It’ll all just a matter of perception.

In past posts we have ascertained that, yes, I was that weird girl at school, the girl who hid behind her hair in any sort of large crowd, who pulled out of any type of active past time for fear of her co-ordination skills deficiency, who tried so desperately to be one of the “golden kids” but still for some reason thought that it was perfectly okay to have The Monkees, Ugly Kid Joe and Silverchair following each other on a mix tape (ain’t nothing wrong with good ol’ “Daydream Believer” to get you in the mood for some “I hate everything About You”.)

And we are also perfectly clear on my frustration with people who can’t see past their own nose to the viewpoints of others.

Yet, the image I have supplied you with of my teenage self is completely based on my own perception (I can’t help it, I’m ME!) and a friend unwittingly reminded me today that others saw me differently – I believe the words were something along the lines of “you don’t see yourself very clearly” which actually shocked me somewhat because here I was, all of thirty years old and I know exactly who I am and who I was, thankyou very much! But indeed, after some contemplation I do concede… others may not have seen me in the same light as I saw myself.

In some sort of “Romy and Michelles High School Reunion” moment (you know that part when Heather says to Michelle “All that time you guys were making my life hell, the A group was doing the same thing to you!”) I realised that whilst I looked with covetous eyes upon the nameless Queens of our school and thought how lucky they were to have popularity and friends, I too was being perceived by others as one of the lucky ones. It slammed back into my memory something I had forgotten long ago – it doesn’t matter what you do, or how you act, or what you try to make people see, they will always see you how they want to see you, and most likely what they see will not match up to what you see yourself.

So now I am sitting here, amongst other parents waiting to pick up their children from school whilst idly gossiping to pass the time, and I am once again the outcast in the corner (only this time my mix tape has been replaced with an MP3 sporting Pink and Lady Gaga and the sheltering curtain of hair that covered my teen face finds perfect substitute in oversized sunnies and some Maybelline lip-gloss), hiding behind a pen and notepad, only rarely emerging to play the social game, so intrinsic to others (no I don’t want to talk about the latest issue you have with the parenting style of so and so’s mother, yes I do know that whathisname wet his pants the other day, no I don’t particularly want to talk about that either) and I wonder if they see me as I have just described. Likely not. Perhaps those parents I am friendlier with see me as my high school friends once did; likely they each have their own view of who I am. But then who is right?

How does one accurately portray themselves without their own obviously confined and perhaps misguided views of their lives? I suppose it’s impossible, and the only way you can really know how others perceive you is to have trusted and honest friends who will tell you the truth. And even then, it’s all just perception isn’t it. So if every opinion that every person has of you is merely perception (including our own) – how on Earth are we supposed to know who we are?

And because I have no definitive answer for you (and perhaps there is none to this conundrum) I shall leave you with a quote from Romy and Michelle – not because it pertains to anyway in what I’m saying… just cos it makes me laugh.

“You know, even though I had to wear that stupid back brace and you were kind of fat, we were still totally cutting edge.”

Have a Romy and Michelle Day!

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~ by Alissa Anderton on April 20, 2010.

2 Responses to “It’ll all just a matter of perception.”

  1. u know we’re superstars
    we r who we r

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