I am not pretending.

My mother and I had one of those top speed discussion yesterday. That's the kind of talks we tend to have because life is too busy to sit for hours and chat. Our conversations, which never last much more than an hour, will cover at least a half a dozen topics. It's a grocery list of mother daughter bonding.

Yesterdays talk was about, in no particular order, my first-time home buying troubles, her experience working in a mortgage loan office, relationships, OCD and other mental health issues, fitness, my baby sisters broken thumb, becoming a writer, and the fear and indecision about changing careers.

The one thing that has been nipping at my thoughts since the talk is a certain kind of fear that we've both experienced.

We realized we share a tendency to feel like impostors. We have both had times of thinking "I don't know what I am doing, I am just pretending to be..."
All through school and college I remember telling people that I was really good at "bullshitting" my way through writing assignments. I always made A's on essays, short stories, poems and really anything that required me to write. I never took that to mean I was a good writer, just that I was good at faking it.

I felt the same way about design school. I have a sneaking suspicion this is part of why I am 2 years out from graduation and I am not even looking for a job in my field. No matter if it's true or not, I know I am not a designer, I just pretend to be. I am realizing that this is something that has held me back from too much.

I decided today I am not going to dance around titles anymore. Why shouldn't I claim who I am and live it? I have gifts and skills that the average person does not have. I have understood design and art long before I knew what they even were.
Why shouldn't I say I am an artist, if I create art? Why shouldn't I identify as a designer, when I am constantly designing. Why shouldn't I be a writer, while I am at this moment writing?

I have never had trouble claiming all other aspects of who I am. I am a wife, a caregiver, I am a loving and giving person, I am intelligent, well read, witty, and stubborn. I claim my mental issues for what they are, my physical frailties and my failings. So why until now have I felt so false when I claim my gifts and skills?

I sew, paint, sculpt, draft, build, design, write, sing, and cook, so if I do these things, then I am a seamstress, a painter, a sculptor, a drafter, a builder, a designer, a writer, a singer, and a cook.


Anonymous said…
..and the crowd goes wild!!! Amen, sister. You are those things, and more!!! I think your mother must be a very special lady and it's always wonderful to hear that there is a good relationship between a mother and her daughter.

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