My secret identities

When you see me on the street alone I am: woman, 30 something, brown-skinned, able-bodied, cis-gendered, middle-class.  If I am with my husband and kids you may also see: mother, heterosexual, and married. Hear me speak you may think: American. These categories have meaning as I walk through the world, it’s true. But I have some secret identities too. The ones that tell you who the “I” inside is.  Here they are in random order:

1. Singer of Songs: If there were still bards, I would be one. I spend one morning a month leading a Music Hour for one year olds. I can sing every word of every song in Mary Poppins, and will do so without provocation. I am the annoying person who sings along to every song on the radio, even the ones I don’t know.  I learned to play guitar just well enough to accompany myself when I sing. Song is in every cell of my body.  I am song and song is me.

2. Meddler Extraordinaire:  My favorite character on How I Met Your Mother is Lily because she cannot stop meddling AND she’s awesome at it.  Tell me your troubles and I will try to find a way to fix them. If I can’t fix them, I will find someone who can.  If you don’t know what you’re troubles are, I will tell you in the sweetest, kindest, most condescending way possible.  What can I say? I am just cool like that.

3. Accessory Navicular Survivor:  Why do museums make me sleepy before I’ve even gotten in the door? Why does shopping make me want to throw a tantrum? Why do I always say, “Is there a rabid dog chasing me? Then I’m not running.”   I always thought I was just too lazy to run, or too stupid for museums, or too unfashionable to care about shopping. Turns out, I have this extra bone in my foot that causes intermittent foot pain. I’ve had this recurring foot pain all my life. It sucked and still does, but at least now I know what it’s all about. True story.

My secret identities  are much better predictors of what I will do in a given situation (i.e. sing “The Rose” in the middle of the playground, ask about your relationship with your mother, sit on a bench at the Van Gogh exhibit) than any of those other things.  What are your secret identites?



  1. My Ramblings said,

    May 2, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    I’m number three too, although I never knew there was a name for it! It makes me a terrible historian, because I usually do hate museums (although there are exceptions), and definitely hate shopping–although I like having new clothes:). Also a shower singer, though not brave enough to be an in-public one–and a super secret dancer!

  2. larapayne said,

    May 6, 2012 at 8:37 pm

    I like this, great list and great explanations.

  3. August 28, 2012 at 4:50 pm

    […] by this blog post, I started to think about my secret identities. I, too, tend to sing a lot – but only when no one […]

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