Well, I tried to make it completely alliterative. Couldn’t come up with a synonym for two that started with an m…or even in another language… Oh well. Off we go.
I was always looking outside myself for strength and confidence but it comes from within. It is there all the time. – Anna Freud
The password is… confidence.
Confidence is a weird thing for me. Readers of this blog may have happened past a name once or twice, the name of a man who simultaneously inspires me to be amazing and reminds me that my life is nothing remotely like what I want it to be. He’s brilliant, creative, kind, flawed… the perfect sort of inspirational figure. And I willingly, voluntarily, handed him a copy of my self-published, five-year-old volume of short stories and poetry, a volume he sincerely and honestly told my most certainly horrified and panic-stricken face he couldn’t wait to start reading. If it wasn’t horrified and panic-stricken, I have a better poker face than I thought because that’s exactly how I felt.
Confidence in my work has abandoned me since putting that together. I no longer have a network of creative minds pushing me, guiding me, allowing me to push and guide them, feeding off one another, sharing ideas, sharing critiques. I have two good friends who seem to love everything I write. And while I am in no way questioning their sincerity, it leaves me to look for what’s wrong with each piece. To find my own flaws and we are our own worst critics (while searching for the source of that nugget, I found this ironically and comically fitting quote: “Asking a working writer what he thinks about critics is like asking a lamppost how it feels about dogs.” – Christopher Hampton)
Conversely, people have told me my confidence is what drew them to me, what defines me to them. Is it possible to fake confidence, to put on a facade while on the inside you want nothing more than a place to hide? I guess that’s not entirely true. With certain people, in certain situations, I am more confident. I just feel more comfortable.
As much as I hate it, I am a born leader. I am a very take charge kind of person, even though I’m perfectly content hide in the back of the room and let others make all the decisions. But as soon as I hear the Others leaning toward a choice that I envision dying any one of a hundred horrible, fiery deaths, I jump in and persuade them to do things my way. That doesn’t make me bossy, DON’T JUDGE ME!
So, confidence is a weird thing for me. I have it when it doesn’t seem to matter but in my passion, my art, my words, I don’t have it as much as I did before.