Each one of us has a different set of influences which contribute to and position our priorities in life.
I think it is a rare bird that was born into a situation that is less than ideal and ends up blossoming into a completely different person. It takes a lot of strength, a lot of knowledge and a lot of patience.
If I sat down and thought about my priorities, two seem to be high up on the list: My love and My career. I know what my more religious friends are thinking, what about God? See, I don't separate God from anything. God is the reason I have a love in the first place (I believe he brought us together) and my career is a blessing also. I don't feel the need to flaunt my beliefs because God is in and is the reason it all exists in the first place.
With that being said, my top two priorities are my Husband and my Career. It's the truth. I love being in love. Who would have ever thought I would say that? If I could just get over the silly cultural differences and settle into a compromise (not easy for someone at my age and my personality) - I would be okay.
My career, because - not that it is the truth - but often times I identify myself by what I do. Those of us working, and doing what we are proud of, tend to do that. Kind of like the SAHMs.. you guys identify yourself through and by your children. I, on the other hand, do not have children, so my legacy will be what I give back to this world in the form of what I do with my life. I take it very seriously.
I think if you are a parent, then you need to nourish that kid both spiritually, physically, and emotionally. THAT is your legacy. If you are lucky enough, and talented enough to also leave an amazing mark by way of career - then you deserve recognition for your sacrifices, because I am sure it is not easy.
Now back to the priorities: If you ask people what their interests are, I think you have a pretty good insight into their priorities. For fun, I thought I would review what I wrote on my Blog Profile wall as my "interests." I listed them in the following order:
I would say that hit the nail on the head. I might actually rearrange the order, if I were being completely honest with myself. Though, in a profile, the order can make all the difference in how "interesting" we portray ourselves. I might reorder it this way in what is ACTUAL:
1. Writing (b/c I do it all day, every day- both work and play)
2. Coffee (b/c it is the #1 ingredient in my tummy)
3. Conversation (fueled by coffee, I am a talker)
4. Reading (My one escape)
5. Cinema (OBSESSED - another escape)
6. Photography (I like to tell a story through pictures)
7. Travel (I want to be inspired)
After taking a good hard look at this, I like to think my interests have mainly stayed the same throughout the years, but perhaps my priorities have changed. My influences have changed.
As a child and teenager and even as a young adult, I was always fascinated by clothing and makeup and jewelry and perfume. I used to play in my Grandma Betty's jewelry box. I used to mark catalogs and magazines of outfits I wished I had, I would get into my mother's makeup box and try to recreate what I saw in magazines. I wanted to be thought of as beautiful. I wanted to be admired.
I remembered as a kid how on two instances someone really insulted me and the way I looked. Well, 3 times - and it really pushed me to try so hard to look nicer, and in turn - shifted my priorities. Not something I am proud of.
1. A little boy on the basketball court in elementary school names Rodney Chambers once insulted me about my clothes. He was a kid that misbehaved a lot, and I think I read back in the mid 90's that he was shot and killed. One day he did something he was not supposed to do, I can't remember what it was. But none of the kids would fess up and say what he did. Then Mr. Campbell, our PE teacher, turned to me and asked did "Rodney do ___?" Because I was always scared of getting in trouble and have always had a hard time lying - shook my head yes. Then Rodney screeched, "But Mr. Campbell, what does she know? She is poor, look.. look Mr. Campbell," and he pulled up my pants leg, "She doesn't even have any socks on."
Bahahahahaha. NOW - as an adult, I laugh. Perhaps I just forgot to put socks on with my tennis shoes, I was a little girl - who knows. But what I do remember is all of the kids started laughing. I think that was a turning point for me. I became aware of the my "unawareness" of fashion. Up until that moment - I did not really care.
2. I remember in 5th grade, LaTonya (a little girl in my class) asked two little boys if they thought I was pretty. I was sitting nearby, I don't know why she did it, or what the point was, but I remember waiting with baited breath.. "Oh please, oh please, tell her I am pretty." Then I heard one of the boys say, "Nicki? No way - she is a dog."
3. In 7th grade, one of the girls that lived in my neighborhood decided to "gang up" on me and for whatever reason was always looking for ways to put me down. I remember in one of her tirades she decided to tell me how tacky I dressed. That my wearing a Florescent Green sweatshirt (I know, I know.. but it was the 80s, and I liked it!) was tacky. So, in turn, she could not hang around with me.
Well, needless to say - I started paying attention to everything. Vogue, Seventeen, YM, Cosmo, Glamor magazine - they were like a bible to me.
I am telling you all of this because I saw a PSA today that spoke - to ME. Well two things really, the whole idea of bullying and this PSA. Watch it please:
Need I say more?
What influenced you (I don't mean the shiny happy stuff.. )but the real influences?