Thursday, April 19, 2007

Faces of Me

The many faces of me...change with time.
Skinny, Little Blonde.


When I was a little girl, I had some adults tell me that I reminded them of a girl called 'Twiggy.'
I also, had a lot of kids that called me a Tom-Boy.
In sixth grade, I had a boy call me 'white trash' because I wore my brothers' clothes.
At another school, in another state, I had a group a girls call me a 'prep' because I was a cheer-leader for 4 mos.
In high school, I had a boy tell me I looked like a 'beach-bunny.'
Same year, another school in yet another state, I was called a 'freak.'
In college, I was told that I looked like a 'librarian'
I was also told that I danced like an 'old hippy.'

I have been told that I look like Goldie Hawn, Olive Oyl & Uma Thurman.
I have been told I look homely & sick.
And I have been told I look natural & happy.
I have been told that I come off as aloof, blunt and a 'do-it-yourselfer.'
First impressions & misconceptions...
One of my best friends initially thought I must be a slut because I hung out with a bunch of guys... plus I was skinny and a blonde.
I have had strangers try to turn me into a victim of their violence because they perceived me to be 'weak.'
I have had superiors try to hold me back because they saw me as 'flighty.'
I have had authority figures stalk me because they perceive me to be 'bad & up to no good.'
I have had mechanics & others try to rake me across the coals financially because they perceived me as 'dumb'
I have had people confide in me the darkest secrets of their souls upon meeting me because they perceived me to be 'open.'
I'm all of these, but in reality, not as they it.

I, like anyone reading this, have been labeled 1001 things.
perceptions, misconceptions & reflections.
We all get labeled.

Our labels change with time, circumstance, place & company. Some of these perceptions are misconceptions and some are reflections. Some are reflections of ourselves & some are reflections of those around us.

In sixth grade, when that boy called me 'white trash' I wanted to re-invent myself. I had been at the school for over a year, I was considered a Tom-Boy and I got into a lot of fights. I wasn't real happy.

When we moved to another state, I re-invented myself, kind of. I promised myself I would not fight and I would wear clothes that were more 'girly.' I promptly tried out for cheer-leading and although I didn't find my niche in life, I did discover that with a change and a choice... the perceptions of me from the world around me could change. Maybe not in entirety, but some.

I learned that how people perceive you, dictates how they treat you. I learned that how people treat you affects how you perceive the world. I learned that I am still me no matter where I go.

I have learned that when I feel sexy, I look sexy.
I have learned that when I feel determined, I seem empowered.
But I have also learned that people come into our worlds carrying their own personal stereotypes and that their first impressions of you can be dictated by that & not at all by you. only time, exposure & experience can whittle that away. And I know that it can be whittled down...I have done it.

I believe in the color-wheel theory.
I believe that I embody all colors of the rainbow and all the colors in betw
I believ
e you do, too.
I believe that time and circumstances, as well as personal choice or immediate need, may dictate what colors you may see in me & what colors I am allowing to shine through.
I believe some people are color-blind and for all the reds and yellows I emit, they can only see blacks and blues.
I believe that 99% of communication is interpretation and that communication begins before we even speak.
I believe that on some levels, I pick & choose what colors come flying out of me.
Sometimes I hold colors back, usually out of fear & insecurity, self-preservation and sometimes even, self-promotion.
Some colors, I hold close to my heart & share only with those closest to me.
Some colo
rs just fly.
I have learned that escapism, won't let me escape the fibers of color that form the blanket that cover personal & spiritual skin stay with me where-ever I go. Pills, alcohol, depressive sleep won't take that away. But I have learned that a choice & a change can change the vibrancy of these colors and how clearly I can see myself, as well, as how clearly others can perceive me.

This post was written for someone whose color-wheels are spinning....someone who's allowing the outside world to define their colors, as opposed to allowing their inner-colors shine out & bounce back in a prism effect...someone who feels like their inner-colors are bouncing so fast and hard within themselves that they might actually fear what will happen when these colors come out for the world to see... someone who see's life as being black & white when it's really full-color... someone who wants and needs to make a choice and a change.

I look at you and I see a color-wheel spinning...I see all kinds of colors in flits & flurries bouncing around in your black & white world. I hear you screaming that you want to make a change & a choice and I understand how it's sometimes difficult to pull fresh colors to the surface when all around you seems so the outside world is sucking up all of your colors, some of which are fresh & new for you, and just painting you black. I understand how sometimes the world defines who we are but I believe we can change those perceptions on some levels. I believe in you and all of your colors. I believe that when we deprive the world of all of our colors, we are depriving ourselves & in essence, living a lie. I believe those colors are busting to come loose.

I believe there is a lover out there waiting to see your shades of red and an employer just waiting to see your greens. There's a friend waiting to see your yellows and a family member waiting to see your rainbow. Likewise, I believe there are those waiting to see all your shades of black, knowing that black will consume all colors.

Through-out this entire post I have made statements, I have shared experiences and convictions of my own... But now, I'd like to ask a question and make a proposition... What's holding you back? Where's the fear?

Make a list, be honest& be true.
I propose that if you can define what is holding you back...
then you can work on resolution to them.
I believe that in those resolutions you will start to let your colors fly...


Hammer said...

Good post. Everything you said is true. when I feel confident, others seem to react better to me.

I guess we do have a lot of control after all.

I'm really self consious and shy and it has really put a damper on certain aspects of my life.

I've finally broken through some of it but I still feel the creeping self doubt once in a while.

Matt said...

I shudder to think what people assume of me from reading my blog. It's bad enough that people you see on a daily basis (like at work) have wildly divergent opinions of you....

Scott from Oregon said...

Holding me back? Hmmmm...

If I had goals I couldn't reach, then I'd have answers for you. I've reached that happy stage in life where I don't have anything left to prove. My main focus is to retain what skeletal health I still maintain and grow old with grace and lots and lots of humor.

As to perceptions, I like being the rumpled and dirty carpenter who knows what verisimilitude means and can recite T.S. Elliot by memory...

Being just a little out of the box at all times makes people rethink their thoughts when they have dealings with me...

Orhan Kahn said...

I hope this reaches the person it was meant for because it is beautiful :)

Tai said...

Very wise and beautiful. I love the metaphor of the color wheel.

singleton said...

So far, the biggest Tink ever!
These words send me, twirling , swirling, spinning.....

mindy said...

let's see.. holding me back is only one thing. fear.

Enemy of the Republic said...

I don't think this was intended for me, but I will take it as such. Great post!

mig bardsley said...

A wonderful, inspiring post.

skinnylittleblonde said...

I'm going to go backwards...because that's how I am today ;)

Mindy~ That's usually the case with me too! But, taking it one step further ... fear of exactly what?

Singleton ~ Keep on spinning, whirling, twirling! If Dr.No can let his colors shine through ... we'll have a disco-tech!

Tai~ TY...I think I learned or developed that theory when I was busy defining myself.

Orhan ~ I hope so too & more importantly, I hope it causes them to look inside. I see so much beauty in there, that I am afraid they cannot see at this time.

Scott ~ 'Being out of the box' is exactly what I am talking about. Boxes, like others' perceptions can be so limited & downright suffocating.

Matt~ Lol, well not that you asked, but it's always interesting to know... I think you are a sensitive fellow with a keen sense of humor that likes to party.

Hammer ~ I think we all get that creeping self-doubt. Sometimes its a reality check, but more than often it's our fears creeping up, IMHO. Regardless, I think it helps to keep us human, open & understanding of others. P&L

skinnylittleblonde said...

Lol, I left my comment window up & started flitting around the house and missed you two... (I'm really backwards today;)

Mig ~ TY, if not inspiring then maybe enlightening... with color ;)

Enemy~ Please take what you like and leave the rest's a serious rambling on.

BTW Scott from Oregon... I had to look up verisimilitude & I hope I have that too! :) Great word!

Angela Marie said...

Hmmm... was this post meant for me?
Have you read my whole blog from the beginning?

I did read your comment on my daughters post about the crayons...
apples do not fall very far from the tree.

It is interesting that I have a post in draft about this very subject on misconceptions, perceptions and stepping out of the box.

Okay, okay... I will make a list!

Scott from Oregon said...

Yes ma'am... My favorite word, that one. Try saying it drunk or with a french accent or with marbles in your mouth.

Beautiful, I say...

Ver i si mil i tude...

Goose bumps!

No said...

Perfect..I am guilty of stereotyping skinny little blonds, and every time I do, I'm wrong...every time.Thanks for the great post..right on target.

Reflections said...

Ahhh yes, I have been labeled from telly Savalas to an FBI agent to a killer, eh, eh. But like I said on Singleton's blog, no matter how hard I try, I can't stop being me!

Slick said...

I'm pretty much me...I've been called everything in the book but the term "goofy" has always been said.

It's not that I'm dumb, it's just that I'm not a very "serious" guy.

It's how I deal with all situations. Stressful or otherwise.

mindy said...

i knew you would ask that. fear of life. fear of death. fear of sadness. fear of the unknown.

skinnylittleblonde said...

Angela Marie~ LoL, I guess it was meant for everyone open & willing enough to read my ramblings... but I did have a certain young soul in mind. Your daughters blog is beautiful, like yours, and she too seems to be a beautiful person, inside & out. With reference to your draft, lol, I am not surprised at all... I think we're kindred spirits ;)

Scott ~ Lol... it really is a great word, one I could pronounce & spell as I have heard it many times from my own father. Defining it by context, I was unsure of myself so I had to whip out the dictionary and now I love it all that much more. Some words are like some people... the better defined they are, the more I like 'em.

No~ Lol, I love your honesty. We all have our personal stereotypes, perceptions & such.

Reflections~ Lol, You make me laugh. My DH used to shave his head & people thought he looked like a cop or a hitman & now his hair is long & folks think he looks like a hippie or a surfer. Lol, needless to say he is none of the above.

Slick ~ Ewww....I love your key to stress management. Going ballistic or getting emotional never helps... but laughter never hurts.

Mindy~ Lol, I even edited post to include the question of fear. I think the fear of the unknown is the greatest and most common fear. I have a girlfriend who wants to open her own shop & hasn't...she always says 'But what if it fails?' I say 'Well, you can ask that question until your dying day or you can go for it & see if the question is even relevant.'

Anne said...

Aw Skinny, another beautiful, inspiring post. You go ahead and be the rainbow you are, my dear - the more colorful the better! You can't please everyone, so you may as well please yourself. :)

singleton said...

And these are the things I call you....
Friend, Sweet soulful baby sib...
and I call your name when I need you and never make a sound, but your hear it...and answer back! ILYSVVM, Enjoy little Jose'...throwing my stick and bandana in the car now...on my way to runaway! Peace, love, and as Nadine always said, "Make it like a memory"....Happy week-end Sweetie!

wreckless said...

What an awesome post and how precisely written. I was just talking to my wife about this last night. Our daughter is having issues with a girl in her class and we got to talking about self esteem/image and how it can be determined from such a few episodes. Think of how powerfully the names/labels you were called affected your phyche and development and behavior!
Your post also has roiled some personal issues. In contemplating a carreer change, FEAR is the biggest obstacle. Fear of embarassment or failure.
Thanks for a great post! Stop by and visit me again, your comments are appreciated.

Vancouver mermaid/Montreal photographer said...

What a great post!

I can relate to some of these descriptions...I'm not a blonde, but I am only 105 lbs, soaking wet. People called me "toothpick" in highschool. I hated it.

Now, most people assume I am promiscous because 90% of my friends are male. I am the only co-worker that's female at my work.

But I'm neither a toothpick or promiscous...I am woman, Hear me roar! (

kj said...

your care and concern may be the easy wind that allows flight. i'd bet you are one loyal and trustworthy friend when the chips are down.

thanks for an inspirational post. you've said a mouthful, all of it true.


skinnylittleblonde said...

Anne~ I used myself as an example in this post to show how we all get labeled and we all either reap the benefits or pay the price,on some levels, for those labels and how we can have some influence over those labels even though we may feel like there is no way out.

Singleton ~ TY & ILYSVM...midnight now & just put him to bed. we've been out bat hunting & checking out the dark side of the moon...he's too young for martini moon ;)I hope you too saw the moon... it was smiling on us tonight.

Wreckless ~ gets the best of all of us. Ironically enough, we fear success & we fear failure... we fear being alone & we fear relationships ... we, humans are a true collusion of conflict. i'm glad you & your wife were discussing your daughters relationships & I hope that you have discussions with your daughter,as well. Even when my parents might have thought I wasn't listening,I was & I imagine the same is true for teens today.

Vancouver ~ I'm glad you liked it & I join you in a roar! LOL. Lightpost, stringbean, frenchfry, spaghetti legs, toothpicks & all are so silly.

Hi KJ ~ TY. I rambled on quite a bit, but it's all about living, loving & learning :)

Mel said...

Living, loving and learning...

Fear cheats us of having those every time.

Well said, SLB.
And thank you.

slaghammer said...

I’ve preached a similar mindset for most of my adult life. Black and white will get you nowhere but backed into a corner with too few options. The answer always lies in shades of grey. It’s not as colorful as your analogy, but the thought is the same. I also live by the maxim, “bring’er up to ramming speed.” It has served me fairly well all these years.

Anonymous said...

That first picture is hysterical

Kilroy_60 said...

Great stuff!

Self perception can be a mystery. Self assessment a whole 'noter animal...all too often beyond words.

Lots of good posts of late; wish I had more time for commenting.

singleton said...

I saw that Martini Moon smiling on us, baby! From hundreds of miles away, smiling on us both! peace~love~and the bluest skies!

SpongyBones said...

I friggen love the color wheel! Hell ya. Love this post! I don't care who you are. I bet you're fun to be around!

Nithya N said...

beautiful! something that everyone wants to think over but neer find time to do so.

skinnylittleblonde said...

Mel ~ Ty and I think you're right... fear robs us.

Slag ~ Yes, answers always seem to be hidden in the shadows

Anon~ Thanks for noticing! LOL. Things get crazy after midnight!

Kilroy ~ some self-perception is founded on others views. Btw, i know the feeling with reference to time

Singleton~ Always baby! Counting down now...

Spongy~ Lol...I'm glad you liked it! I don't care who you are either, I like your colors too!

nithya ~ Lol, one good rambling & I got it all out!

I, like the view said...

I have been held back by fear for so long, wish I could take a leaf out of mel's book

living, loving and learning

recently I'm trying feel the fear and do it anyway

so, what a brilliantly timed post

this is one of the things I love about blogging, and one of the reasons visiting you is always such a pleasure!

thank you once again