“Who Are You?”
2 years ago.
As I sat in my therapists office.
Staring blankly into the air.
My therapist was awaiting a response from me.
“Who are you?”
I tried to think of something clever to say.
Something that would sound good.
The way my therapist stared intently at me.
I knew this was no laughing matter.
I had nothing clever to say.
Nothing was funny.
Nothing would sound good at this moment.
I had no idea who I was.
“Who are you?”
I don’t know.
I don’t know was my response.
My therapist advised, you have a lot of work to do to figure that out.
2 years ago, I began the long journey to self.
“Who am I?”
I was never able to answer that question.
In fact, I thought that question made no sense.
“Who am I?”
I’m Gemise, duh!
I’m hungry (always hungry)
It never dawned on me how important that question was until I went through life struggles.
I got married without knowing who I was.
I expected my husband to define me.
I had children without knowing who I was.
I thought having kids would define me.
I blamed my family for inheriting dysfunction.
I expected them to fix it and then fix me.
Not even my family could define me.
That’s not how it goes.
I had to really dig deep and do an internal inventory of myself.
I figured out who I was through writing.
I found out that writing is my purpose.
Writing is my passion. I was born to write.
I thought about what my strengths were.
Areas I needed improvement in.
And areas I just suck in.
I made time for myself.
I was curious about myself.
I asked myself questions.
I read an article in O magazine, written by Anne Lamott.
Here’s how I became myself: mess, failure, mistakes, disappointments, and extensive reading; limbo, indecision, setbacks, addiction, public embarrassment, and endless conversations with my best women friends; the loss of people without whom I thought I could not live, dizzying betrayals but much greater loyalty, oh, yeah, and whenever I could, for as long as I could, I threw away the scales and the sugar.
That article truly grabbed my attention.
I kept reading.
You have to make mistakes to find out who you aren’t. You take the action, and the insight follows: You don’t think your way into becoming yourself.
I can’t tell you what your next action will be, but mine involved a full stop. I had to stop living unconsciously, as if I had all the time in the world. The love and good and the wild and the peace and creation that are you will reveal themselves, but it is harder when they have to catch up to you in roadrunner mode. So one day I did stop. I began consciously to break the rules I learned in childhood: I wasted more time, as a radical act. I stared off into space more, into the middle distance, like a cat. This is when I have my best ideas, my deepest insights. I wasted more paper, printing out instead of reading things on the computer screen.
Every single day I try to figure out something I no longer agree to do. You get to change your mind—
You can say no. No is a complete sentence.
And, secondly, you are probably going to have to deal with whatever fugitive anger still needs to be examined—it may not look like anger; it may look like compulsive dieting or bingeing or exercising or shopping. But you must find a path and a person to help you deal with that anger. It will not be a Hallmark card. It is not the yellow brick road, with lovely trees on both sides, constant sunshine, birdsong, friends. It is going to be unbelievably hard some days—like the rawness of birth, all that blood and those fluids and shouting horrible terrible things—but then there will be that wonderful child right in the middle. And that wonderful child is you, with your exact mind and butt and thighs and goofy greatness.
It felt like a light bulb went off in my head.
Over the course of 2 years, I’ve lived exactly how the author described in the article.
I made a full stop.
I let myself go.
I forgave myself.
And began living consciously.
Then I recently saw that wonderful child looking at me in the mirror.
In all of her goofy greatness!
There I was!!!!!
I asked her.
Who are you?
She responded boldly and with base in her voice!
- A Christian
- A Child of God
- A Daughter
- A Mother
- A Sister
- An Auntie
- A Friend
- A Writer
- A Blogger
- A Storyteller
- A Queen
- Soft Spoken
- Self Sufficient
- Prayed Up
I’m Working Towards…
I cant help but smile to myself.
Knowing who I am.
Acknowledging my fabulosity.
Embracing how screwed up I can be.
It’s all ME!
Look at me!
Just awakening my true self!
You, Go GIRL!
And it feels so good.
The glowage is real!
I’ve done the work.
However I still have more work to do.
We constantly evolve.
I will continue to be curious as life moves on.
I’m staring intently in your direction.
I must ask…
“Who Are You?”