is the content of a person’s pantry a fair indication of that person’s values or character? what about their closet? or their bathroom medicine cabinet? or their bookshelves? or the backseat of their car?
my pantry contains elderly cat vitamin supplements and peanut butter and 99% fat free chef boyardee mini ravioli. my closet overflows with short skirts and slinky dresses and way too many pairs of black heels and assorted cowboy boots. my medicine cabinet boasts bottles of hydrocodone and ambien i rarely take because their side effects are worse than pain or insomnia. my bookshelves hold books i’ve read and reread, mostly women’s fiction and spiritual tomes with a shelf of poetry anthologies. my car has no backseat. do these details reveal my essence?
recently i’ve reassessed my character because someone close to me asserts that i’m a worse person than i think i am. my therapist insists that i’m a better person than i think i am. i think i know who and how i am, which is mostly a good friend (except when i’m tired and don’t show up because i can’t get out of bed) and generally generous (with money and love, anyway) and reliably pure-hearted and well-intentioned (except when i’m feeling hurt and pretending not to be and am thinking nasty thoughts i don’t say). the person who claims that i’m worse than i am is probably projecting his self-judgment on me. my therapist doesn’t know enough about me to determine if i’m a good person or not. she only knows what i tell her. i only tell her what is relevant to our therapeutic goals. i’m an extremely private person, in spite of publicly blogging. you only have the opportunity to read what i decide to post. you never read what i delete. isn’t that how we all are? we show the world the mask we want them to see. but what if i let you see me, the unmasked vulnerable terrible wonderful me? what if i let you look inside? would you want to know? how much would you want to know? how much would you want me to know about you? how much are you willing to let others see you? what is in your pantry, closet, medicine cabinet, bookcase, and backseat? do these things reveal what is true about you?