OK, just for the record, this post theme was thought up when I was stoned in my shed talking to Ms Meow. Now that i am writing it, i am not stoned at all and wondering what the hell i was thinking. Anyway.....
Who are you? Who am I? When I used to go to a therapist, that question, or some variation of it, was the first question they asked. I mean, lots of times when you meet someone this is the first question they ask. At least I do. I am super awkward when I meet people and if I start feeling weird and can't run away or find someone i know to cling to, I blurt shit out. One of my default word vomits is "So who are you?" The answer is usually different depending on the situation.
For a therapist: "Well I am Katy, i live around here. I am married to a really great guy and I have 2 cats." I do not intro with my past mental health issues. I have mentioned here before, I stopped going to therapists because once they hear about my past I turn into a fascinating object of study instead of a person who is there because she desperately needs someone to talk to that can suggest reasonable coping skills and can give unbiased opinions on just how crazy she is acting.
For a new persona at a party: "I'm Katy, i live around here, i am married and i have 2 cats. They are really cute, wanna see pictures!?"
For a new Co-worker: "Hi, I am Katy, i am the IT person, I fix all the stuff that has a plug. Don't be afraid to call me if you have any questions, I can answer a lot of things or i can help you find someone that can."
See? Several different types of answers to Who are you. But what is the answer when you ask yourself Who you are. Who is the person you are trying to be. Do you even know? Do you like that person? I try to live a life that when I look in the mirror and ask myself that, I am proud of the answer, I want to be proud of the person in the mirror and I should really like her. Sometimes i get lost, and i forget that i should be asking myself who i am, and not defining who i am by what others expect me to be. I did that once and what i saw in the mirror was not someone i liked. So i changed. It was hard and it hurt a lot because I lost a lot of people who i thought were my friends. I have done this change several times, its called growing up I believe. Now I like myself. I like my authentic personality, I like my response to who i am. I have written before the answer to Who am i in my post "Being a Women in IT" and I liked it a lot. I forgot to mention in it though, I have 2 cats, wanna see pictures?!!
I am just Katy. I am a special ed student who was hospitalized twice for mental issues as a teenager. As an adult I had worked my way up to be an IT Manager at a nation wide company despite being discriminated against for being a women. I started out in IT without a college degree and then only going to school online. I own my own house and pay my mortgage on time, I have bought and paid off a car on my own, I have lived by myself in the past and I paid the down payment on my house out of my own savings. I am in a healthy marriage to a Union Boilermaker and we are planning on starting a family soon. I have good friends, I have a family and in-laws that love me. I curse, I get crazy sometimes, and I often make mistakes. I have a lot to learn about life and everything, but I am a strong, proud women and I don't give a fuck what anyone else thinks about me.
A quote from Douglas Adams Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (one of my very favorite books of all time). A moment where a whale had to answer the question "Who am I" in a very short span of time. Here is a link to the Youtube video of the movie version of this moment.
“Another thing that got forgotten was the fact that against all probability a sperm whale had suddenly been called into existence several miles above the surface of an alien planet.
And since this is not a naturally tenable position for a whale, this poor innocent creature had very little time to come to terms with its identity as a whale before it then had to come to terms with not being a whale any more.
This is a complete record of its thoughts from the moment it began its life till the moment it ended it.
Ah … ! What’s happening? it thought.
Er, excuse me, who am I?
Why am I here? What’s my purpose in life?
What do I mean by who am I?
Calm down, get a grip now … oh! this is an interesting sensation, what is it? It’s a sort of … yawning, tingling sensation in my … my … well I suppose I’d better start finding names for things if I want to make any headway in what for the sake of what I shall call an argument I shall call the world, so let’s call it my stomach.
Good. Ooooh, it’s getting quite strong. And hey, what’s about this whistling roaring sound going past what I’m suddenly going to call my head? Perhaps I can call that … wind! Is that a good name? It’ll do … perhaps I can find a better name for it later when I’ve found out what it’s for. It must be something very important because there certainly seems to be a hell of a lot of it. Hey! What’s this thing? This … let’s call it a tail – yeah, tail. Hey! I can can really thrash it about pretty good can’t I? Wow! Wow! That feels great! Doesn’t seem to achieve very much but I’ll probably find out what it’s for later on. Now – have I built up any coherent picture of things yet?
Never mind, hey, this is really exciting, so much to find out about, so much to look forward to, I’m quite dizzy with anticipation …
Or is it the wind?
There really is a lot of that now isn’t it?
And wow! Hey! What’s this thing suddenly coming towards me very fast? Very very fast. So big and flat and round, it needs a big wide sounding name like … ow … ound … round … ground! That’s it! That’s a good name – ground!
I wonder if it will be friends with me?
And the rest, after a sudden wet thud, was silence.
Curiously enough, the only thing that went through the mind of the bowl of petunias as it fell was Oh no, not again. Many people have speculated that if we knew exactly why the bowl of petunias had thought that we would know a lot more about the nature of the universe than we do now.”
― Douglas Adams,