Thursday, May 26, 2011

p-p-perception

I had a bad attack of dysmorphic perception last night. It was epic. It usually is.

Back in the days before internet, we (well, I) culled and pulled our self-ideals from the small world around us. In school it was our friends and peers. What they had that you didn't. How they looked and how you didn't. Whether or not you were one of the popular elite, I am certain you wished for different or perceived betterness based on those who passed you by in their up-to-date fashions and convertible Rabbits. Or in my case, those few who could really knock an individual style clear out of the ballpark AND simply oozed creativity.

If you went to college, your perception(s) opened a smidge. Your bubble expanded and you were exposed to new ideas and persons of interest. If you did not go to college and immediately jumped into a work-place your bubble expanded even more due to the collected exposure of people outside your immediate social circle. People of different social-economic backgrounds, education, cultures, ages...the bigger your bubble got the more you (or at least I) compared yourself to others.

I don't know about you but as I aged and ahem...matured I grew more concerned with status of a sorts. I wanted a nice place to live in and call my own, a car that didn't break down ALL THE TIME, money to pay my bills and hopefully have some left over for fun stuff. For the most part, I was content. But...

Change happened. As it happened, the feeling of being content would shift and change. Thank goodness for BUST magazine. In my late 20s and early 30s I would swear there was something wrong with me as I didn't find the ideals of those around me appealing. I had never been a follower of the mainstream and felt more and more an outcast as Cosmo and the like were so ready to inform me. BUST saved me from myself and reassured me that I wasn't alone that there were other women like me out there. Once the internet began clicking around I immediately found a core group of fantastic women on the BUST boards. I have lost touch with most of them but that community and sense of belonging still sings in my heart. They were smart, witty and funny as hell and gosh I adored them all.

Now that the internet is what it is and our bubbles are virtually, universally ENORMOUS, I find that my small world of non-mainstreamers has become mainstream in a sense. I no longer feel alone in my wonky-dorkiness but now I feel lacking even in my comfort zone. Not anyone else's fault but my own. My perceptions of who I thought I would be by now just have not become concrete and with so many talented, creative folk out there taking the blogging/crafting world by storm, the once small fishbowl I felt kinda big in has become a full blown aquarium with tunnels and rooms and I feel lost and unnoticeable. So now not only am I dancing with a dysmorphic dance partner of perception, my wallflower ego is clinging to the sidelines toes-tapping to the rhythm hope, hope, hoping someone asks me dance.

I don't really know where I am going with this but the developmental side of me, the part that thoroughly enjoys studying human nature cannot help wonder how we all fit in. I've been blogging since 2003 and I think so much has changed since I began. The tools out there, the platforms, the business side of it all. It is amazing what one can do and I still feel that it is out of my grasp. Not in a woe-is-me sense more like a huh? I'm baffled by how it works and feel like my brain is too old or I'm too old fashioned or who knows what but how do you do it? And do I want to do it? Should I do it and if not, what then?

This may seem all over the place but I think I just want to say that I think even the most productive or accomplished of us slips and plays the comparison game and wonders where they failed or what they NEED to be valid. Validity, yes, that's it. I need a bit of validation that I AM someone. That I matter. That I am a part of something wonderful. My reality knows this but my perception is so skewed I'm feeling anything but. I know what it is (the reason), but that's a book I'm not ready to open just yet or at least read in public. So I hope that you know that YOU are valid and important and that you do indeed matter, more than you know and if we all took the time to let someone know they inspired us (not via a blogging award or huge public announcement, not that those are bad but make it more personal) I think that our hearts could sing a little louder.

So...wanna dance?

12 comments:

  1. Dearie,

    You and your post make my heart happy today. When I was in my late 20's (a while back) my two favorite words were validation and reciprocity. They are such good words! I adore you. I think you are so inspirational and I love peeking in on you and seeing what new things you are up to. I'm sorry I haven't been a better "blogger" friend but I feel lucky to have your "little space on the internet" to visit. Here's to being ourselves and getting on the dance floor.

    hugs,
    Fritzi Marie

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  2. i completely relate to all this, jek. completely. your brain isn't old or old fashioned...i just had to find out how good it was to be someone outside of the norm! how fun it was. it's horrible here in alabama and i go through what you're going thru all the time. i am fine back home in portland, or at least much better. i think you're awesome, in every way! you are such neat person=) the struggle is hard, but that's why i'm in therapy(ha). it's just good for us to tell each other we are okay! and it's okay. we need that. xoxoxo

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  3. Foxtrot? The Hustle? Let's boogie!

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  4. You know, i´m always out of words... Just this: may God bless you.. and YES, i wanna dance...

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  5. Dancey-dance!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d5pgUbxMsHQ
    (LOVE & HUGS & MORE LOVE & DAMN THAT'S A LOVELY PHOTO)
    XOXOXOXOXOX,
    stacey

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  6. i can totally relate... you are just amazing at putting your feelings down on paper, something i cannot do but wish i could! fast forward twenty years from your place and you have me....how sad eh? i feel so out of the loop with all of the bloggers, net workers, and what seems like a very closed circle of my peers. every one knows each other out there, and has something to offer that is interesting and current. everyone is twenty plus years younger or my age with tons of money allowing them the freedom to travel and live the life of luxury. these feelings of not fitting in and not having anything to offer haunts me daily. you are young and so bright. you are clever and entertaining. you are relateable(is that a word?), like the girl next door. you are curious and adventurous. best of all you take all of these qualities and you share it with us ( your readers) through your incredible ability to write so well and so much fun to read. you put into words how i feel, and that is what i love. i know everyone tells you to write a book, but i really wish you would!xxxx

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  7. jek - i've been reading this over and over since you posted this yesterday. you way with words often leaves me speechless. beautifully speechelss.

    first, if there is a way (me being on the opposite coast) to dance, i would dance with you any day. any. day.

    second, you do matter. you matter so much. more than you know.

    i'd offer advice but since i often feel exactly the same way, i really don't know what to say ... except i understand. i really do.

    there are days when we give so much of ourselves ... or all of ourselves, but it's somehow still not enough because out of nowhere someone has done 'it' just a little bit better, or quicker, or easier.

    if you somehow figure all of this out, will you please let us know?

    my only suggestion is to keep reminding yourself that 'you are enough.' because my dear jek, you are.

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  8. You know, I think there's something in the air...

    I don't know if you remember my previous incarnation, lavanotes, but I too have been blogging one way or another since 2003. I used to do your Coloriffic swaps, remember? I took a long break and restarted a year and a half ago and I have found things are so very different now. Blogging has become so insanely mainstream, it's of course caught the attention of money-makers. It's good and it's bad but it is what it is. We can fall into it or we can ignore it. I think what matters is that you enjoy it and benefit in some way. If it's just having a tight little community, then so be it Jek. If it's just to have a place to brain dump, so be it. I'm not really sure what exactly you're looking for your blog to do for you. I can help in some ways. There are some blogs even dedicated to blogging (seriously that did NOT exist in '06). Good luck lovely.

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  9. It is easy to feel adrift these days. information overload, lost in a sea of inspiration, left feeling unproductive in comparison to so many.
    Your post and angry chicken's post today have both made me think.

    Let's dance to our own drum.

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  10. hi :)
    I don't often comment on your blog, but love reading it and have it saved to my google reader. I just wanted to thank you for posting inspirational posts and the bad with the good. I love your enthusiasm and greatly admire it, suffering from the lurgy today, I can't even think about virtual dancing but I know you have many partners scattered across the globe. :)

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  11. I'll dance with you as long as you lead. You madam, are indeed a big fish in the crafty aquarium of my heart. While self-doubt seems to be the common thread many of us crafters share- I want YOU to know, that I adore you and have loved your work, your style, and your honesty since the moment I met you. And PS. PITCH TO BUST. They would love you too!!


    Big big big squeezy hug. xoxox

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  12. I have been blogging since 2000 and I too have seen the blogosphere completely change and explode. A part of me cheers for it and the other part wishes to be the big fish in the little bowl again. Now that I'm working (almost) all hours of the day, I don't dedicate myself to it the way I once did but I dearly miss the companions I made through it.

    I've been reading your blog for many many years but I seldom comment mostly because I feel like saying "cool" or "purrrrdy" and that's about it. However, I find you to be a unique and interesting person even among the big wide web of unique and interesting people. Keep on keeping on.

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