I Can’t Be Me, But I Can Be Her

posted in: Day In The Life 17
Well, they’re not my style. But what a woman! Shoes, c. 1720, England. From LACAMA, via Wikipedia.


I do this thing.

When I’m struggling to get something done, or when I have to make a tough phone call, or when I need to do/be/sound better than feel, I just pretend I’m someone else.

Now, I don’t go by a different name or anything. I don’t misrepresent who I am. That would be super weird. This is an internal thing I do, an inner monologue type situation. When faced with something I feel powerless to do — and you better believe sometimes that’s just like, getting out of the house and being a person in the world — I say to myself, often out loud:

“Well, I can’t do this. So I’m just going to pretend I’m a woman who can.”

Sometimes I pretend I’m a Katherine Hepburn type or a Madonna type. It’s not that I’m doing an impression or that I would trust Madonna’s judgement in all things. It’s that I need to channel a woman who seems like she would not be afraid of X, Y, or Z.

Shoes help me here, too.

If I am feeling weak, feeling sunk, it helps me every time if I put on a pair of smart shoes. I’ll brush the dirt off my shoulders (metaphorical dirt, usually, but you never know), buckle myself into a snappy shoe, and bing. Something changes. Suddenly, my feet are stronger, more … accounted for, strangely? Yes, I become more accounted for, somehow, on the Earth. And this makes me better able to pretend to be someone else who can do all the things I can’t.

It’s then that I can walk out the door. And wonder of wonders, the woman I’m pretending to be?

She does okay.

17 Responses

  1. Sue
    | Reply

    You’re one tough cookie and I admire you so much in many ways!!!

  2. Victoria
    | Reply

    I like you! From the first moment I saw you in a quilting tutorial I liked you. You are a genuine human being who strives to do better on a daily basis- one day at a time. And your not afraid to hide your ups and downs. I’ve read a few of your blogs, and I still like you!

    • J Michael Voiles
      | Reply

      Hey Victoria. It was the same for me also. Does she have us hypnotized? Can she tell me to quit smoking or loose 20lbs and I would? Please tell me Ms. Fons, and keep from hoarding your fabric. rooster

  3. Pat B
    | Reply

    And I thought I was the only one who did that. As a tweenager and teenager I was terribly shy. So, I learned to pretend I was Not shy. I still pretend sometimes. Its the only way to function in public sometimes. I haven’t tried the shoe trick – that has possibilities. Remember Christopher Robin and Pooh!

  4. Terri
    | Reply

    I tried your clay shampoo and it worked for me too. Today I will be “that girl”. Powerful idea!

  5. Jo Chalk
    | Reply

    Mary, I have use this technique many times. It works!

  6. HelenMarie Marshall
    | Reply

    Yes! I tried to pass that very gift to my dear daughters. It didn’t work. I still do it anyway. But less often! At 76. Sometimes it is the very best way to get through a day of stuff I must do, but would really rather not. Like at my guild I would rather be in the back of the room at the quilting frame than up on the stage doing announce,ends or trying to cajole others into helping with some inelegant or menial or trivial seeming task that MUST BE DONE! So I don my POWER outfit and carry on.

  7. HelenMarie Marshall
    | Reply

    It can be a cool pair of shoes, a really colorful scarf, quirky earrings…..

  8. Nadine Donovan
    | Reply

    I can so relate to this. I do something very similar- not through shoes- but a certain top and certain jewelry. You gotta do what you have to do to make your world ok to function in!

  9. Christina
    | Reply

    This reminds me of a study that showed you are better able to do things you don’t want to if you talk to yourself in the third person!

  10. Karen
    | Reply

    Sometimes we all need a little bit of Wonder Woman’s Lasso of Truth, indestructible bracelets, tiara, sword, and shield to help us through the day. Glad you found yours!!

  11. Dayna from Wisconsin
    | Reply

    Mme too. And I love that quirky shoe~

  12. Cari Goode
    | Reply

    I just love how your brain works Mary Fons! What a fabulous way to pick yourself up and prevail in your duties. I think I might need to try that one on for size!

  13. Jann
    | Reply

    Sometimes just when you need a little extra help, you get an absolutely amazing, right-on-the-spot post and it makes everything better! Your post did that for me today . Little blessings!

  14. Barbara
    | Reply

    With everything else you are doing, I wish you were still making tutorials so we can follow along. I miss that.

  15. Angela Clemons
    | Reply

    Nancy Sinatra would agree with this post. (These Boots are Made for Walkin’)

  16. Ginny R
    | Reply

    Such an inspiration you are! I needed this today! Thank you from a fellow Iowan.

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