by Tracee Sioux
Oh the roles we play. . . Is this news to anyone? I’ve always known that I play roles and even been aware of them when I’m doing it. Some of my most common roles:
When I was a teenager and young adult I played “cute flirty blond girl with a little attitude.” It worked for me. Got me attention from the opposite sex. Allowed me to blend in the newsroom. Allowed me to get away with what I wanted to do. I recall having gained quite a bit of weight and being next to the next generation of “cute flirty blond girl with a little attitude” and seeing quite clearly that this role was not going to work for me anymore. Oddly, I was okay with seeing her go.
Other roles I play are Mean Mommy and Fun Mommy. I vacillate between these two depending on the result I want from my children. I put on Mean Mommy so that I can punish poor behavior even though I really don’t want to. I put her on like a costume because inside I’m usually laughing my head off and thinking, Who hasn’t done that? Fun Mommy comes more naturally to me, it’s closer to who I inherently am. But, I still see that I’m motivated by a future “My mom was the coolest mom” scenario.
There is also the many roles of wife. I’ve been a pissed-off wife, a put-upon and fed-up wife. I’ve been a loving wife, a sacrificial wife, an affectionate wife. A wife like my mother. A wife like my friend. A wife like the Christian stereotype says I should be. I’m trying to learn to be a happy wife. A conscious wife.
I play a different role in church than I do other places. I feel it’s safer to go with the flow and the cultural norm. Maybe I come off as fake?
Black sheep who left the fold. I obviously play this role. It’s more circumstantial than anything. They love me, I love them, but they are deeply invested in a very specific religious ideology that comes with a whole culture and collective conscience that I have opted out of. Sometimes I feel it’s more a role they put me in than one I play.
I frequently play the role of feminist. I write a lot about feminism, so obviously I’m identifying with the group ego of “women who aren’t treated equally.” I think it’s a role I will continue to play. But, with consciousness, hopefully I’ll be able to do it more effectively.
Writer is a role I deeply identify with. And I realize this is only what I “do.” But it feels so integral to who I AM that when I have experimented with “doing” other things I become unhappy and disconnected from myself. I think I will also strive to do it consciously and reap the benefits of increased awareness and passion.
What roles do you see in yourself?
Are you aware of them when you’re playing them?
Again, tune into Lisa.fm today at 1 pm central to hear more about roles and consciousness.