Lauren’s True Lies

I felt this last read point to what truth really represents throughout the memoir. What is truth according to Lauren? Dr. Neu tells Lauren that “trickery is so hinged to your personality style, and, therefore, you were only being true to yourself”(202). It seems as if Lauren herself was symbolized as a lie, and standing as a lie, she stood true to how a lie is defined. Lauren states “I hid…through lies, but at the same time, every tale I told expressed a truth”(207). It’s like the truth is there somewhere in the mix, but as Lauren states in chapter one, “I exaggerate”(3). As she further goes on to say, it can be confusing in regards to how the truth is expressed; the whole idea in what a metaphor does. Lauren uses metaphors throughout the memoir faithfully. When at her daily AA meetings she describes her epilepsy as alcoholism, the metaphor, epilepsy is alcoholism. She feels she tells the truth at each meeting, as both alcoholism and epilepsy share similar symptoms. Later on, a sorrowful Lauren can’t help but feel like a “liar”(208); she feels that her tale is surrounded by “smoke”(210), as it wasn’t the “true tale”(210). The tale she told was covered by a metaphor, the smoke. She told her co-members everything about her so called epilepsy and what it had caused her over the years; she just covered the word epilepsy with alcoholism.

By the end of this section it appears as if Lauren kind of asks, what is truth and what is fact? She asks this in an attempt of showing how time evolves the term “fact”(215); she tries to show just how “real” (217) her experiences were. At one point in history, fact was that demons were the cause behind epilepsy. Fact today points out how epilepsy is caused by a medical condition, not demons; who’s to say that from today there won’t be another rising fact explaining the cause of epilepsy or any other factor we may think our facts can explain. Another point made between differing facts is when Lauren believes her auras to be of the spiritual kind, Dr. Neu simply notes them as part of her medical condition. Here we have two arguing forces debating the facts to what causes Lauren’s auras.

In the afterword Lauren describes this book as a nonfiction memoir, and though it’s not told in “historical truth”(219), it’s told in “narrative truth”(219). Narrative truth is exemplified in the quotes above; she tells the truth in the form of metaphors. She states how, “the figurative truth means more than the literal”(208). As revealed Lauren represents a lie, a metaphor to be precise. When she speaks, she speaks in metaphors. When she writes, she writes in metaphors. Her whole memoir is a metaphor, thus she is staying true to Dr.Neu’s diagnosis as quoted above.

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