I'm stealing the idea for this blog. Yesterday I was just popping from blog to blog and I read one that I enjoyed. I wish I'd written the blog name down so I could credit the source, oh well. The person was responding to a challenge to come up with five adjectives to describe themselves. In their post they wondered if people would list their 'difference' in that list. Would the word 'gay' or 'disabled' or 'fat' or any of a number of possibilities be listed. How deeply or closely do you identify yourself with what you are - would you list 'woman' or 'man', 'black or white'?
I tried it out on Joe and he came up with five adjectives and afterwards I told him that I thought it was interesting that he didn't list 'gay' as one of them. He became a bit flustered (they're like that) and said, "It didn't even cross my mind." Then he asked me to do the same. Well, it was a bit unfair because I'd read the blog and knew that the blogger was interested in how people percieve and incorporate their difference into their view of themselves. I can never know if I would have put either gay or disabled into my list, after receiving a prompt, it's hard not to.
I do think I would have put 'disabled' into my list because I spend so much time on disability issues and concerns. I don't think I would have put 'gay' into my list because it's just been so who I am for so long that I don't think about it as being separate from me at all. So what were my words...
The first two ... committed and passionate ... came easy. I have been committed to the cause of justice, freedom and respect for people with disabilities for almost all of my life. I have never waivered, never been really tempted to do other things. I am a true believer. I believe that we are on the right road, making the right journey and, most importantly, going in the right direction. I believe we are miles from our destination to be sure, but we are also miles from the starting line. It's a trek. Out of this committment comes passion. Passion fuels my belief and gives me the energy to do what I do.
Those two words came easily. The next were much more difficult. The tendency is to simply list positive words, but I'm more complex than that. I am not just a ray of sunshine. So I chose 'outspoken'. This can be a good thing, it can be a bad thing. Just like the next word. 'Impulsive,' I tend to react and just do something because I think it needs to be done, it needs to be done right now and if you won't do it, then screw it, I will. I remember a couple of years ago when I decided that I wanted to work for an agency on a special project. I told a friend of mine who shook her head and said, "You'd make the worst employee." She saw my need to speak out and my impulsive nature as being something that would drive any executive director mad within weeks. Well, I've been at the job for over two years now and, last I checked, the boss was still sane - maybe with a tick or two, but still sane. It's been interesting trying to marshal my outspoken nature and impulsive approach into the need to work as a team.
The last word is really difficult because it's the last one and so many are in the running. I'm going to say 'thoughtful' not because I am that, but because I want to be that. I know that's not fair, that's not what the task was, but rules are made to be broken ... so I'm sticking with thoughtful. I want to be a caring person, one who notices and responds with care and kindness ... maybe if I say it here, I'll remember it there.
So, here it is, a challenge ... your five words? Just list them in comments or if you do a blog, post the address so we can all drop in.