There’s a country song called “Who I Am” by Jessica Andrews that has always made me smile. I love how she lists all the attributes that make up all the different parts of her. No matter my love-hate relationship with country music, this song is always one I will sing at the top of my lungs.
Recently my friend Megan shared a post she’d written some time ago. While the words were her own, it held all that I love about that song. It told of where she’s from and who she is, all the parts that make her unique. I got goosebumps as I read along and was inspired to write my own. So here, with Megan’s blessing, is who I am…
I am military dress blues and loving my country. I am air shows and gazing in awe at the powerful jets. I am the daughter of a military spouse, fighting the good fight on the home front. I am D.o.D. school in a strange country and learning to speak German so I can order from the local deli for my mother.
I am Mary’s granddaughter, twice over. I am quiet Saturday afternoons in the little rock house on the hill spent with jigsaw puzzles and Merle Haggard on the ancient stereo. I am strawberry cake with cream cheese frosting, blueberry muffins, REAL vanilla cokes, and hot turkey hoagies from Yummies shop. I am nights spent rooting for the Portland Trailblazers and watching In The Heat Of The Night.
I am afternoons spent watching Fraggle Rock with Nancy, my Cabbage Patch doll- named after Mrs. Reagan. I am Rubik’s cubes and classic rock. I am the favorite niece, though we don’t tell anyone.
I am from split homes and blended families. I am without a constant home to say “I grew up here.” I am turmoil and rebellious teen years. I am conflict and tension.
I am red hair, black hair, and every shade in between. I am tall and skinny, awkward and unsure. I am desperate for someone to notice me and terrified they will see too much of me. I am young love with all the wrong boys.
I am the teen mother scared to death of doing something wrong. I am late night rockings and early morning snuggles. I am baby’s first steps at his first birthday party. I am Bob the Builder, Dora the Explorer, Finding Nemo, and Spongebob Squarepants.
I am from “we don’t talk about that” and “suck it up.” I am part of a long line of mental illness. I am anxiety, OCD, and depression.
I am from a line of women who “run to fat after they have babies.” I am a 14 year battle with my body. I am hips that are a little too full for my taste, I am a tummy I wish would just shrink away. I am diets tried and failed.
I am the path to the future.
I am chronic illness and living life despite it. I am advocate, fighter, friend. I am spouse, lover, partner. I am sister, adopted family. I am finding where I belong and carving out my place in the world. I am leaving my mark and finding my passions. I am songs sung behind closed doors and secrets spilled onto a computer screen.
I am love, compassion, understanding. I am change. I am hope.