I have been thinking a lot about secrets today. As an incest survivor I have a complicated relationship with secrets, maybe we all do.
As a child secrets kept me trapped in shame. I couldn’t trust the adults in my house to keep me safe and I thought it was my job to keep them protected until it became clear that it wasn’t. When it was clear that I needed to share my secrets I did.
There are all kinds of secrets. There are secrets that hurt, secrets that bring surprise, and secrets that heal. I often say that our wounds come with gifts but I hadn’t until today thought of my ability to keep secrets as a gift of my wound.
I told someone today that I keep secrets for a living. This realization brought me to tears. It is bittersweet to me. As a coach I bear witness to and keep lots of peoples secrets. In the past 20 years I have coached thousands. I’ve coached teachers, clergy, therapist, housewives, politicians, doctors, lawyers, activist, engineers, managers, bankers, authors, and the list goes on…
I hold their secrets in safe keeping, some horrible things, some deeply soulful things, but all secrets nonetheless.
Maybe the most complex secrets are the ones we keep from ourselves.