*In no particular order and not a complete list of things I have been told over my lifetime.
That I am quirky, unique, strong, brave, smart, angry, hateful, a surly motherfucker, F’ing nuts, that I’ve been considered as a reason to commit suicide, my hair is too big to take me seriously, it was only about the money, stand-up comedy is so easy anyone could do it. That I’m stubborn, unclear, unrealistic, inspirational, funny, skinny, chunky, I have kind eyes, a big heart and I march to the beat of a different drummer.
That I’m annoying, not worth listening to, too intense, my love life is pathetic, I’m intimidating, I’m wrong, I slouch, I should never get trapped by my salary, I write like a writer, I smoke too much weed, I have special blood, a quiet confidence and an attitude problem. That I’m gay, straight, bisexual, bipolar, honest, brilliant, and I look like a boy.
That I’m bossy, I think I'm perfect, I have to have the last word, I think I’m always right, I’m opinionated, I’m hysterical, I’m lazy, insane, the sane one, I'd be a good mom, I require too much of a learning curve, I’m quick, I’m on the ball, I should have been a lawyer, I'm not doing my job, I'm good at my job, a fuck up, rebellious, disrespectful, mean, a bitch, trustworthy, a smart ass, an all-star, a dork, adorable, cool, hot, cold, warm, a loner, a social butterfly, a unifier, an explorer, adventurous, depressed, missed, worried about, a renaissance woman, a mentor, insightful, defiant, creative, too logical, ridiculous. To own it, to create my own opportunities, to pull over & let myself out of the car in the middle of the NYS thruway at 9pm.
That I should give up, keep going, get help. That I'll figure it out myself, that therapy isn't helping me, that being with me was a drunken mistake, that people are proud of me. That I'm admired, a rock, awkward. That I’m a Catholic, an atheist, an agnostic, a Buddhist and definitely a Jew.
That he’ll always be my father. That I have a sense of where people are coming from, a great sense of direction, I’m lacking direction and lost. I’m intuitive, give good advice, clingy, anal, a liar. I've outstayed my welcome. That it gets better, it's all downhill from here, I think too much, I should leave a quarter if I borrow a Q-tip, I’m great at networking, I’m secretly in charge, I need to put myself out there more, I didn't do my due diligence, I went above and beyond expectations, I have too many walls up, I was exactly the right person at a very important moment, I have good instincts, a genuine laugh, I’m a tortured genius, I talk too much, I'm shy, I’m outgoing, I’m fun, I was a scribe in ancient Egypt.
That I did the right thing, I made a big mistake, I have so much potential, I take the party up a notch, I’m crazy for picking people up from the airport, I'm generous, my opinion is respected, my feelings are inaccurate, I must have done something terrible in a past life, I’m one of those people that great things just happen to, that people don’t know how to help me, that people don’t have friends like me, that people who get close to me must be idiots, that it would be awful to live inside my head and that I should go to the ladies room if I’m going to pick my teeth. That I am over-sensitive, over-bearing, over-reacting, over-analyzing, over-thinking.
The point is that I have felt loved and hated, idolized and ignored. Sometimes all by the same person. I have experienced too many mixed messages coming from too many disparate sources to ever truly know which to believe and when. And I’ve added my share.
So while I want and appreciate the honest opinions and feedback of others, in the end I am the only one who can decide which of the above are true. And I feel qualified to do that because I feel I have a decent understanding of who I am and what I believe. More importantly for me, I take the time to understand why I believe it. And more importantly still, that answer is never “because ______ believes it”. I simply refuse to be someone I’m not based on the expectations of others. It’s just who I am. Knowing that is what slows down the wheels in my head and gives me one consistent guiding voice; my truth.
I find that there is so much less chaos in the truth. Own it. Use it. Grow. Keep Moving Forward.
I finally feel ready(ish) to share that voice…with all 5 of you that are still reading…because these are the things I think about.