I've been thinking a lot lately about my voice - you know, the impact I make on people and the impressions I leave. I don't feel I have much of a voice. Maybe even literally. In most situations I am pretty used to being in the background and not speaking much. I think in the circumstances I am more quiet, it's because I'm used to being that way, or the people I'm interacting with are used to me being that way; they just assume that Brie will not talk or contribute much, or that I don't have anything important to say.
I think that's partly why I had so much fun at Bear Lake this last weekend. When I am with those friends, I have a voice. I talk and I joke and I do silly I'm the Champion of the Rook Tournament dances that involve pelvic thrusts and the running man. I contribute to the conversation. People ask my opinion, because my opinion matters to them. It's really a great feeling.
I want that more.
I was talking a bit about this with my T this morning, and she remarked that I have quite a voice on my blog, and that a lot of people follow me. I kind of made a derisive snort, and she asked why I was dismissing what she had just said. And I told her that it's kind of pathetic to have a voice over the internet, but not in real life. And she remarked, quite simply, "Well, it's a place to start. And I know you make a difference to those who read."
And she's right. I'm glad that what I write matters to all of you. I'm glad that I've made an impact in some of your lives. I'm glad that I matter.
I guess, now, I just need to learn how to do that in my "real" life. I need to figure out how to have more confidence, and not conform to the identity that people think I should have, and just keep my mouth shut because it is expected of me, or because I expect it of myself. I want to have experiences like I had in Bear Lake all of the time. I want to feel silly and giddy and not be embarrassed to be that way in front of other people. I mean, theoretically, I want to figure out a way I can pelvic thrust my way through my whole life. ;) Know what I mean?
Well, it's a journey, that's for sure. Finding my voice after 10 years of starving it away isn't going to be easy. Back then, when I was dying, I could use my body to let everyone know how I was. People could look at me and read "I'm dying because I hurt so much," but I never could say it out loud. It's scary and tricky and just plain...odd...to actually open my mouth and form words to how I'm feeling. Even now, I mostly just do it with Brandon, but he's incredibly patient and great at helping me find the words I need to describe the hurt, just so that I don't need to hurt my body anymore to do the talking for me. Sometimes simply telling him, "Hey honey, I'm not okay," is all I need. And he envelops me in his arms and I sit with the hurt until it goes away, rather than letting it nearly kill me like it has in the past.
So, just to get a little bit of practice, I'm going to use my voice in this post today and tell you how I'm feeling. I want to say that today, I'm okay. I'm not particularly happy, but I'm not too sad, either. Just feeling really reflective. Just wanting things to change, and feeling motivated to change them. Feeling grateful I have all of you, because my T is right. Using my blog to help me find my voice is a great place to start. And you all have been so fantastic at getting me to speak up. At getting me to open up.
And I seriously love you for it.
So, thanks. :)
May we all use our voices today, instead of hurting our bodies to speak for us. Because we all have something really, really important to say.