, You are sophisticated and you deserve everything you earn and work hard for.” I sighed and splashed some water on my face. New tears just kept flowing. I couldn’t afford it, but I knew what I needed. To kick start my own ass into not failing.
I normally trust everyone, without question. I like to believe that people are just, good. It’s hard for me to see otherwise, even though I know that’s the truth. I trust them not to hurt me, to do what they say they will, and to live up to my expectations.
I realize that the last part is a bit extensive, yes, but really. Is it too hard to live up to what I believe someone can be? I didn’t realize until I took a good long hard look at myself in that mirror, that, well, I’m not living up to my own expectations.
Two days had gone by and here I was, still sitting in my bedroom, looking for a place to live. There was one thing I needed to do indefinitely. Reclaim my life. These lies, they were big. How was I going to pull them off? I wasn’t. I was going to be called out, called a liar and a phony. I wasn’t about to let that happen. I took my position in front of the mirror again, took a deep breath and pushed the hair out of my eyes.
Then I screamed. As loud as I could, letting all of my frustration and anger out. Letting all of the disappointment and hurt escape my lips. My mind was blank, and I was at peace. There were three things I needed to do before I left. Pack, color my hair, and make a playlist.
Black. That was the new me. Black hair and a kickass attitude. Long and shiny, hot. A physical change was just what I needed to make this mental change, and now I was ready. My ‘empowerment’ playlist ready to go, I looked in the mirror one again. It was a new me. Ready to take on my own world, and my lies.
I had to make them true. I wasn’t a liar. Staring at myself, picking out the ‘problems’, I knew I had the power to change them all. Starting right then. I felt empowered, strong, ready to take them on. I picked up the duffle bag I had randomly thrown things into, grabbed my car keys and left.
The open road, in spite of what I thought, wasn’t all that fun. Just long stretches of nothingness, nothing on the radio, nothing in the hick-towns I drove through, and nothing to help me figure anything out. Vast plains and valleys of absolutely nothing.