I believe in speaking the truth. It's very very rare that I ever tell a lie, because something in me just jumps up and bitch slaps me if I even consider it. I do also believe in knowing when to keep silent, because sometimes speaking the truth serves no purpose other than cruelty. Knowing how to change the subject without the person whose request for truth you're avoiding realizing that you just avoided a topic can be a pretty magical skill. It's also a skill that can consume a large amount of energy if you have to practice it on a constant basis.
I've been in the shadows for a long time. Not so much on the internet, but in my face to face interactions. Very few people actually know anything at all about my thoughts on spirituality, religion, magic, death, morality, etc. And avoiding speaking my true thoughts about these things has been taking up more and more of my personal resources. I live in the Bible Belt, there's some pretty serious fundamentalists here who don't hesitate to call DFS on "those Satan worshippers". BTW, to some of these people, any non-christian is automatically a "Satan worshipper". *sigh* There was a time, back before I had a child to think of, when I spent countless hours explaining the differences in Satanism, Luciferianism, Wicca, Hermeticism, Gnosticism, and many more things to these types of fundamentalists, many who happen to be part of my family. But then I got tired. And then I had someone else's welfare to think about, my child's. So I shut up. I went into a deep secrecy.
It's been 6 years now. The secrecy has accomplished what I wanted in regards to safety. Most of those people assume that I "settled down", got over my "occult obsessions", and they hint now and then that I should come to church. heh Due to the fact that in the past I didn't hide so much, these people tend to ask me a lot of pointed questions about my thoughts on religion, and occult theory. Unfortunately, the energetic drain from constant effort to speak truth but only the truth I wish to be known, has made me feel somewhat fractured. This was made really apparent to me in a session of automatic drawing recently, because what came out was literally "Fractured Woman". It took some more work to come to the conclusion of exactly what Fractured Woman was telling me.
I started thinking about just exactly why I am hiding quite so well. Of course I want my child to be safe. Every good parent wants their children to be safe. But there is a big wide grey area between blood rites in the front yard for all the neighborhood to witness and hiding as deeply as I've been. The only answer I can boil it down to regarding why I'm hiding so deeply is fear. I fear that my child won't be safe if anything, ANYTHING, is known locally about what I actually do. And... I don't like that. I shouldn't have so much fear. First off, I have common sense. Even before I went into such deep hiding, I was never a 2 pound pentacle and black lipstick type (although I have nothing against 2 pound pentacles and I think black lipstick is kinda hawt). Secondly, I know my magic works. Why wouldn't I trust it a little more when it comes to the issue of keeping my child safe from mundane repercussions of gossip? Again, I have common sense, so this shouldn't be that big of an issue. Third, I have a supportive agnostic partner. So, what the hel.
The next thing I considered is - what would I currently do differently, if I wasn't in such deep hiding. The first thing that came to mind was finding out what pagan events will be coming to my nearest city soon and attending one or two. Meeting some magical friends face to face as opposed to strictly internet contact. Not stressing that someone might see me at the local metaphysical book store. Most of my practice consists of things that I just wouldn't do or talk about publicly for many reasons, and the things that I would do differently actually seem laughable in their simplicity and harmlessness when I list them out.
Whatever it is in me that can't abide blatantly lying is boiling to the surface over the way I've fractured myself with hiding so deeply, because I have hidden deep enough to be living a lie, a secret life. I think this force is telling me that it's time to stop hurting myself this way, to trust myself more to keep my child safe without completely mutilating who I am with obsfucation and silence.
Forcing myself into silence about this also fostered a level of silence in me about other things that I strongly believe in. I used to speak out often for causes such as environmentalism, GLBT rights, feminism, etc. but I silenced myself on these issues too. Again, out of fear of repercussions. As a bisexual female earthlover, this silence was also particularly fracturing.
I've come to the decision that at some point, I have to take the cross off my back, and quit sacrificing myself to safety. I must teach my child what they need to know, put myself back together and pull off the veil. Learn to show my magical face a little more while covering my magical ass, so to speak.