I’ve always been fascinated with perception. I love to get an insight on how other people view the world around them. The same world you and I live in, but view so differently.
What I really find interesting is how other people perceive me. Recently, I was blindsided by two of my coworkers when they shared their unsolicited view of who they think I am.
“Kristy, I don’t like this side of you. It’s not you. I just feel like you see yourself as way more ‘metal’ than you really are. There is literally nothing metal about you.” One of them said.
“I always laugh when I see her ‘metal’ posts on Facebook!” The other replied, both of them erupting with laughter.
To say I was taken aback would be an understatement. Does this mean I’m not who I thought I was? Should I shift my inner self to fit this new, outside viewpoint?
“You’re just too sweet. You’re too sweet to be metal.”
Too sweet to be metal? What? Just two nights before I was playing Cards Against Humanity with some close friends and I was dealt this card:
After reading it to the group, one of my best friends said, “Kristy, that card could not be more perfect for you.”
People are quick to tell you who you are and who you’re not. And although you should take into consideration how other people view you, their views and opinions should not dictate your life, actions, or perception of yourself.
My work friends, as much as I love them, only see one side of me. They see me at work, whereas my close friends have seen me during some of my darkest times. Close friends know my story. Due to my personal belief that we all struggle in life and pity is gross, my coworkers do not.
Living with depression and anxiety, battling your own mind everyday, is hardcore. Living in a hospital with your mother while she battles cancer is my definition of metal. Walking away from a relationship that you fought to the death for with your head held high, even after it slaughtered you? That’s metal, too. Holding the hand of someone you love as they take their last breath… well, that’s about as metal as it gets.
We, being the complex human beings God created us to be, are never just one thing. So yes, I can be very sweet. I call to check up on people when they’re sick. I cry when I hear a song with depth or watch a sad movie. While I do all of those things, I can also face some of life’s darkest moments with the fierceness of an army marching into battle.
Don’t limit yourself. Don’t feel like you always have to be nice and let people run over you. Don’t think you have to be in defense mode all the time and end up with a serious case of emotional walls. You are you no matter what. You are still the same you on days that you’re shy and the days that you’re outgoing. You’re just showing the world another side of you.
Don’t let other people define you and put you in a box. Don’t give them the power to make you second guess yourself. You know you better than anyone else on this planet. You know your whole story while others only know bits and pieces. You are the one who has to live with you and your decisions, your attitude, and your self-expression. Never let anyone steal that away from you.
And for the record, “That was so metal.” is going on my tombstone.