“He’s about your age, Aunt Amy, about 60.”
I laughed and laughed and laughed. She whacked my arm in embarrassment since my utter hysterics indicated her accuracy, or lack-there-of. I’m as close to 60 as I am to 30, that is, not very. It serves me right for asking a niece to judge a person’s age. A Sunday School teacher was having a birthday and the question I posed was, is he about my age or Grandma and Grandpa’s?
The prompt this week at Velvet Ashes is “voice” – what does age have to do with voice? In writing it’s important to sound like yourself and not like someone else. That’s called voice.
It’s the same in life.
It’s important to be yourself. To be your “real” age. To walk in your own shoes. Not to try to be as interesting, funny, smart, good looking, or have the language ability of X.
Might you need to keep growing? Sure. I’m not saying to just sit on your fanny and do nothing.
I know when I try to write like this blogger or that author, there is a falseness to it. A forcedness. When I picture talking to one of you and just write I’m more likely to sound like me.
It is hard to be yourself, sometimes, isn’t it? I want to be lovely like Emily P. Freeman. And while I’m many things, I’m no Emily P. Freeman. And then there is Emily Thomas who has the sense of humor of a firecracker. (Maybe I need to change my name to Emily, maybe that’s the hidden life lesson.) Or deep and insightful like Tanya Marlow, which blows my name theory. I’m not a mom, I don’t craft, I haven’t saved any lives recently, and my cooking skills are adequate (not really the most inspiring adjective, is it?). And on and on the list goes.
What was the operative word of that list? No, not. If I look at all the things, I’m not, and will never be because they are related to personality and preference, not character or personal growth or sin, I feel like a deflated balloon.
But if you want to know who screamed like a wounded wildebeest at the last Broncos game and I’m sure helped in distracting Philip Rivers and leading to a victory. I’m your woman.
Or, when pressed by nieces as to my favorite animals. Do you mean domesticated or wild? BOTH. Then you will find someone who loves guinea pigs and … OK, I forget my favorite wild animal, showing I may not actually have one.
Or if you need someone to remind you of the marvels of pi, just you wait until Pi Day this year! I’ve been gathering more cartoons and videos and delighting afresh on God ability to be present in unexpected places.
Or if you’d like to know a good memoir, I might just have a list for you.
Or talk about China, do you have, like, five hours?!
And guess what, the list of who I am, what MY voice is, flew out of me. It was fun to write and I feel a bit excited and like I might grab the guy to my left and in the library and hug him because I feel alive. When I was thinking about those Emilys and that Tanya– two of whom are my friends and I really like —I was deflated. And isn’t this what the enemy of our souls wants? If not to defeat us, to deflate us.
So, stop thinking about the Emilys and Tanyas in your life. And they will stop thinking about you. Be you, the you were made to me. And if that involves sounding like wounded animals, so be it :)!
What’s your voice? When do you most sound like you? What’s your favorite animal (yes, both domestic and wild!)
Linking up with The Grove at Velvet Ashes. Word prompt: Voice