Saturday, March 23, 2013

Who Am I Anyway?

My junior year of high school, my character in the school musical sang a song with this title. I've blocked out much of that show -- it was bad theater as well as a forgettable production -- but I still catch myself humming this melody from time to time. This week, I've had some time to reflect on the answer to that question as it applies to my life.
Who am I? The answer depends upon who you ask. Some know me as family, while others know me as "brother" in a different sort of way. Am I a pianist, teacher, accompanist, or church musician? Am I sullen and selfish or introverted and reflective? In each of these cases, I am identified by my role rather than by who I really am. Sadly, I've recently fallen into the trap of allowing other people's opinions to become my own definition of who I am. That's one of the reasons that it is so important for me to get away from everyone and get my head back in order. It's time for the real Kennith to return.
There really are very few people who truly know me. Some who think they know "me" would be shocked to discover that they only know a fragment of the person that I really am. For various reasons, I have learned to wear appropriate masks that change depending on the situation. (Before you get too high and mighty, dear reader, let's just be honest and admit that we all do this to some degree.) The reason is not based in manipulation or deception; it's a survival technique. The masks keep me from being hurt too deeply in stressful situations and allow me to appear more confident than I really am when the circumstances demand leadership. Other masks portray an image of disinterest about situations that actually matter deeply to me.
Where is all of this leading? Your guess is as good as mine! My intention at this moment is to devote some time on this blog to exploring some of the answers to this question. Some posts will provide insight into aspects of my character that can easily be misunderstood. Others may come across harsh (a danger of being truthful, at times). It is never my intention to upset or offend anyone (although I have had a great proclivity for that recently.....ugh!) -- so if you know that you easily fall into either of these categories, it might be best to avoid reading these posts for a while. After all, this blog is place for me to share my ideas and feelings.......and those aren't always pretty. Consider yourself warned -- I won't self-edit everything I say here for the sake of those intentionally looking to find fault. That's gone on for far too long already.
What do I hope to accomplish? I hope to address some lies that I have accepted about myself and by shining the light of truth on them, call them out and explain once and for all why they are not acceptable. Will it change me? I don't know. Will it empower me to be more comfortable with myself? I think so.