I guess in order for you to understand my happiness project, it would help to know who I am. The only problem is...I'm not really sure if I know who I am.
Don't get me wrong, I mean, I can tell you what I do... I can tell you how I spend my days, I can tell you how long I have been married, my philosophies on child-rearing, why I hate my Algebra class... Hell, I can even tell you how to make a great finishing powder. But that's just what I do, It's not who I am. At least, it's not who I want to be... I don't want to be defined as just a wife, or a mother, or a student, or a business owner... As much as I LOVE those parts of my life - I just don't want that to be all there is of me... It's one thing to know your place in society, but I want to really know who I am on a deeper level.
*So I did a little experiment, I asked a few people what they would tell someone who has never met me, about me in order for that person to know "who I am."
This is the exact same phrase I used with everyone I presented this question to:
"If you were to describe me to someone who had never met me, in order for them to know or understand who I am, what would you tell them?"
These are the exact responses I received (no omitting of information/descriptions given):
My husband of 7 years: "Ambitious, with lots of good ideas. Accepting of others and open-minded, while still firm in your beliefs. Friendly, passionate, helping, and headstrong. And you're purdy."
My 6 year old (and only) daughter: "My mom is 'Miss Kim.' She has black hair which is gold on top. She has glasses. She's pretty. She's kind. She's the bestest mommy, and I love my mommy."
My mother: "A very unique individual and very creative. A great sense of style - but it is definitely your own style. Very loving and caring."
A woman I have known for about 2 years (she is a neighbor, a fellow Army wife, and a very close friend IRL): "Fun. Always busy. Sassy, but in a good way."
A woman that I have known for a few months (she is an internet/phone friend - not someone I know IRL. However, I would still consider her a good friend): "An incredibly supportive Military wife. Dedicated to your children. Hard-working and talented, and has a successful MMU (mineral makeup) company. A bit of a spitfire. You're honest, and you love with your whole heart. And you like to curse! But that's funny :)"
A woman that I have known for a few months (she is an internet/phone friend - not someone I know IRL. However, I consider her one of my best friends ever!): "Two words: Grown and Sexy!" - This might not mean a lot to anyone else, but it is a big inside joke for the two of us and I rather enjoy that she used it in this context.
Last night when I was thinking about what I would be posting today, I was really nervous about it. I kept going over and over what I would say to you all about myself. I'd love to be able to tell you that I am the perfect candidate for 'Mother of the Year.' Or that I am the ultimate 50's goddess housewife with sparkling floors, spending my days in heels and meeting my husband at the door with a martini in my perfectly manicured hand. I desperately want to tell you that I am always patient and kind and slow to anger... And so many wonderful and beautiful (and mostly bullshit) answers...
This is what I really had to say about myself last night:
I am stubborn. I can be lazy and at times I procrastinate. I am too harsh with my children, often getting upset with them or becoming too strict. I am quick to talk, but slow to listen. I can be uncaring, unloving, and judgemental. I often make snide remarks to husband when I am hurt, just to make him angry. I complain too much, I worry too much, sometimes I can be selfish and ungrateful. I'm fat. I'm not pretty enough. I'm never the best. And yet I still manage to be narcissistic and vain. My house is never, ever completely spotless, and I don't wash my hair everyday. I cuss too much and pray too little. I wait too long to pluck my eyebrows..." And honestly, this list could have gone on and on... One negative thing after another...
*This is where we come back to the beginning of today's post*
I asked my family and my friends to describe me - Just for fun, and for a blog post, and to see what they would say...
They spoke of me with such kindness and sincerity. Listing one good thing about me after another. They were not negative. They were not harsh or mean. Their words made me literally cry from joy. Maybe I am not as imperfect as I think I am Maybe for all of the wrong I feel that I do, maybe I do somethings right as well...
And then a thought occurred to me that I never expected
I speak about myself as if I HATE myself
I say horrible and nasty things to myself on a regular basis. Maybe even the way someone would speak of their worst enemy. I would never say such things to my mom, or my friends. I would never treat another human being this way.. Yet I say them to myself
What a humiliating realization...
I started today's blog and did this experiment to find out if I could get some insight into who I am, based on the opinions of others.
But you know what? It doesn't matter if my husband thinks I'm pretty, or if my friends think I am nice or caring, or even if my children think that I am a good mama. Nothing that anyone can say about me matters, not until I can see it for myself.
*If you only take one thing from this post, I hope it is this:
"Nothing you hear with your ears will EVER rival what you hear with your heart."
If you hold hate in your heart for yourself, all you will see is that hate. All you will see is that negativity. You will never see any of the beauty that you really are. You will never see the amazing and wonderful things that others see in you, until you learn to love yourself. I mean truly, and honestly, love yourself.
Which leads me back to my original question...
Who am I?
Honestly, I'm not really sure yet, I'll have to get back to you on this one...
What I do know is that I am a girl who is learning to fall in love with herself. A girl who is learning to forgive herself...
And I think that is a great place to start...