Who Are You? #scintilla
Who am I? I’ve been thinking about that question since I got the Scintilla email this morning and I don’t know that I’m any closer to answering it than I was the minute I read it.
Start big. Cis-gendered woman. Wife, daughter, sister, friend.
No one’s mother.
But what do those broad categories tell you about me?
When I turned thirty, I spent some time thinking about when I turned twenty, and how I’ve been three people since then. It was easy, then, to know exactly who I was. I wore an armor of the music I listened to, books I read, movies I watched, as if any of those things matter when looking into the heart of someone.
Okay, think back in time. What’s the identity I’ve held the longest? I was always the Smart One. Never the Pretty One. Until I wasn’t the only Smart One. Who do we become when our primary identity isn’t ours any more?
Crazy ex-girlfriend, once. Or Party Liz, which is a nickname I had when I was 19 that I didn’t learn about until I was 31. Long enough later to actually become funny instead of kind of sad. Halfway decent employee, one eye on the clock the whole time. Celiac — but am I Celiac? Or do I have it? Am I ready to become an official Sick Person? Is that Who I Am?
Writer, of course. Always. The one identity that hasn’t left me ever.
When I think about all of these identities, the ones I’ve had and the ones that I’ve lost and the ones that I purposely abandoned, I picture a Venn diagram, fluttery, a riot of colors. I think of digging down to where all of these things overlap. Is that the heart of me? Is that who I am? I feel as if I know less now than ever.
Is what I choose to tell you as important as what I don’t?
TrackBack URL for this entry: