I have always thought that I was a poser. If you’re my friend, you’ve heard me say it. I often question myself as to whether I really like something or if I am just pretending to like it (I know, it sounds a little crazy). Take the avocado, for instance. I first starting eating it on sandwiches and salads. I thought that I liked it, but was wondering if maybe it was the “mystique” of the avocado that was drawing me in. Then, one day, I just scooped some out of the shell and ate it plain! I kept thinking, “Do I really like this?” as I ate it. I’m still not completely convinced that I’m not just drawn in by the coolness of it or if I really like the taste. You may think that this is some kind of crazy talk, but I am always questioning my motivations about everything. I don’t want to be a poser. I want to be authentic in everything that I do, create, and promote.
So, when I started calling myself a “writer” or an “artist”, it felt very poser-y. I forced myself to do it though. I knew that if I didn’t speak what I felt in my heart, then I would never actually become that very thing. Even though I felt it in my heart, I still had that little devil on my shoulder telling me that it was pretentious and that I didn’t have the right credentials for either title. Even as I am writing this, I am cringing at my audacity. How dare I think that I am a writer? What have I created that validates calling myself an artist? Then, I remember what inspires me and what drives me.
Tonight I was catching up on some reality shows that I hadn’t seen in awhile. I love anything where people compete in a creative way. Project Runway and Face Off are my two favorites. I was watching Face Off, and they had to design a character that showed a certain art movement like impressionism, surrealism etc. I was so inspired by this! I was excited about the paintings and how the creature makeup artists translated that into a character. The energy that I got from that inspiration made me want to go into my kitchen/work room and start making something. I started thinking about this awesome octopus eating a clock light fixture that I have 1/4 of the way done. It revved me up to make something. As for writing, when I read a poem or a novel that resonates with my soul, it fuels me to create perfectly crafted sentences that would do that for someone else. I’m drawn to emotions like sadness, joy, frustration, longing, and emptiness, and I want to translate them into some sort of art form.
Because these inspirations and drives have always been present in my life for as long as I can remember, I feel pretty confident when I say I’m a writer and artist, even though that little devil never completely disappears. I think I would be a poser if I didn’t acknowledge my authentic self. I’ve spent my life trying to be good and trying to do what was acceptable. It’s impossible for me. I was very strict with myself when it came to church and religion in my 20’s and 30’s because I thought that it would make me good. I’ve finally figured out that God wired me a certain way to be able to express all of the emotions that he gave us. Anything I could do to stifle those or lock them out was the true sin. I know some people wouldn’t agree with that, but I believe it with my whole heart.
So, what is your passion? What makes your soul sing? What have you denied about yourself? Have you ever felt like a poser? Because I have gone through this semi-transformation (I believe it isn’t over yet), I am so interested to know these things about everyone. Customers come in to the grocery store, and I often find myself pulling out of them what they always wished they had done. They tell me their dreams and desires while they are buying deodorant and tampons. I’ve always been a champion of other peoples’ dreams- I want so much for them to get what they want. So now, I must keep telling myself that my dreams are valid and I am not a poser. Repeat after me: I am not a poser! I am a (fill in the blank)! We are our own worst enemy, but we are also our biggest supporter. Support yourself and let’s see what great things will happen.