Is it safe to be real when you are in the public eye?

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:

Nikki Groom ‏@NikkiGroom "If what you're publishing doesn't make you slightly uncomfortable, it's probably not going to be that great." @blogcastfm #FINDYOURFBOMB 

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.