Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Who Are You?

I love to read. I read all sorts of things. I have read many of the classics, adventures, romance, biographies, fiction and a whole host of other things. Right now I am reading a book that I am almost embarrassed to admit called "Bunny Tales."'s not a cute childlike book filled with stories about fluffy little animals, it's an autobiography about a woman who was one of the girlfriends of Hugh Hefner.

When I was much younger I worked with a group of guys who told me I should send them some of my pics. I thought they were just teasing me, but they sent in some pics of me they took at a picnic and I was asked to come and audition/have pics taken. I have always had a bad girl side, but never that bad. Even if I had thought I was attractive enough, (which I didn't) I could not have ever posed nude. It's just not who I am. I didn't respond and I never gave it much more thought. Reading this book hasn't made me regret that choice either to be quite honest.

It's funny though, when I look back at pictures of myself from those days I was surprisingly pretty, but I had no idea. I dated a lot of attractive men, including a male model, a race car driver and a few musicians. Most of them weren't that interesting or that interested in my brain or me as a person. I wasn't sure why they dated me, but I think in retrospect I know why. I was just arm candy. None of those relationships lasted very long.

About 6 years ago I met a man in passing who I was being cordial to, that told me I should just "move along." I guess he thought I was flirting with him or something and he didn't realize at the time I was married and wouldn't have been interested in him anyway. I thought that was a really strange response to someone who was simply being nice and asked him why he said that. His reply was really surprising, he coldly told me I was the type of woman he always avoided because we are too pretty. I was still confused and asked for more of an explanation. He said on the off chance I would actually go out with him, that women like me are never intelligent, too high maintenance, rely on our looks all our lives and always leave men after having used and abused them in the end. I was speechless for so many reasons I can't even process them all even now. I also felt really bad for him, he was so judgemental.

Even though I find him very attractive and so do lots of other women, R is probably the least attractive guy I ever dated. He also has the biggest heart, best sense of humor and most kind, loving and generous spirit I have ever met. He shares my love of animals and I have found that someone who loves animals is nearly always a good person. I love him beyond measure and I think he is truly beautiful inside and out.

It's kind of interesting what we think of ourselves when we look in the mirror. Do we ever see ourselves as what we are? Not just superficially, but also who we are? When I look in the mirror now, I see an aging, overweight woman who is tired a lot from lack of proper sleep and has nothing to offer the world. Sometimes I wonder why anyone would find me attractive. Ultimately, I don't really care if they do or not because I am not only what I look like. But every once in a while everyone wants to feel attractive I think. Oddly enough despite all that I still get flirtations from men. One guy had the nerve to ask me out while R and I were waiting in line for a movie and he was holding my hand! I have no idea what the guy thought when he did that. Obviously I didn't say yes!

If I ever wrote an autobiography like the girl mentioned above, what would I write? How would I tell the world who I am? Could you do it? I know what the title would be though..."Close Encounters And Lost Causes." (I am joking...sorta.)

How do we know who we are? We can be self aware in our good and bad points, but does that tell us who we are and how the world sees us? Are we who we think we are, or are we a summation of the way people view us? I guess I am waxing philosophic this morning because I have been trying to figure out lately who I am. I think I am going through a sort of metamorphosis. Perhaps that is something everyone goes through when they reach a certain stage in their lives. I also think it's why I have been adding little tidbits about things that happened when I was a child. A friend who reads my blog pointed out yesterday on the phone how surprised she was that I was adding those to my posts lately, since I have rarely talked about my childhood. Maybe I am trying to figure out who I am by thinking about where I came from and the events that shaped my life.

I made a post on my other blog with a picture that I overlaid onto a background and then I put words on it. The words represent what I see at any given time. I could have added a thousand more words but there wasn't room. If you're interested in seeing it, you can do that here:

Cirque de Lune

Maybe I am being vain, or insecure and afraid of getting older. Or maybe...I am finally just growing into myself and I want to find out who that person really is! For some reason it seems important to me right now to figure that out. I am not sure why but I am equally sure that the answer to that question will present itself in due time. It usually does.

So I am curious, do you know who you are? What do you see when you look in the mirror? Are you attractive? Do you know it? Do you know who you are and what you're all about? Do you think that others see you the same way you see yourself? I think whether it's physical or something deeper, that most people are attractive in one way or another to be honest. I also think that the most important thing is that we are attractive in some way to the people who love us the same way they are attractive to us. But I still you see what other people see? Chances are you don't. Maybe we never can, but I still want to try to find out.


Amanda said...

I have had issues with how I look, getting called ugly by strangers when young never helps. Ginger, speccy foureyes, fatty, I had it all. Of course now 40, time and myself have moved on. I've had long conversations with friends as I run a slimming club and how we feel and look are always closely connected. They don't care if they should or should'nt be like that, thats just how we can feel at times. Never judge a book by its cover, we're all guilty though, but I always hope someone takes the time to peak inside the book and find out for sure. Still feel speccy four eyes, ginger kid sometimes, but in a kind of nostalgia, ahh poor kid kind of way. Almost as if it was someone else. Thank goodness for time, hair dyes, healthy eating and contact lenses, LOL

T.Allen said...

What an insightful, thought provoking post. I guess I'm of the rare types who has somehow almost intrinsically always known who I was/am. Perhaps, it is because I spent an inordinate amount of time alone as a child. Most of my friends were imaginary extensions of who I am. That time spent alone has been both a blessing and a curse. I know who I am and am not at all interested in the perception of others namely because it doesn't matter. Y'know? It's like truth-it just is, and while my truth may not be someone else's it doesn't make it any less true.

My husband doesn't even try to express who it is that I am or what it is about me that he's loved for twenty years, it just is. I'm often described as , "Tameka"-I guess that's the only way to put it.

Physically, I like the way I look, I wish I saw myself through the same set of eyes at twenty as I do at 35, perhaps I'd have been happier, but I'd still have been Tameka...or maybe not.

Kelly said...

Amanda, I think kids make fun of each other no matter what they look like. It's just because they are starting to develop social skills and don't know how to express their feelings so they feel afraid or insecure and tease each other. I am sure you were a very pretty girl, and I am sure you're a very pretty girl now!

Tameka, (what a lovely name) I have always been very much like you. I never really have cared what people think of me one way or another. I am an only child and I am very self aware in many ways, but in others I am discovering lately I am not as much as I thought I was. Who knows maybe in ten years when you hit 45 like I am you will go through a similar thing? Or you might never go through it. I am not sure what's prompting me to go through this now. Like I said though, I am sure there is a reason and it will present itself soon enough. It bothers me a little that I care about this all of a sudden. I suspect it really does have something to do with realizing my mortality. There comes a day when you realize you aren't going to live forever or be young forever or have your family all your life, and it's a harder pill to swallow than I ever thought it would be.

Southern Bears said...

At 35 and 45 I had absolutely no issues with who and what I was. At 54 I still know who I am and I'm comfortable with myself but I now want to know what my purpose is here on earth. My daughters are married and have emmigrated and I no longer function as a granny - so what is my purpose now? My husband has loved me for 32 years and I have friends who have loved me for 40! I was also an only child and well loved by my parents. But despite being well loved, I still must have a purpose


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