I hosted a meeting today that I really enjoyed and it got me thinking. Thinking about the roles we play in this crazy theatre of life.
The meeting was with a group of ladies who all have a similar job to mine. The thing that ties us most closely together is that, in our respective agencies, we are the only ones who have that job. We do not have a team of colleagues that we can turn to for support, advice or the occasional griping session. We often work in isolation and most people in our agencies don't quite understand what we do.
Put us together in a room and it's absolutely cathartic. To be with people who understand, really understand, is such a gift.
And it got me thinking about the roles we play. As I started thinking about them, it began to feel like we just spend our lives moving from one stage to another. Not that I'm acting, or lying about who I am, just that I can't be everything for every person. It doesn't make sense to live life that way.
At home I am the loving partner, the unconditional friend, the kitchen mate and midnight confidante. At work, I am the rights advocate, staff trainer, accreditation queen and policy girl. There is very little overlap between those two worlds. I don't want there to be. But I also think that people from one world would be surprised to see me in the other. In many ways, I would be a stranger.
At the diabetes centre, I am the healthy, happy, active runner. They know nothing about my job, my love of cooking or the fact that I'm really into curling. At the running group, I'm the girl with the insulin pump who is slow but getting faster and who does a lot of the really long runs on her own. I am the big sister who gets the jokes and understands the traditions. I am the eldest daughter who helps solve computer problems, loves Sunday dinners and occasionally makes shocking announcements. At the bank, I am the competent customer with a good credit rating and at the bulk food store I am the quiet girl who buys a whole lot of dates, peanut butter and raisins.
I have some friends with whom I share a love of photography, of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, of the Outlander books or of red wine. I have some friends who share medical adventures, a love of Northern Ontario camping, a passion for theatre or an interest in biology. I am always me but I am always different. Everyone knows a part but no one knows the whole person.
We share what makes sense in each world that we're in. There is no point in talking about Buffy at home, the conversation would be rather one-sided. I'm not going to talk about policy development with my running group, they don't care. In each of our worlds, we find the common ground and build from there.
So today I spent the day with a group of ladies who know me like no one else does. It was nice.
Tonight, I'm spending the evening with the man who knows me like no one else does. That will also be nice.
Tomorrow, the next day and the day after that, I will spend time with people who know me as no one else does.
I wonder, if you put them all together, what I would look like.