Saturday, October 1, 2011

Timorous audacity

"Be yourself.  Everyone else is taken." - - Oscar Wilde  

Everyone I know extols the merits of being oneself.  Everyone.  Yet for some strange reason, perhaps because I've put on so many masks in my life myself, or because I never even knew who I was until recently (so how could I have been myself?) I am not sure - with rare exceptions - whether what people show me of themselves is the real them.  

Sometimes I'm not even sure that the person I am showing others is the real me either.  I think that it more closely resembles the real me than it ever did, but I'm not sure that I'm brave enough to be who I really am with no pretense at all.  Part of that is because there's still a part of me that is scared that if people got to know the real me, they wouldn't like me.  Or they'd judge me.  

I base it on past experience where I voiced my opinion and got judged and/or attacked verbally. Immediately. By people I mistakenly thought I could trust because we shared the same beliefs.  But that's another question for another time.   

So these days, what I'm aiming for is a state of audacity - a bold disregard for convention (otherwise known as 'what others think') when convention - or conventional thinking - smacks of hypocrisy and superficiality.  Putting on that plastic smile and pretending everything is okay.  Some days, everything IS okay.  And some days, it isn't.  I'm getting so I refuse to say I'm "great" when I am just "okay" - and believe me - "okay" is a whole lot better than I was when I was pretending and saying "great."

Yet I'm being audacious in fear and trembling, knowing that the most dangerous person to a system that is built on appearances is someone who is real.  Therefore, that person becomes a target for even more judgment and attack.  Hence, the title of this post : timorous audacity.  Timorous meaning timid, hesitant, shaking-in-my-boots.  Especially for someone who has built her whole life on doing whatever it takes to keep on "being liked." 

God has brought me so far; I've grown so much in the last two and a half years.  And I'm coming to realize that less and less am I concerned with what people will think, and more and more with whether I'm being true to myself.  

The audacity.

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