In visible

The dichotomy of being invisible – yet- aching to be seen”

For most of my life, I have felt like a contradiction. In many ways I have felt torn. Torn between countries and roots, girls and boys, good and naughty. It was/is hard being a people pleaser and a sensitive one at that.

I am unearthing a whole lot of things that have kept this contradiction in place and today I came across a very old (or is that young?) vow. I need to be invisible.

I was born into a big family and many had hoped that I was a boy so in a way my birth was met with a disappointment, much like many a baby girl’s birth worldwide sadly. I took this seriously. Yet I was a few seconds old, so how can I know this? Because as early as I can recall, I felt fundamentally flawed. Somehow being a girl wasn’t good enough, so I tried to be the best tomboy I could be, and when that didn’t work, I made myself invisible.

At primary school I did my very best to be a model child, obedient, bright and eager- yet somehow I never felt seen. I was one of those teacher’s pets, and took great pride in being complimented on being a good girl, yet I was never rewarded for it. High school came and the rebel kicked in, but still a ‘good’ rebel. I found a confidence that I projected onto the world and I did some crazy things, but I still never really felt seen.

Fast forward many years and I find myself being complimented for being ‘low maintenance and easy’ yet it no longer feels like a compliment. My invisibility has made for me not speaking up when I should, not saying no, and not charging what I am worth. I made myself small and not needing much yet there is a part of me that feels like Katy Perry and wants to’roar’. It sometimes spills out when defending the weaker or bullied people, yet I cannot blow my own trumpet. Who am I to make a noise? I dodge rude people thrusting their weight about on pavements or shopping aisles, I apologise if they bump into me, and I am often caught holding the door open for too many people (although that is usually in Glasgow). People talk over me, or interrupt my conversation and I passively melt back in to the shadow.

Yet I love giving public talks and revel in the joy of an audience. I  blab constantly on Facebook and at the same time, find my writing voice. I give presentations and workshops and relish the feeling of helping people. I love the idea of being on radio, and when feeling very very brave, will admit – TV. Oprah is a role model, yet I could never push myself  that much.

Instead, I hide. I keep quiet (mostly) and mind my tongue. I be a ‘good girl’. I stay modest, build others up, work hard and don’t expect too much. Yet that is only a part of who I am. The full version of me is unfolding and I am realising the power of this young girl’s vow to stay invisible. Now I have the tools and power and desire to change it.

Still a work in progress!



For the past few weeks I have been ill, really awfully sick. Not life threatening though, but still ghastly sick. Now I know there are sadly, plenty people in a worse-off situation that I found myself in for a temporary basis but for a good chunk of that period, it felt terminal to me (maybe it was manflu – haha!)

Now why write about something that happens to (mostly) everyone on the planet? Because the whole month of August just seems so strange and I have to write the strangeness out of me. It helps with my perspective.

This flu slapped me suddenly and violently and it knocked me completely off my feet. There was no flu-ish build up, and no warning signs to give an indication that a loony eclipse was going to darken my planet. I woke up on a Tuesday morning and there it was. In my joints, lungs, head, everywhere.

This is often the initial period of achy flu, so I managed to get through the day very sluggishly although I was coughing like a very seasoned sailor. On day 3 of the achiness I realised that my lungs may be infected so needed to bring in the big guns. Okay, it was a doctor and he had a stethoscope and it was around this time that I realised I had no jokes in my head. Not even one. I think this is what was the most alarming thing of all on reflection because I realised that I had lost my sense of humour, my appetite, my good health and the saddest of all- my inner jukebox.

Of course, being a tapping therapist, I eventually stopped chastising myself for getting into this situation and realised that my body obviously needed to sleep. It also needed to get irritated, frustrated, short tempered and not give a damn about anyone/thing else. This feeling stayed with me as I struggled to hold my head up for any length of time without a cushion and eventually the novelty of lying on the bed wore off. I had many guests in August too, but they had to just work around me.

The weeks ticked by and the shell of me remained. My one dear friend suggested that perhaps my soul needed a rest, and after much thought on that, I agreed. I was like a shell of me and had no joy, nor positivity and somewhere deep down, I hoped that this would not be a permanent state of being.

For a strange reason, I said to myself ‘Friday is the day’ so on Thursday I was floating about thinking that that goal is futile and was getting worried that this may well be me-forever. Ironically the nominated Friday was also 1 September, Spring day in the southern bit, yey! I didn’t know that initially as I think I got stuck somewhere mid July… possibly on a plane… over Ethiopia.. or in the Dubai desert.

Anyway, Friday comes, and I gingerly get out of bed and stop. I listen, I feel, I move. Gone…. the dizziness, floaty feeling is gone. PLUS- the music was back as I started humming tunes (getting ready for the shower- may have been a different kind of hum!)

The ‘good me’ is still here, and I am ready… to rock. Okay, maybe not rock, but I am ready!

Bring it!