We all lie to our children. Some are simple sweet lies like Santa Claus, and the Easter Bunny, and then, there are other lies that are a bit deeper. You could even define them as existential.
We are not intentionally lying to them; we are just lying to ourselves because the truth doesn’t really help… it doesn’t make anything easier.
1. ‘Be yourself!’
It’s true, of course I want them to be themselves.. just an educated, tantrum-free and tamed version of themselves. Total oxymoron. 🙄
2. ‘You don’t cease to exist when you die, nor does your hermit crab or your fish. They are still with us. We are energy, and energy can’t be destroyed: it can only be transformed…’
It’s not like I made this up. According to physics, it’s basically true, but no one has come back from the other side to assure me that I will be around for them in some way… I hope I will.
3. ‘I will always be there for you…’
We all say this to them, and to the people we love. It’s kind of true; I will always be there for them, until the day I won’t. Plus life happens, and it gets tricky to identify when they really need you as they grow older and face the world silently having conversations you are not aware of, and living their own lives.
4. ‘There is no such thing as monsters!’
Well… I know there are. Plenty. Open any newspaper, and you will agree with me. They are human, and the worst part is they don’t look half as terrifying as they do in the movies, making it SO hard to identify them.
5. ‘When you grow up, you’ll understand…’
No, they won’t. I haven’t. You don’t. You forgive, you forget, you let go, but being an adult doesn’t make it easier to understand anything; it just makes it even more confusing. You just learn to live with unanswered questions.
6. ‘Everything is going to be alright.’
I remember saying this to them while we were going through Irma, and specially when I was in Mexico in the midst of the earthquake speaking to them on the phone. I had no idea if I was going to get out of there alive. It felt as if the world was about to end. But I promised to them that everything was going to be alright, and that I would be hugging them again soon. At least, this time, it was true, but we never know, we can only hope.
7. ‘I know what I’m doing.’
This is the mother of all lies. I have no idea how to parent, and most of the time, I don’t even understand the choices I make, but hell do I try my best with what I’ve been given. And so do you, I’m sure.
So yes, we all lie to our children, but most certainly, they will repeat these lies to their children as well, and as they do, they will feel a twitch of nostalgia and gratefulness to those days when everything was all right in their minds, because their parents said so.
Pictures: Celia D. Luna
Outfit: Top Shop/ Aventura Mall