I am participating in the itty bitty adventure club and my adventure this week was to confront my twitter fears. Okay, I know that seems...a bit tame, but it is ITTY BITTY! Okay?!
I'm scared of twitter. It seems fast. And you have to be concise. And some people twitter A LOT. But I am not even at the actual tweet stage. My goal was to find a bunch of new people to follow, which was very easy. And then to simply retweet. Not even an original tweet! Just a retweet. This is what I retweeted:
I did it. Really not scary. But still kind of scary. Because! Because...I tried to come up with a list of potential topics for my blog and I went completely blank. Because yesterday when I tried to write a blog post, it was a stupid rambling boring one. I don't even know what I was talking about. Because as I try to put myself out there I suddenly feel like a bowl of oatmeal with no identity, because it is scary to explore my identity.
I know it is scary for everyone, but I am a public school teacher and we are supposed to talk in slight baby voices, be pillars of responsibility, floral-print-skirt-wearing, neutered, motivating, limit-setting, excellence-expecting, school spirit fist pumping educators. OH GOD! I am not that. Since I teach art, I get to wear jeans and teeshirts and get messy, and be...a little different. But I still have to pretend. What if they find out? What if one of my students, a middle schooler(!), finds this blog? What if they learn something about me they don't like, or their parents don't like? Teachers can be bullied too. I have been bullied by a student. How far can I go?
There is a picture of me, the old me, that I hold in my mind. It was taken at Christmas when my daughter was only a few months old. My hair is a frizzy wreck, I look bloated and matronly. My son standing next to me has a kool-aid mustache and a cowlick. I was pretty miserable. And completely safe and uncontroversial. Just another tired mom, getting through the day. A year after that picture was taken, I would be in my first teaching job, further dug into conformity, safety. That period in my life was fleeting, and remembering my kids then brings a quick flash of tears at the thought that those soft little beings, that are bigger now and so different, are gone forever. I needed to be that person then, but it felt like a jail. It was so inauthentic that I was jumpy all the time. Unfortunately I am not completely out of that role when I am at work. It comes with the job, it is what teaching is. The real me peeks through so that I am not a robot, but I am still putting on an act. There are other teachers who aren't. They fit into the public school teacher role so much more comfortably than I do. They are good people, but I feel a million miles away from them.
I have NO answers. How to be authentic and real when I have real fears about the real me being really seen byreally immature and impulsive young people. This is the issue of my life right now. It is what I am up against.
What about you, are you stuck in a role? Tell me about it.