Thursday, September 20, 2012

#ThursdayswithTaryn~ Age & Perception of Ourselves

The other morning before my kids left for school, I was telling Girly Girl to scoot out of my way so I could get past her and I started singing ♫I like to move it, move it...♫

Little Man chimed in and then commented that it reminded him of Madagascar and King Julien. Well, yeah, it would because he wasn't old enough to remember when that was actually a pretty popular dance mix from Reel 2 Reel that I heard in the club. I even have a cassette around here of Dance Mix music from 1994, I believe that has the original version on it. That was way before he was born!

I told the kids (9 & 13) that I used to hear it at the club. Little Man looked at me like I was speaking Greek.

"A what?"

I said, "A dance club. I used to go with one of my best friends all the time."

Girly Girl said, "yeah, but I bet you didn't dance."

I said "Of course I did. I used to shake my rump."

This elicited all kinds of giggles and laughter momentarily because even I have to admit, rump is a giggle worthy word.

When they finally stopped laughing, I told them, "I'm not know I wasn't always the frumpy housewife and stodgy mom you all know. I was young and fun once." about a revelation in my perception of myself.

I mean, I've always thought I was a pretty "hip" mom and you all know I'm the bomb-diggety, but when I find myself having to explain things to my kids like that, it really gives me a bone to chew on. I don't like the taste of it- makes me feel old and stale.

I don't think about it a lot, but the view I had of myself at 10, 20, 30 and all those ages in between and beyond represent varying degrees of my perception of myself and I'd say its like that for all of us.

My sister sent me a letter and included this list of character traits that she found online, wherein it says that characters and real people, have unique qualities called traits. It's the short-list of attributes people can have and used for examples for helping write book reports and essays. She told me what she thought were hers and what she sees in me, then asked me to look through it and pick the ones I feel most sound like me from my POV. Her point was that we are the sum of all our parts.

Here are a few she thought fit me~
  • fun-loving
  • imaginative
  • daring
  • considerate
  • smart
  • loyal
It's also funny to see someone else's perspective of ourselves. I don't imagine myself as daring by any means. In fact, I often feel timid and unsure of myself and my decisions, even at my age. I believe I am the other things she picked, but I'm also
  • plain
  • messy
  • dreamer
  • short
  •  reserved
(and a few other things)

Last night as I was trying to go to sleep and I kept thinking about it and it reminded me of my 8th grade yearbook. 15 other people's perceptions held a lot of weight and the words sweet and nice were the kiss of death for me. That and the reiterations of "don't change," "Stay the same." I was there in the middle between childhood and womanhood and I wanted to change.

I didn't want to stay the same sweet, nice girl. I wanted to be the sophisticated, beautiful woman who drew the right kind of attention from across a crowded room. I wanted to be the heroine in my own romance story and I would have given my left eyetooth to be told I was cool or cute or beautiful~ anything other than sweet or nice.

I saw myself differently, or I wanted to see myself differently— a sophisticated, beautiful, sexy grown woman. I wanted people to see me as a wild child, and not the goody-two shoes I was known to be, but I guess that wasn't built into my genetic material. If I've ever been the bad girl, the wild child, I hit my peak in my early 20s and it's been downhill since then.

Ironic then that my sister believes me to be DARING in my life NOW.

She couldn't know that about me, or could she?

Which leads me to a few questions~

What words would you use to describe yourself? Which ones would others use to describe you? Are there parallels? Do you find that some people know you better than even you know yourself?

Please feel free to come share with me today!

1 comment:

Teresa Reasor said...

Adventurous, Sassy, at times confident and at others, uncertain. And I'm old, but not dead yet.
I think our perceptions do change with age. I used to be too exhausted to even fit into a perception. Now, I'm rested enough to have a personality. I'm not afraid anymore to try anything but sky diving and bungy cord jumping.
Other than that, I'm good.
Teresa R.