#reverb 11: Who are you?

One of the great things about so many people creating reverb prompts is that there are so many different ways to be inspired. I am using a combination of prompts this year and trying to follow along with others who writing similar posts but also enjoying reading others' posts that use different prompts. It's less focused than having one central location from which prompts and links flow, but it's also adventurous, seeking out what everyone is writing like a scavenger hunt. For my reverb11, I'm working mostly from Megan Collier's prompts.

However, today, I'm responding to Diana Prichard's prompt as a way to introduce or re-introduce myself, but also because we've been talking a lot about this question and how to craft stories about ourselves in my classes. What better way to take this under consideration? 

Who are you?

Describe yourself.


Reading Mrs. Dalloway for the 3rd time

There are so many ways to begin, so many ways to answer the question "who am I?" And I've answered it a number of ways throughout my life and on this blog. It isn't always an easy question to answer; we are complex people. We like and dislike things which help describe us and give insight to our personality. But who we are, in shade and in shadow, in sunlight and rain are still only shimmers, glimpses of who we are. I think that's the best we can hope for and one of the reasons I participate in this reflective practice of looking back and then forward is to help me see those glimpses.

I am a storyteller. I am a teacher of writing by profession and a writer by heart. I will read anything put in front of me. I read a lot of non-fiction and memoir. My favorite book is whatever I am reading at the moment. You can follow me on Goodreads

I am a lesbian. I am also a wife, marrying my partner of 7 years this Fall. It was an amazing event. It still breaks my heart that my family did not come, especially because so much of who I am is entangled in my family, our history.

I am Southern and most of what I know about life began in kitchens. I wrote about this last year as a response to exploring the core story of my life. I said then that stories are at the core of my life and this part particularly resonates: Between my grandparents’ kitchen and the garage I came of age, steeped in fierce independence and longing.

I have always yearned. It was not always clear for exactly what. Stability. Safety. Love. Worthiness. All disguised in relationships, contests, outward validation, recklessness. I always thought of myself as driven, determined, convinced if I could just get to this next point in my life, I would be happy. I constantly searched for something more and maybe in some ways, I'm still doing that in certain areas of my life, trying to determine the balance between the secret whispers of what I want and the conflicting need to have roots and wings. I am a searcher, sometimes a researcher, sometimes a wanderer. 

I love to laugh hard. I enjoy when something makes me gasp and ache from laughter. I can be too serious for my own good, sometimes. Knowing how to laugh was something my great-grandmother did well. She laughed with her entire being. I'm learning how to let that much joy overflow. 

There are certain TV series that I own the complete series and that I actually re-watch. These include Sex and the City, Gilmore Girls, Supernatural, The L Word (with the exception of the last season) and One Tree Hill. I am re-watching Lost on Netflix and I kind of want Dawson's Creek because it was such a huge part of my college life. 

I am completely unorganized though I love lists and planning and calendars and school supplies like pens and notepads. I collect notebooks and journals. I also collect robot kitsch and just about anything with an owl on it. I have a mild obsession with purses and bags. 

I sing loudly and off key to any song I know the words to. I have an insane amount of trivial knowledge about pop culture stuck in my brain, including lyrics to songs, movie lines and other random information. 

I am terrible at reading maps, have no sense of direction and hopeless without my phone or navigation device. 

I love food, cooking eating, conversations over dinner, the experience of being nourished not just by what I eat but who I'm sharing a meal with. 

My favorite color is blue, especially teal and cerulean. I like the color of the sky just before the sun drops out of sight. 

I take photographs. I am working on a 365 project, taking a photograph a day for a year. This is the 3rd year I've tried such a project. We were able to purchase a camera with wedding present money and gift cards, so we want to use it as much as possible and learn about the camera. We're doing the 365 together and I feel really lucky to share this passion with the woman I love. You can see our photos so far in our Flickr Group.

I have a Starbucks addiction. Iced Caramel Macchiato or Iced Black Tea or Caramel Frappucino. I also like the Cinnamon Dolce Latte. Amazing! I have a gift card I'm trying to use up and I feel like I'm cheating on my Keurig whenever I go. 

I will be 34 this year, in January. I am looking forward to it. 

I am emotional and can be really selfish but I also love my friends and my partner fiercely. I have been told I am intense and intimidating. I can be really goofy and weird, too. Especially when I dance. I am clumsy and awkward. 

I am almost never bored. 

Music is my rescue and solace. Always. I have no musical talent whatsoever. Unless you count video games like Rock Band and Guitar Hero and I'm not really that good at those, so never mind. 

My favorite ice-cream is strawberry. Peanut butter and chocolate come a close second. I love the flavor blue raspberry because it is completely made up and there is something wonderful about that. I am obsessed with Christmas lights, always have been. I remember driving around neighborhoods with my family to see all the different designs and celebrations of Christmas. I think there's something magical about twinkle lights, the light in darkness. 

I believe in magic. I believe in making relationships work. I believe in love, the soul encompassing, kissing in the rain, reaching for someone's hand in the middle of the night, being happy just because the other person is, laughing in good and bad times, finding comfort in one another's words kind of love. And I never want to take it for granted.