The question of ‘Who am I?’ Some might say that it is a simple question, yet the answer to it has been haunting me for a wee while now. In an ever-changing world, I am trying to understand who I am as a person, where I want to go in life, and what I stand for.
I suppose If we talk about who I am on the whole, I am the same person I was when I was 5 years old (albeit a lot taller and heavier). Here is a photo for your comparison.
I am still that ginger girl with porcelain skin, covered in freckles, sticky out ears and long gangly limbs. I am still the talkative one, cracking jokes that only I laugh at. I am still the one with the loud laugh and the awkward seal clap thing when I get excited (it is comforting that I must have learnt this at a very young age). I have always been passionate (although some might have called that bossy in my younger years), sensitive, and I have always loved people. I remember a time where I cried for a homeless man on the streets, and asked my Mum to give me my pocket money to give to him. My heart has, and probably always will, break for those in need.
I used to think that maybe certain circumstances and experiences have changed who I am, and while this is partly true, I have realised through extensive psychotherapy that I have had a lot of my issues for my whole life. I have felt like a burden to others for as long as I remember (yes, I am still trying to work on this.) For example, I wouldn’t dream of taking a day off school for being sick because I wouldn’t want to inconvenience my parents. Or this issue that I didn’t eat a lot of food because I didn’t want to be “fat” apparently started when I was about 4 years old. I don’t quite know how I had this deluded view of life, I came from a loving home, and I wasn’t bullied at school.
These factors have made me start to wonder – is this then a part of who I am? After a very long time I realised these issues have somehow become ingrained into my mind, and I have to re-train my mind to not let this control me. They certainly add to who I am, but they do not make up the majority. And I am getting better – but as I’ve mentioned before it’s a long journey.
On top of this I have struggled with the fact that through different stages of my life, “who i am” as such, has been completely different. And yes, whilst the paragraph about my exterior remains true through my life span (apart from the time I dyed my hair blonde and black and tanned my skin making me look like an oompa-loompa), my priorities, values and beliefs have changed so much, that I am often left confused with who I have become, and who I want to be.
If you have been following my blog from day one, I’m fairly sure you will have a bit of insight to who I am. I think when I started writing this blog, I didn’t realise how much of my heart I would be sharing – and whilst putting all my messy musings down has helped me to process things, it is often a very vulnerable position to be in for the world to see the “true me.”
The “true me” part is the pinnacle to why I am so confused though. Just because I am sharing parts of my heart that I didn’t even know were hurting, I am still “me.” It is important to constantly remember that the not so good qualities turn into good, and help make me who I am.
I think that I have almost managed to devalue myself, thinking that I am only my sickness, or I am only my bad days. But luckily for me, I am blessed with the best soon-to be husband, family and church community, to remind me I am more than that. That I am loved beyond all measure, and to constantly remind me my value does not decrease based on someone else’s opinions.
I haven’t written in a wee while (due to a dislocated thumb and bright purple cast making it difficult to type), and I have received a few messages from close friends and family to say that my most recent blogs have made me seem very down, and that I have “lost my sparkle” (so-to-speak). I am definitely not offended by these comments, and I agree – recent blog posts have mainly been centered around my struggles.
These comments have also made me realise that I have come a long way in my recovery. I remember the first time a doctor told me I’d lost my ‘sparkle’ – I cried and wanted to punch him (I think I told him to leave in a not so nice way and then refused to partake in rehab for two days). At that point in my life I couldn’t recognise I had been through a rough time, and I was still pretending (both to myself and the world) that I was perfectly fine. Looking back this seems rather cringey, and I am glad I am now in a position to acknowledge that yes, I am in a rather dark place sometimes. My hope is though that I never lose my sparkle completely, that even in that darkness and brokenness, that part of me will still sparkle.
This blog has got trickier for me to write as time has gone on, as I have found it increasingly hard to articulate why I struggle from time to time. But please know, I am not “more down” than normal – I am actually a lot better than I have been in previous years, and I have all the necessary support in place. I also have a lot of things to look forward to, so keep a look out on the blog for travel adventures soon.
Looking back to my first ever blog, Who I am is much the same. I’d still introduce myself as Keira Radice, now 23. I was born and bred in the UK, but spent my formative years in New Zealand, making me a cross pom-kiwi-pom. I now live back in the UK, rebuilding my life with my amazing fiance, who is very much a part of me too. I have a degree, which I do intend to use when I’m better. I have a connective tissue disorder and an array of other medical issues, which have given me insight and empathy. I am still a firm believer in Jesus Christ- and I hope that my faith, and love are the center of my personality. And I still love to travel, with each new country and culture adding to my love for people and love for life.
I know that in a year or two’s time, the person I am may be different, but the core of me will remain the same. I really hope I never lose sight of the person I am created to be, and that I can continue to live my life out of love, even when everything else is changing around me. I will figure the rest out along the way.
Thanks for bearing with me team, I know that each and every person in my life contributes to who I am as well, and I love and appreciate you all!! Keep reading for some exciting August adventures coming up!
Until next time,