For most of my life, I was a liar.
A more charitable person might simply say I was full of delusions. Whatever you want to call it — lies, deceptions, delusions — I was full of them. The normal rules of life didn’t apply to me. I was going to be instantly successful at whatever I tried. People were going to recognize me for the superior person I was. They were going to love me, praise me, follow me, adore me.
I believed I was special. I believed others would see that.
When I was a small boy, I used to put myself to sleep every night making up stories. I was always the hero. I saved people in trouble. Other men wanted to follow me and emulate me. All the women wanted me to choose them. One of my earliest consistent stories was of rescuing a girl from a burning building. She was a classmate on whom I had a crush. After the rescue, she adored me, of course.
I grew up. I quit fantasizing about rescuing Wendy from burning buildings.
But what I didn’t realize is that the delusions didn’t go away. They grew into bigger delusions. I was still sure I was special. That faith carried me. I didn’t know the day would come when my self-deception would all come crashing down.