|June 22, 2017||Posted by Nancy under Empowerment, Live Your MORE|
I was the third child born in my family, and played almost perfectly, the stereotypical, sometimes painful – role of the lost or invisible child. I often felt like the odd child out – like I didn’t fit in. I felt different.
I was maybe a typical introvert — sensitive, deep, intense, and focused on meaning — even as a child. I loved my creative pursuits, weaved amazing stories in my mind; sitting in our willow tree sketching, designing, and making up songs; sewing; and pretending to be an entrepreneur. (Although “entrepreneur” wasn’t a word that was thrown around much in the early 60s.) I was also easily distracted.
In solitary pursuits I wasn’t tempted to measure myself against others, where I was sure to come up short if I did. Instead, I just lived happily inside my book, journal, music, designs or whatever else I was buried in. Mine was a world delighting in creativity, ideas and stories. While I loved those pursuits, they did tend to keep me somewhat invisible.
In retrospect, being invisible probably felt much safer – – if others couldn’t see me, they couldn’t reject me. It was a pattern that seemed to serve me well as a child. I didn’t trust others to meet my needs, so I learned to meet them myself.
As I continue to move through adulthood, I’m still aware of this desire to be invisible. I’ve also realized that this desire for invisibility has become a habit; one that also keeps me small.
And what would I tell ANYONE else? “You weren’t created to be invisible and play small.”
“Your being here is meant to have an impact. Your life reaches out like ripples in a pond – in ways that you can’t begin to imagine.”
That’s what I would tell someone else, that’s what I would remind YOU. When it comes to me, myself, and I, the not-so-supportive voice of the ego screams – it’s not safe to be visible! You’ll be hurt! You’ll be trampled on! Or maybe even worse, find out that nobody cares!
Here’s what I’ve come to know: I’ve grown weary of playing small. I would say that it’s exhausting to keep one’s soul — my soul — contained. It’s exhausting to unconsciously be intent on hiding out… to not trust the magnificence of who we are.
So, I’m now beginning the journey of learning how to be visible. I still want enough of the solitary time my soul longs for and cherishes; which I now see as my way to recharge, not my way to hide.
As I age, I’ve also been thinking a lot about legacy. I’m still just as happy reading a book, being immersed in my creative pursuits, or being engrossed in deep 1-on-1 conversations with one (or a handful of close) friend(s). I’m also deliriously happy when I’m playing with ideas, either alone or with others. These things bring me great joy. And while up until now, most of my creative pursuits have been tightly protected inside the confines of my mind, or my living space, I will be bringing myself, my ideas, and my gifts out from hiding.
….beginning the journey to becoming visible.
And I’m choosing, that maybe most importantly, I care… I matter deeply, to me.
What about you? Have you kept yourself small and somewhat invisible, or are allowing yourself to be seen fully?
PS – About the image – I purchased that pin at an art fair many, many years ago, while visiting a friend in the northeast. Sadly, I don’t know who the artist is – as the pin itself is not signed. (A note to all artists!!!) But It touched something deep inside of me at the time, and still serves as a reminder that it’s up to me to create safety for myself as I become visible. <3