Monday, August 24, 2009

Journey to Confidence

George Pitts

What is Confidence?

It's something if sold in a box would be worth a very high price, we all find it attractive in others. we all see it as a path to success and happiness.

lately this word seems to be falling out of the mouths of people that describe a presence about me.
I'm hoping they don't really mean arrogance. It makes me ponder on where they get the notion to attach the word to me from. When I am on a shoot they either describe the mood they want out of me as displayed in other works they have seen of mine, or label me with it after the fact.
Is is real or is it just an expression that I am borrowing for a bit.
Self certainty seems to be a nice way to describe it. I think it comes with age and life experience, and the need to no longer impress others. Not losing sleep about another persons opinions or better yet not being afraid to fail, and knowing that if you do fail there will still be life after the fact.

I use to be the sort of child that didn't speak, instead clinging to my mothers pant leg and hiding half of my face behind it like at a scary movie, not until a few hours past, and I felt that you liked me enough or you were safe enough to merit my little voice.

When i was in grade school, I was dealing with my onset of OCD and I didn't much fit the model of girl with any self confidence, all I wanted to do was go unnoticed so that no one would ask me questions about my hair or lack of, or why i wore scarfs to cover my head. The kids would ask everything from "do you have cancer?" to "is it your religion?". I didn't quite understand it myself and all i knew is i felt ashamed and freakish. Choosing bad and unhealthy relationships became inevitable for me down the road. I guess I didn't feel like i deserved anything better. after all who wants a girlfriend that can't not pull her own hair out, and how do they explain it to their friends and family. It also made me paranoid. anytime i saw someone whispering, I assumed it was about me, or that it was obvious that I was hiding something, or if they could tell I was wearing a wig. the round about questioning went well into my adult years. The audacity of strangers questions sent me home in tears many of days. Telling my friends and lovers was like a coming out day each time. Hard and emotional, and a fear of abandonment to wash it down.

I think once i told myself that i was going to be happy no matter what, even if I had to brainwash myself, did I see a change in personality. a few years later I was able to gain some control and finding others like myself out there existed gave me hope. My hair started to grow back at 30, and i at least left it alone long enough to grow it back feverishly. delve into things that kept me busy, and passionate. slowly the self confidence i never had started to flourish.
no more tears at the questioning and whispers of others, no more hiding in plain sight.
Quite the opposite actually, I started to become an exhibitionist and combined with my love of creativity it turned into a nice source of self confidence, I no longer felt the need of approval from outside sources. I think i have proven everything to myself, and failing no longer seemed to be something to fear, but more something to learn from. Fear is nothing more than the lack of knowledge. not knowing what to expect is what fear is made of.
I won't die if people don't like me, or don't approve of me. the world will still turn... So what you see in pictures or walking past your desk is nothing more than a girl who feels like she paid her dues, and like it or not, I like myself now, even if you don't.


Chip Willis said...

I have to read the whole of what you wrote, but I wanted to say this first as it was the very first reaction.


You are beautiful. I am biased of course, because you have graced my lens a couple times.

But you are stunning, and the beauty of it all is You are You. No pretense to be anything but Tanya.

I appreciate that much about you.

Chip Willis said...

I had to post inspired by you, over at my place.

Chris said...

I second the wow. I love your honesty.

I think there is a lot of you in everyone, but you show the courage to acknowledge yourself. More don't than do I'm afraid, and it's always a pleasure to read here.

I'll impart to you what was told to me in grade 7 by a teacher when I was much more meek and timid than I am now. I still struggle with those aspects of my personality and in particular with how what I shoot creates misguided opinions. I don't know who said it, but it's stuck with me to my present ripeness at 42. It will be on my gravestone no doubt:

"Shine after your own fashion and become that polished gem."

You don't need to hear it, you're already there, but I find it's always a lovely thing for me to remember and it should be shared.



Wolf189 Photography said...

you are the journey and you have discovered the windows towards the beauty of your own landscape ...very glad that you are enjoying the view to the fullest.


Your boldness, and words of wisdom are significant elements or so it seems in your shadows.Being confident to stand strong seems as though it is quite possible for you always..BRAVP!

PS: Have you read the book by Kimberly Sowell?

Mockingbird Girl said...

... failing no longer seemed to be something to fear, but more something to learn from. Fear is nothing more than the lack of knowledge. not knowing what to expect is what fear is made of.

I so get this. Around the age of 36-37 I decided I was no longer going to live my life making decisions based on fear. "what if..." I had a Sanskrit word tattooed on the back of my neck: Abhaya. It means "fearlessness", but not in the reckless sense. It means freedom from fear. It also has another meaning - "mental serenity". Because if you aren't afraid, you are at peace.

With peace comes confidence I think, because you stop giving a fuck about so many of the little things... or at least I try to.

p.s. I like you ;-)