April 18

HONESTY MONTH: DAY 18: “If a man asks me for my loyalty…I will give him my honesty.

If a man asks me for my honesty…I will give him my loyalty!” ― John Boyd

I spent some time today with this quote. I really liked it when I chose my quotes for the month, and I still do. Just could not figure out how to write about this one.

I have been involved with several groups that demanded or required (usually demanded) my loyalty, rather than my honesty.

The first one was my family. They required me to not talk to others about what happened in our home. My parents were big fans of “What will the neighbors think?” I did not care what people thought about them. I knew it was a train wreck and talked a lot about things at home with people I thought could help me out. My family knew nothing about honesty, so I gave them no loyalty or trust. They just demanded it, like they demanded that I respect them. I never did, still don’t.

The next group were the outlaw bikers that I ran to for help with my family, to keep them off my back. It worked, but again, I did not trust them. They did not tell the truth, and I knew they would turn on me on a dime! So, I gave them no loyalty. It was a brotherhood, so I was not “one of” them, by virtue of the fact that I was female. My part was very different there.

The next group that demanded my loyalty was the U.S. Air Force. Now THERE is a joke! There was so much disrespect and dishonesty shown me in that setting that I could not imagine being any kind of loyal to them, to anything they stood for, any of it. Not one shred of respect or integrity. That is my experience.

I have had employers who asked for my loyalty. I am not going to do that.

I was loyal to my husband in all the ways I knew to be. I respected him because I knew who he was. An old member of the same “brotherhood” I had run with in my younger days. He was heartbroken when that “brotherhood” consistently failed to live up to their pledges of loyalty.

He was also a veteran of the war that broke so many people; and where the loyalty of the nation got him spit on and called names. He was devastated when he came home and was spit upon and where things were thrown at him that the two men carrying his stretcher off the plane stumbled and dropped him and he had to have another 12 hours of surgery to re-fix the pins holding his leg together. He could not talk about that without crying, even nearly 40 years later.

What a great experience that HE was the person I fell in love with. How his story and mine intertwined, many years after we first met. How powerfully his life impacts my life, still today, many years after his death. There are no mistakes in this world. We got to walk through tremendous amounts of healing together and I still do today.

This is about loyalty and honesty. I do not want to live in a world where either is no longer available to me. I won’t give them away for nothing. They must be earned. And today I know why and how. I have had tremendous examples of how this all works!

Published by: Kelly

I am a therapist and counselor with long-term recovery from addictions and personal trauma. My writing reflects these experiences and the road I have traveled in 12-Step recovery settings, along with the work I have done for over 30 years in the field. My love of dolphins includes the stories of them being healers in places all over the world. I long to offer every broken spirit and body the experience of a healing hug. May my words and stories inform, uplift and delight your spirit and soothe your weary heart.

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