Me, Myself and I

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic


This is who I am; me, myself and I

Submitted: August 05, 2018

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Submitted: August 05, 2018

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One day in school, many moons ago, I sat in the corner with a sheet of paper in front of me. Who am I? It said at the top, and below it was a list of questions; how old are you? How many siblings do you have? What's your background? I filled them out, one by one and then held it up to the light. This was, according to a questionnaire handed out by the teacher, who I am. 

I can't say, that the general things which make up your life, don't contribute to who you are. My life will always be defined by the fact that I'm an identical twin, and that I've got a degree. And even though there's only a small influence, I'll always be defined by the fact I have Italian heritage. But these things define me not because I want them too, or will them too, but because others do. I avoid telling people I'm part Italian. I've never lived there, my grandparents are from there. I told someone the other day I don't like spicy food, and they asked if it was because Mediterranean aren't accustomed to spice. I tried not to laugh and instead told them it was probably because my mum never cooked with it much. People ask me if I eat a lot of pizza and pasta and I tell them no, I don't live out of my Nonna's cooking pot. Even if I did, I wouldn't eat a lot of Italian food. My Nonna cooks a lot of pasta yes, but she also cooks a lot of schnitzel, and chicken wings, and her tiramisu recipe is from a Greek lady who used to live next door.

I went to see my sister at her workplace for the first time the other day. When I walked in it a chorus of 'oh wow there's double', and then the usual parade of questions. Who’s older? Smarter? Prettier? Did you get up to a lot of tricks when you were young? No one ever asks any actual questions about us an individual's. 

Sometimes, I'll tell people about what I used to study. I watch as their faces screw up, and the twitch behind their eyes think 'why would anyone want to study that useless crap?' After awhile, when the pride and excitement of starting faded, I found myself asking the same question.

So now here I am; an Italian twin who eats a lot of pasta and knows a bunch of useless crap.

But is that actually who I am? Am I just boxes ticked on a page, with presumptions sitting next to it? Can I be more than that?

So now, it's time for the truth.

I am part Italian, but I'm also part Kiwi, and Maori. I eat a lot of schnitzel, and know more French than Italian. I'm also an identical twin, and my sister and I did not get up to tricks when we were young. We weren't inseparable, but instead we tried to stay as far away from each other as we could. I have completed a degree, where my focus was religion. I learnt a lot about the world, a lot which other people don't know, and when I got that shiny piece of paper, I was pretty darn proud.

I'm also a Christian, and a hopeful writer, a counselling student, constantly stressed, and obsessed with my cat. 

None of the questions on that sheet of paper asked me about who I was on the inside, only what people saw I was on the outside. My twin could’ve answered that questionnaire for me and it would’ve been exactly the same. If I answered all those questions again, it would probably all be the same. I can't say that the things on the outside don't matter, they still make up who we are. But they're not the only thing that matters. 

I will always be Italian, and a twin, and have a religion degree. But I may not always want to be a writer, or stressed, or (though I can't imagine this day coming) obsessed with my cat. Who I am will always be changing. And that's who I want to be. I don't want to be stuck in what people think I am, or in how people define me through what they see. I want to be growing and learning and changing, as I become someone in this world defined not by it, but by myself.

So who am I?

Change.


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