“Who the Hell Do You Think You Are?”

by Carol Hess on August 3, 2011

“Who the hell do you think you are?”  

My mother’s voice rings as loudly in my head years after her death as it rang while she was alive.  Such a harsh question.  “Who the hell do you think you are?”  

Words meant to prevent me, an only child, from becoming spoiled, too big for my britches, too full of myself, too much me and not enough her.  Words that kept me so small that I ate and ate and ate until I became big.  And I was smaller than ever.  One of life’s paradoxes. 

Too full of myself?  How can anyone be too full of herself?  I think the problem is I’m too full of other people and not full enough of myself.  I’ve ingested, eaten, consumed, and had shoved down my throat other people’s ideas, adjectives, labels, and definitions of me instead of my own.  And they are choking me.  I want to vomit them up. 

I’m so full of other people that I feel empty inside.  Another paradox.  There’s a hole inside me that I try to fill with all sorts of things – possessions, food, work, play, busyness, noise, television, relationships.  The list is endless.  But nothing I’ve tried works.  Someone once told me that’s because I have a God-shaped hole that only God can fill. 

That makes sense to me. 

“Who the hell do you think you are?” 

I used to describe myself by my age, marital status, occupation, nationality – even hair color for heaven’s sake.  The usual parameters by which society can instantly categorize and judge me.  I don’t identify myself in any of those ways any more.  Not that they don’t fit.  They do.  They just aren’t who I am

And I really want people to know who I am.  

Now there’s a change.  I’ve spent most of my life trying to hide who I am so you wouldn’t judge me and find me lacking.  I didn’t want to be seen.  But these days I want to stop hiding.  (I think that’s the real reason I want to lose weight.  I don’t want to hide anymore.)  I want to be seen.  I want you to know who I am.  

Why the big change?  I hope it means a couple of things.  I hope it means I love myself more than I used to.  And I hope it means I care more about my own opinion of me than someone else’s. 

Who the hell do I think I am? 

A really persistent seeker of answers.

Who do you think you are?  I would really like to know.


by Carol Hess


Categories Personal Empowerment, The Art of Star Polishing

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Brooke Farmer August 4, 2011 at 1:16 pm

I am a collector of life experiences.


avatar Carol Hess August 4, 2011 at 2:24 pm

Love it, Brooke!


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