free to be me

I adored Pippi Longstocking from her braids to her zany style to her love of life. She was what I wanted to be.

I was a serious girl. I was quiet and nice. My imagination was nothing like, well, me. It was full of color and longing and dreaming up scenarios that were otherworldly. In Pippi I found a kindred spirit. Her outsides matched my insides.

I wanted to speak up when justice didn’t prevail. I wanted to weave tall tales so that people couldn’t help but listen to me. I wanted to wear long mismatched socks. And having a suitcase full of gold coins would have made me a hit.

I was a quintessential late bloomer. It took me a long time to grow into my voice. Confidence was a game I couldn’t win. Finding myself was the theme of almost every movie in the 80s and my plight.

After years of trying on Pippi and others like her I discovered that the me I was looking for was right there all along. The search was over. I had found her and I had been shortchanging her for too long. I did know how to have fun. My scatteredness (it’s a word!) surely meant I had some zany in me. I had a voice. I learned how to use it. Confidence became a resource I could draw upon. I would no longer call myself ugly or I could never do that or doesn’t matter. I am significant. I have purpose. I belong here.

The Pippis, the women we admire and other amazing people that cross our paths are not there to become carbon copies of, but are there to inspire us. I still sometimes compare and contrast myself with others. Some habits die hard. But, as I get older, as I learn and live and grow I see myself more clearly. I’m not struggling with the vain pursuit of trying to be something else or someone I’m not, but, happily and peacefully exist as myself.

Swept Up

In my nomination?!
That’s right; it’s my very first nomination of anything! Unless you count me nominating myself for pretend Oscars or the fake funniest girl in school award. I wasn’t the funniest. Far from. I just wished I could be. If you’ll look to your right, close to the top of the page, there’s a little badge stating that I’ve been nominated for the blogitzer award and, yes, I’m asking you to vote. The lovely Kate from The Big Piece of Cake nominated me. Now, there is a funny and smart blog. I’m not sure what a blogitzer is, but if you’re so inclined click on the badge and cast your vote for me…the blogitzer.

That’s me with my family looking like your run of the mill blogitzer…not really. I don’t have any recent photos of myself. My friend, photographer extraordinaire, Anastasia Chomlack, took this last summer along with tons of other photos. She’s over on my list of favorites. She is truly, truly a gifted photographer. In fact, my plan is to feature her in one of my swept up items soon!!

10 thoughts on “free to be me

  1. thezeninyou

    Congrats! I will nominate you! I love this photo of your family…so genuine and happy!

    In regards to Pippi…she is in all of us…we just need to access that part of ourselves that is real and spunky!

  2. you gotta wonder

    Congratulations on the nomination! I voted!

    Sometimes I think the world is an intricate web of relationships that can give opportunities to inspire. You’re inspired by someone. You inspire me. I hope I can inspire someone. They in turn inspire someone else. Eventually we’ll all be lifted higher by our shared life experiences.

    Meanwhile, I’m late for work. The Pippi in me stills gets me in trouble – “caution to the wind!”

  3. Kate Coveny Hood

    This sounds so much like me as a kid. While I seemed very quiet and bookish on the outside – I really lived in my imagination.

    Probably for the best as the “wild girl” outlet when you’re young tends to involve more boys and booze than worrying about justice and making bold fashion choices.

    You always have my vote!

  4. sugarlens

    I really like that picture of your family! So happy and natural. You have my vote!

  5. kendalee

    And what a great voice your own is!!! I’m so glad you not only found it but choose to share it with us here. It inspires me, you inspire me – to be more me.

    No idea what a blogitzer is even now that I’ve been to find out but it looks like it’s something about being a ‘jolly fine blogger’ as we might say in the UK, so I voted for you! :o)

  6. Heidi

    thanks all…i might only get 10 votes, but i appreciate every one of them. 😉 i’ve always wanted to say, it’s an honor to be nominated….

  7. Dorkys Ramos

    Congrats on being nominated! I’m off to vote as soon as I publish this comment. And I always thought Pippi was such the little character going off on her own adventures, making friends, and no parents in sight 🙂

  8. dawn

    not only did you find your voice, but you positively SING!

    congratulations lovely you on your nomination and you surely have my vote. always.

    xo

  9. Suz Broughton

    Just lovely and isn’t that the truth about getting older?
    Congrats on your nomination and the picture of your family is stunning. I’ve never seen you all together before. It made me smile.

  10. Isabella Snow

    Ah, but I think you have found your voice, Heidi. And what a lovely voice it is! Speaking of lovely, what family! And congrats on your nomination!! 🙂

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