How Getting Busted Created Freedom For Me

Tonight I was on a zoom call for the people who are volunteering for a course being held this weekend. I was there on time and did my perfunctory smile and wave to everyone.

The organizer was talking and then people started sharing. I was listening, I thought, as I texted a new guy who’s a potential date. He wanted me to pick a place to meet next week. I hadn’t replied because I couldn’t think of a good restaurant.

“All I’ve been out for is margaritas and nachos, since COVID started,” I said. “They are my favorite things,” I added.

“That’s fine. I love them. That is perfect,” he said.

I sent him the address. I don’t know what time, yet, but wow, I have a date.

I was engrossed in my thoughts until I heard the organizer say, “And why don’t you pick the next person to share.”

She’ll never pick me, she doesn’t even know me, I thought.

“Hilary,” the young lady said.

“Everyone loves Hilary,” another organizer said.

Shit, I thought. I have no idea what they are sharing about. I don’t think I can fake this one.

“What are we sharing about?” I asked, trying to be cute in my delinquency.

“I’m not going to tell you,” the man said.

CRAP. “OK, then I will have to admit, I was on my phone and not paying attention,” I said. I looked around. No one was going to help me. I went for it.

“I think I know what you were talking about. About the course starting. For me, I never know why I am reviewing this course. I wonder why each year. Until, we get there on Friday at 2:00 and I see everyone I love and the course starts. And then I remember why.”

“And then what?” the organizer asked.

“I pay attention for a few minutes, and then I go back on my phone and check my emails,’ I said, wondering why I just admitted that.

He asked me who I wanted to hear from next and I picked a friend of mine. Her share was deep and meaningful and I wondered what the hell was wrong with me. Why did I admit how bad I am? Why didn’t I just pretend to be good and make up an answer?

I stewed about it for about 10 minutes. Then I remembered. I am Getting Real with Hilary. That was real. Pretending I am good is not real. In truth, I like to make trouble. It is way more fun.

I forgave myself and paid attention for most of the remainder of the call.

Towards the end, I saw my what’s app blowing up. The organizer was now sending chats to the group. He was ON HIS PHONE sending chats. Seriously? And here I had felt bad for being on my phone?

I chuckled. Isn’t life a riot?

Thanks for listening.

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