Two weeks ago, I was working from home, as I always do and I received a phone call. The kind of phone call a girl from the Midwest will never forget. It was the producers from 20/20. Yes, I did fall on the floor in shock. I’d been vetted.
The producer called because they were doing a show on white lies that moms tell. I know, I was conflicted because I am, after all, Truthful Mommy and I’m not exactly known for my lying capabilities. Sure, I tell the occasional white lie to my children but overall, I’m not much of a liar. I’m not good at it. I never have been. My face gives me away every time.
I didn’t really want to be outed on national television as being a liar but it was 20/20, how could I say no? So, for lack of a lie to get me out of it, I agreed to let a camera crew follow me around all day….the next day. I had less than 24 hours to clean my house. Holy shit, that was the most terrifying part of all.
I was also concerned that I wouldn’t be a fit for the piece; I’m not a compulsive liar. I warned the producer but she’d read a piece I’d written on white lies and had every confidence that I could do it.
I found myself with an extreme case of the “dance Monkey, dance” syndrome. I started freaking out. I told everyone I knew because I was super excited. I enlisted my mother-in-law to come and help me scour my house. You know the one in the middle of renovations?
Thursday morning a crew showed up to follow me around and film me lie in my daily life to everyone I knew; my kids, my husband, the school, church, random neighbors and strangers. It really didn’t seem like a good idea but I was so caught up in the 20/20 high. I was so nervous that I had to pop a Xanax and I really couldn’t figure out how this was going to work. I’m Truthful Mommy not Compulsive Liar Mommy.
It was going fine, though surely lacking in the lying department, and then my girls got home. It was Thursday, so obviously they were insane. Gabi full on refused to comply with any and all requests. Bella on the other hand, came home changed into her tutu, grabbed her violin and played for the camera. She was talking in a baby voice and tap dancing and being a raging crackhead. There were no lies going on but damn it, if I had one at that moment, I surely would have said anything to pretend that this Thursday madness was not the norm. Unfortunately, it’s pretty much average on here for a Thursday after school.
So after I told everyone I know that I was being filmed and going to be on 20/20,
I was cut. It’s fine though, really, except for the part where I had to tell the entire Internet and everyone I’ve ever met in real life that I was cut. The good news is that the name of the show that Friday was Culture of Deception, so maybe that nice producer helped me to dodge a bullet. Either way, it was a once in a lifetime experience.
I learned that lying is not easy or natural for me. My kids are completely crazy on Thursdays. Television producers and crews have to deal with a lot of crazy and boy, do I have a lot of people that love me online and in real life and you people are protective.
That was my first and, probably last, television appearance but it was so much fun. I will never forget the experience or my daughter losing her mind in front of complete strangers, on film no less, and the fact that grown men listened to me pee because I was miked for 12 hours and I pee when I’m nervous. You do the math.