You think you know me? You don't have a clue. You assume that because we live in the same community, culture, and religion that you have some idea of what I am, what I like, what I believe, and what I want out of life. You are wrong.
Because we associate at work, church, and in the neighborhood, you think you are part of my world and I am part of yours. Wrong again. We dance through an existence that is shallow and false. You don't know me and I conversely don't know you. I would like to know you better but in return I would need to let you know me better, that's how it works. This I cannot do. You must only know the world I create for you to believe about me. The truth is so far from your reality that it would destroy our fragile shallow relationship if you knew the truth.
I have become expert at presenting the false shell of my existence that you see everyday. You may say that you want to know the truth me but that is a lie. Everything you have ever said, every expectation you have ever set, and every reward you have ever established has taught and reinforced to me that the real me is not what you want me to be. So I have become what you wanted, at least in appearance. Because, as you've taught me my whole life, appearance is more important than reality.
Constant wearing of my false exterior has taken a tremendous toll on me. I am scarred and shriveled up like a dried piece of fruit. My true being can barely stand the light anymore. For a long time I have loved to be alone because in being alone I can be free of this terribly heavy false exterior, the curse of my existence. I feel like I am slowly dying.
Before I died completely I became weak and slipped. I stumbled and fell and my false life began to crack along a few well worn seams. You called it sin. I called it blossoming. My God it felt good! The light poured in through those narrow cracks and slowly I began to sprout and grow. A little rain even crept in through the crack. I was very afraid of the rain. To my surprise the rain increased the spouting and growth. I began to experiment with prying open more cracks and letting in more rain. The experiment worked. I began to feel more like a watered garden and less dried and shriveled. My heart expanded and tears flowed from my newly watered garden. My God it felt good!
I'm sure I don't know what fruit my sprouted tree will bear but I know it will be delicious. How can it not when the planting and watering is so satisfying? I'm still careful to make sure you can't see more than I want you to. Some suggest it would be best to just tear down the remaining false fronts and expose the real me, but once again you presume to know me. I think I'd like to know me first.
After all the pain you've cause me and the lies you've made me drink, I'm not sure you deserve me. Why would I open myself up to your hate and scorn? I will be true to me, which may mean that I'm more false to you. Why do I care if I deceive you? I don't. I'm willing to let you live in your false thinking about me if it's to my advantage, and in our culture, I'm sure it will be.
My foundations are too deep and my connections are too strong to break completely away from you. I know that I will never be able to walk away from you completely, as much as I want to some times. It would create too much pain for those I care about. I'm actually perfectly OK with lying to you after all the lying you did to me. My revenge will be leading you on and toying with you. I know your heart too well. I know your goals and plans and motives and objectives. I can coexist in your culture very well and you won't even suspect how much I sometimes loath you. I will take the benefits I deserve and the rewards I want and leave you with the hard work of deceiving the flock.
So that's the plan for now. Ultimately, the tree of life growing in me will by itself shatter the remaining walls I built. It is certain to happen if the light and rain continue to filter in and it will because I have no plans to caulk the cracks. The genie is out of the bottle and God it feels good!
I will choose when and where to let you into my true life. I want you to see me and understand me but I don't want it to be more painful than necessary for either of us so the timing and circumstances must be just right. Perhaps, as you come to know me you will be more tender and I will let you in faster. It's really all up to you now. I'm OK with me and I'm not going back where I came from so don't ask me to. I want to love you more deeply and more truly than before. I can't do that with walls. I will continue to tear them down but only as fast as you tear down yours and it becomes comfortable for both of us to do it.