I’ve been told more than once or twice that I seem shy compared to my personality online. It makes me wonder if people feel disappointed, or deceived, because the voice they’re used to hearing on my blogs or on Twitter doesn’t match up exactly with the one in real life.
Most of the time, I feel the need to apologize for this. We always hear about how we need to be authentic in social media, how we need to represent ourselves in an honest way.
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately and it kinda just hit me: These are all true versions of me.
Yes, maybe my writing voice is a little more outgoing than I am when I meet a person for the first time. But isn’t that the beauty of social media? What writer hasn’t felt more comfortable sharing pieces of herself with the world from the safety of her desk and computer screen? This is still me, just a version that, in person, might take a bit longer to come out and show itself. And it’s not something I can control: I might go to one event and feel totally in my element. I might go to another and wonder if I’m being awkward.
My husband, after hearing me worry on and on about this, finally blurted out: “It’s who you are. Why would you change that?”
To say that this simple moment was an epiphany would be an understatement. Why would I change that?
Ever since I was young, I was the quiet girl and I loved it. I loved listening to people talk, watching their nervous ticks, the way their body gave them away. I loved staring out the window to take the world in, zooming in on details that others might not notice. I never once felt excluded; I was like the historian in a group, recording all the important bits.
It’s probably why I became a writer, and if it is, I would never take it back.
Do you ever feel like your personae don’t match up?