Who Are You?
By: Lori Walker
(4 min read)
Are you hearing the intro music for CSI right now? I certainly hope so! Haha! I wonder if Pete Townsend and Roger Daltrey ever imagined their song would become the theme of a wildly popular crime scene investigator tv show? (Gil Grissom was always my favorite character!)
“Who are you?… Who? Who?… Who? Who?”
The guitar riff at the beginning of this song is legendary. However, as I was watching the official video, when the cymbals kick in, it really catches my attention. Drummers don’t always get the glory, so I thought I’d give Keith Moon a shout-out!
I’ve been asking myself the Who Are You question a lot lately. Most people would answer with a list of labels, roles or things that we do. Wife, mother, sister, friend, child or even the duties of our occupation.
It goes deeper than that for me. Who am I as a person, how do I see myself, what motivates me, and what do I want to accomplish?
Is our identity something we are born with? Is it the product of nature vs. nurture? Are we told what to believe when we are young, not given the chance to voice our opinions along the way?
I recently had a conversation with my oldest sister. We were talking about how different two of our great nieces are. Don’t get me wrong, they are equally beautiful! But I tend to side with the younger one, because that was my experience while growing up.
I said, “Don’t think the baby of the family has it easy! From my perspective, I had six people bigger than me, all telling me what to do or how to feel! Most of the time, I had to figure out who scared me the most. That’s the person I ended up listening to!” To which she said, “Huh! I never saw it that way!”
For as long as I can remember, I’ve watched people. Their behavior, their mannerisms and their actions. I would filter it through my “what do I do with the information” lens, and try to predict the appropriate way to act. I learned to remain quiet. This response was the safest. It drew the least amount of attention.
When I did try and engage, I was either laughed at, or not taken seriously. Or, if I really tried to prove myself, I’d get the Who do you think you are? look thrown at me.
This has spilled into my adult life. I’ve found that I’m reluctant to participate in a group or a zoom meeting. Ten times out of ten, I would rather talk to one person individually. There is far less danger of being judged or rejected.
But that was yesterday’s version of me. Who am I today? How do I find the person I was meant to be?
Finding yourself may sound like an inherently self-centered goal, but it is actually an unselfish process that is at the root of everything we do in life… It’s a matter of recognizing our personal power, yet being open and vulnerable to our experiences. It isn’t something to fear or avoid, berating ourselves along the way, but rather something to seek out with the curiosity and compassion we would have toward a fascinating new friend.1
When I started blogging, I was filled with anxiety. Am I good enough? Interesting enough? Will I write anything that anyone cares about? How will people see me? Is this who I am? Am I even doing this right?
The truth is that the more vulnerable I am, the better the chance I have to connect with someone. My only goal with writing is for someone to say, “Yes, I’ve felt that way, too. I’m not alone.”
My blogs may sound like journal entries to you. And who knows, maybe they are a stepping stone into another opportunity that may come along later. All I know is that I would rather explore who I am than regret never attempting it. I hope I encourage someone else to do the same!
As you ponder life’s biggest question, remember to be patient with yourself. I’ve found the best way to find meaning is to ask others about their experiences. I love individual conversations. I will always be fascinated by someone else’s story. That’s where I learn the most.
If I were having a chat with Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey from The Who, I would say, “Hi, I’m Lori Walker, and I am working on my Who!” They might think I was crazy.
So tell me…who are you… because I really want to know…
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