Day 11

What are you?

About a year ago, a good friend of mine (thank you Tom Lane) asked me this question.

What are you?

At the time I answered, “A Ray of LIght.”  Years ago, I would have said, a triathlete, a mom, a teacher…a woman.

I am...

Every word in our vocabulary carries with it the history of every experience we’ve ever had associated with that word.  According to Websters Dictionary, the definition of mother is: a female parent.  But come on…when I see the word mother or read the word mother, it brings along a whole list of images and informal definitions that are the result of my experiences with what the word mother represents to ME.

That’s why when I say “I am a mom” I am personally expressing one thing, but more than likely you are interpreting it as something different.  Every word carries with it a slew of additional meanings because we all have unique histories and unique contexts through which the word must pass first before it receives the meaning we are giving it in our thoughts/brains.  It is the space between words–this  in between..in which I am fascinated…where the energy that radiates from our history/perception/context with that word is experienced.  I believe it is somewhere in this space of nothing or in between where “what I am” exists…its not a word, but an experience, a whisper or breeze.

That’s why when I ask “who are you?” a response such as “a runner” doesn’t really tell me what you are…but it tells me what you do!

So…I’m not kidding…I really want to hear because I am on this journey with you too…“WHAT ARE YOU?”  I am sure that the insight I yearn for, is there for me to see.

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17 Responses to Day 11

  1. Andi Whaley says:

    I think I should respond before I think about it too much: I am a seeker. Does that make sense? I am always looking for something, and often finding not what I expected, but then I seek what the meaning is of that experience…

  2. Elaine says:

    I am a listening presence.

  3. Ruth says:

    I am a sponge, taking in everything till saturated; release and repeat.

  4. JM says:

    I am here; I am listening; I am optimistic; I am ambivalent; I am trying; I am determined; I am creative; I am organized; I am evolving; I am a thinker and a do’er; I am compassionate but cautious of my emotions; I am lucky; I am breathing; I am watching; I am who you see and who you, nor even I, can’t see; I am impatient; I am self-critical; I am learning to internalize forgiveness; I am letting go but I want to loosen my grip and open to trust yet more; I am social but private; I am appreciative of humility but grateful for the confidence to enjoy gifts and compliments; I am not always sure I am worthy of feeling worthy; I am breathing; I am waiting; I am expectant; I am joy, grief, relief and resolve; I am loyalty; I am perservernece; I am committed; I am.

  5. You all are so, so SO beautiful…in addition to all the amazing things you have written here.

  6. This is a hard question.

    In the Bible there is a story where Moses asks God who who he should tell his followers God is. The answer God gives is, “Tell them that I am that I am”. Now this has always confused the heck out of me. I mean what kind of answer is that? But when you consider synonyms for “am” words like “stay” and “prevail” and “sustain” pop up. God’s answer makes more sense when I look at it that way.

    Now I am not comparing myself to God, but since I am a salty old sailor I will take a que from Him, and from another great pipe-chewin’, spinach-gulpin’ figure from my youth and just say, “I yam what I yam”.

    • Celia says:

      I am very new to GOTR and have been reading through Molly’s blog(s). This has absolutely nothing to do with Molly’s question….I’m still thinking about that…..but I HAD to reply to your comment. I lost my Dad two years ago…..and his nickname was Popeye…..and when I read your comment it brought tears to my eyes…….and a big smile to my face. I yam what I yam……words that bring a song to my heart…….Popeye the Sailor Man…….

  7. Josh says:

    I am afraid of failure. Or afraid of success. Or I love the possibility of both. Or neither. Or something altogether different. On the other hand, if I knew who I was already, wouldn’t that make the next 10, 40, 75 years rather boring? The fun part of life if that, if you do it right, you never know. Or at least never have a definite answer. For, if the “answer” doesn’t change/evolve/flip-on-its-head then I’m probably not doing that either. And THAT would be a real shame. I think. But I’m not sure.

    • Josh!!!! As always…you push me to think…ponder…observe! I’m so glad to connect!

      On the other hand there is something very calming, peaceful and content-bringing about knowing WHAT we are and then allowing it to manifest in our exciting, dynamic and every changing lives. Does this make sense?

      • “…there is something very calming, peaceful and content-bringing about knowing WHAT we are…”.

        This made me think. Josh’s answer sort of explores the question with the emphasis on the word “KNOWING” rather than the “WHAT” that immediately follows. What if you took the emphasis off WHAT and moved it one word over in the other direction to WE?

        Can I, and should I, try to answer the question “What am I?” before answering the question “What are WE?” (in this case “we” meaning all of us together)?

        In other words, could this be true too, “…there is something very calming, peaceful and content-bringing about knowing what WE are…”.

        Which is the best way to approach this?:
        WE are ____ because I am _____. or
        I am _____ because WE are _______.

  8. Ruth Ness says:

    Ooooo Robert, I like that!!!!
    For me, without we, I wouldn’t be.

  9. Trish says:

    Hi Molly – I just tagged you! Hope you’ll play along! I know its silly, but that’s often what we need! 🙂 http://mypathtotravel.blogspot.com/2011/02/rest-is-still-unwritten.html

  10. Cissy says:

    I am me! No longer trying to be someone or something else. I now know that “me” is all I need to be. I accept that “me” is not perfect but finally a pefect fit for me. “Me” wants to serve Him, and make a difference. “Me” has many roles; mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend, director,runner, but all combine to make me “me”.

  11. Nicole says:

    Well this one really got me thinking… and my answer?

    I don’t know yet. I am trying to figure that out, and frankly it is a journey I am thrilled to finally be taking.

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