I am a pathological liar. There I said it. But then, you can’t really be sure I’m not lying can you? I can honestly say I have not spoken one true word, other than “I love you, vegetables are good for you and I’m absolutely positive we can’t keep a live zebra in our backyard” to my children since 2004.
I’m not sure if I should be in the confessional every week or if my lies are deemed white lies. As explained by Sister Jean in the fifth grade white lies are not as catastrophic as a real lie. So my understanding is that I can get off the phone in a hurry if I use a white lie like “Oh shit, someone’s at the door,” and not go to hell, but if I use a real lie like “Oh shit, my house is on fire,” I’ll probably burn in hell. Get it? Actually to be honest, I don’t.
Nevertheless, I have a problem. Back in the day I lied to get out of everything. I’m not proud of this, not one bit. I actually repent this one any chance I get, ‘cause I actually told a College professor that I was undergoing surgery on my breasts. A doozie, yeah. I never actually said what I had, I was evasive, persuasive, and used a girly thing to make him feel uncomfortable (God forgive me). I did have a breast surgery but about three years earlier, so when the Professor called me on it, I was able to produce my records in a snap, and had a doctor’s note fabricated as well. I went to great lengths to get an extension in this class, imagine what would of happened if I actually applied myself? Again, God forgive me.
After graduating college I had a Rolodex of lies on my desk for any day of the week that I called in sick because I was hung-over, and well, really hung-over – “food poisoning, car broke down, emergency dental surgery, and my favorite my car broke down on the way to my dental surgery.” I changed my ways around age 26-27 and stopped cold turkey. I hated the way it made me feel and officially declared myself an adult.
I thought I had this lying thing beat, then my children started to speak and the lies just started shooting out of me, much like they did, but with much less afterbirth and pain. Now I tell lies to protect their feelings or to protect myself from any question that a) doesn’t fit into my schedule, b) is totally ludicrous, and c) well, it’s just not happening. The other day Richie asked for a dog, I said he had to be 14 years old. Thankfully, he bought it hook, line and sinker. But that’s not a lie that’s a random rule I made up that he will haunt me about till he’s 14. Then this afternoon while cruising past a Dunkin Donuts Matthew started screaming “I want donut! Peeze Mommy, peeze.” I told him they ran out and closed the store, the screaming stopped. That was definitely a lie, but come on the kid’s a sugar junkie he didn’t need it and quite frankly either did I.
A few days later the mother of all questions popped out of Richie’s mouth “Where do babies come from?” This was it for me, I either told the cold hard truth or lie again. Was I really ready to tell my soon-to-be six year old about sperm, eggs, and the harrows of childbirth? I paused, uttered a lot of ums, uh, ums, and blurted out “from my belly”, he seemed satisfied. Not so much a lie. Technically it’s true I had two c-sections. Nevertheless, I took a deep breath and decided then and there the cold hard truth can wait. My boys were still babies and until I feel they can handle the reality of the “where do babies come from” questions, that’s the only answer they’re getting. Richie may be ready in two years or when he’s 18, a mother can dream, right? Is it so horrible that he’ll be the only 18 year old that thinks kissing can knock a girl up? I realize that I may not be teaching them the best lesson, but they’ll never really know that I skirted some issues with some white lies, but I can’t lie to my children forever and at some point I’m going to have to stop. For now though if small fibs and some white lies gets us out of a few tough spots, I’ll go to confession. Not so bad, at least I’ll get 10 minutes to myself! Now when the “how do you make a baby” question comes up I’m pretty sure I can say there’s a Betty Crocker Cake Mix, right?