My whole life I’ve been told to be less. Teased for being upset the boys wouldn’t pass me the ball in peewee basketball..told to be careful with my tone in highschool band leadership training because even though I was right, my tone of voice was judgemental…told to calm down, told it’s not a big deal, told to relax, told to follow, told that all I know how to do is fight and when there’s nothing left to fight I’ll just fall over.
Now I find I’m fighting myself.
All of these memories rush through me when I feel called to stand up for something, and it’s paralyzing. It mixes in with my critical understanding of the world, and I see myself shrinking, being confined, and I want to fight it so badly….but it seems I believe the messaging now. It’s inundating presence has finally seeped through, and I worry if I speak out I’m being aggressive…again.
All of these memories rush over me when I try to create, when I yearn for creative collaboration with peers. Have I been so unpleasant to be around that now no one wants to make music with me? If I were a better musician, more attractive, or just quiet, would they put up with me? Not even would they want me. I’m so desperate I just wanted to be tolerated!
I didn’t used to be this way.
Years of being told to be less, seem to have done a number.
I used to be brave. take chances. I used to take up space.
Why am I believing these memories? How are they serving me? Are they protecting me? Maybe it’s time to let them go, and find a medium between who I was and who I am…a person influenced by passion yet that can taking a moment to breathe and see a bigger picture.
Is this possible?
P.S. On the thought of collaborating, I recognize that in reality it’s likely not about me. Please don’t mistake my vulnerability and insecurity above for hubris that everything is about me. It’s quite possible the fact of the matter is I’m no longer in school and therefore no longer in forced situations with different people all with various musical endeavors to complete. I’m in my 30s, and everyone is busy. If I want to create with folks, I’m going to have to make that happen…and I’m trying, really. But every time something doesn’t pan out it takes me a minute to lick my wounds and get back out there asking folks who are just as busy as me to share their time and energy.
P.P.S. I’m participating in a local baking competition that is a fundraiser for a non-profit here in Pontiac. I’m hella scared. I love baking, and am in the process of turning it into a side hustle, but if you can think of my imposter feelings as a musician (something I have decades of training and experience in), imagine my feels going into this with like actual culinary folk…help!
It’s a Death by Chocolate event, and I’m making some pretty killer cupcakes. I hope they’re good enough to hang with the others’ bakes at the event!