DAY 16 // OUTSIDE THE BOX
Write about something you’ve been wanting to do that people don’t expect from you. Perhaps a repressed dream or goal that you haven’t shared with anyone. Something that will take you out of your comfort zone and expose a different side of you to others. Write about the thoughts and feelings that are holding you back.
For as long as I could remember, I have been a Creative.
I taught myself to draw with my sisters textbooks and was making my own comics before grade school. I sketched in every notebook and on every piece of paper I could find. By fifth grade I began to gravitate towards designing clothing.
But we already had a creative in the house, and art school was not an option. These days, I don’t really draw anymore.
Before I could talk I could sing. Like most, my talent was recognized in the church. I had an ear for harmonies and could memorize add-libs and runs from songs I heard in minutes. Eager to share, I tried out for the soloist part in my class recital. On line for my turn, the kids pushed me out. “Oh no,” they said. “You don’t think you can sing, too?”
I never went through with the audition. To this day, projecting my voice is my biggest challenge.
I could go on, but you get the point. There has been no point in my life where someone didn’t object to me having the audacity to add an “and”. “You’re smart, why would you have your cleavage in your avi?” “Why don’t you just stick to being pretty?” “You don’t REALLY think you can do that, do you?” “Oh, that’s cute.” The stares. The back handed compliments. The fair-weather friends. The insecure paramours. My fear that graciously accepting a compliment would come off as arrogant. My inability to share accomplishments or goals. Strategically sharing setbacks to show people how humble I was. Allowing people to laugh at my pain.
Often people ask how I ended up in pageants (the success at which, I also rarely share). Well, as a coach, I say what appealed to me was the interview (as an aside, it should be noted that regardless of the competition, 40-70%t of a pageant score is not looks-based, and is not conducted onstage). Because in preparation for competition, where you have mere seconds to make an impression, you have no choice but to brag. You need an at-hand laundry list of things that make you awesome, ready to be used on the right question. It was the only place where an “and” was a necessity.
These days, I try to apply it to normal life, though I’d admit it is challenging. It is not something I always do. I do hesitate when I see the “side eye” coming. But bit by bit, I’m letting my “and’s” shine. Shoot, this blog is one of them. And you know what? I am damn talented.
Well-behaved women rarely make history.
Conceived by GG Rene of AllTheManyLayers.com, the #30Layers30Days Challenge dares writers to dig deep with thoughtful daily inspirations meant to promote introspective thought and mindful journal practice. I will be posting my more inspired entries from the daily challenges. You can follow the #30Layers30Days hashtag on Twitter and Instagram, or follow GG Rene at @ggrenewrites.