Who Am I? And Who Are You? Five Things

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

“Who am I?  Who am I?  I’m SARAAAAAH ZENTNEEEER!

If you’re at all familiar with the musical Les Misérables, then hopefully you read/sang the above in Jean Valjean’s voice in your head, where it maybe didn’t sound as crazy as I realize it probably looks on the screen.  And if you’re not familiar with this magical and moving piece of musical theatre… well, I feel sorry for you.  Truly.  Get on that.  

But I digress.  This post is not about Les Misérables.  It’s about me.

And it’s about you, dear reader.  

Allow me to explain…

I’ve recently been reading Brené Brown’s vulnerability opus, Daring Greatly, in which she exhorts her audience to share their authentic selves with each other, even though this is decidedly uncomfortable, awkward, and scary.  The truth of the matter is that we can’t expect to build a genuine sense of community, belonging, or love — what Brown argues are cornerstones of the human experience — with others if we don’t allow them to see us for who we truly are.  It’s when we take off our masks and show our scars and let ourselves be real with each other that we can see the very things we’re afraid of revealing most about ourselves are, in fact, those shared experiences that most unite us in common humanity.

This is what drew me to blogging in the first place.  That a blog can provide a platform for anyone to stand on his or her truth and share it with the world is pretty awesome.  And the ripple created by one person’s bravery can reach thousands — thousands who, in turn, might then be inspired to share their stories. Honesty blazes through the wilderness of our souls, and, while we might be tempted to think we’ll be left scorched and barren, the opposite is true.  We become empowered.   

I would say I’m already pretty transparent on this blog.  But I’ve noticed a few things:

  1. I’ve written a few times on missing my alma mater, USD, or other aspects of my past — a completely understandable attitude given that this is still my first year in the post-college “real world;” or
  2. I’ve written about where I feel I should be, and insisting that I’m trying really hard not to beat myself up for not yet having arrived there (even though I still sort of am); or
  3. I’ve often struggled with what to write at all, because I feel I can’t think of enough things to say. 

But last night, as I was discussing my blogging aspirations with my sister over Dancing with the Stars and chocolate chip cookies, I diagnosed these problems as stemming from an uncertainty of, or perhaps more accurately, an unwillingness to define, who I am at this moment.  What is the story I need to tell right now?  Part of that might certainly involve grappling with questions about my past and my future (and it does — oh, does it), but I think to most powerfully and authentically impact the lives of others, I need to be honest about who I am at this point in my life.  From there, I can walk beside others and help people answer questions similar to mine.    

So, who am I?     

A devout Catholic, trying to figure out how to apply my faith to my worldview and vice versa, seeking God in every day, and trying to live faithfully, compassionately, and joyfully.

An avid reader.  Seriously.  I love to read, people.  Right now I’m really into exquisitely crafted literary fiction and books on self-improvement that teach you how to be an all-around amazing individual.  In addition to Brené Brown’s Daring Greatly, I also just finished reading The Nest, a tightly written family drama by Cynthia d’Aprix Sweeney.  Highly recommend it, especially if you’re looking for reassurance that your family is somewhat normal, because this one brings the fun to dysfunctional, that’s for sure.  

A Colorado transplant.  I’ve clung to my “new” status all year as an excuse for driving 25 miles an hour on the freeway when it’s snowing, not knowing how to play corn hole, and being unfamiliar with the dozens (hundreds?) of local brews.  But now I see it as a reason to coach those who are also experiencing a transition.  Maybe some of them are living in Colorado (I’d love to feature some local restaurants, tourist attractions, festivals, etc.), but most are probably just wondering… now what?  Let’s walk through this time together, friend.  

A young single woman, navigating the awkward dating waters and hoping to maybe meet a nice guy out there somewhere.  There are some good stories to be found in this process.  I’ll leave it at that.

A job seeker.  Since graduating from college, this is the part of my persona I’ve been most embarrassed by.  I feel like something of a failure for having been hunting for almost a year now and still not having found any full-time, salaried-with-benefits work.  But the pity party stops now.  I know I’m not alone.  And I also know that, even if I don’t have all the answers (which I definitely don’t), I do know enough about the process by now to at least hold your hand and walk alongside you if this is something you’re struggling with, too.  

Now it’s your turn!

I want to hear from you!  Who are you, dear reader?  I want to know who you are and what you need from me, from this blog.  What do you wish I would write about?  What do you need to hear more of?  What do you want advice on?  Basically, where are you at in this life?  From here on out, this blog will probably be a hodgepodge of posts on the above topics, but I want to know that I’m serving you in a way that you need to be served.  Let’s build a community here where we can love and support each other in this crazy little thing called life.  So talk to me!

Use the form at the right to e-mail me a list of the five things that describe you right now, or find me on Instagram at skzentner, where you can photograph your list of five things, tag me, and hashtag it up with #whoiamsarahndipity so I can see all of your beautiful transparency.  We’re in this together, friends.  And I guarantee that however you define yourself currently, you’re pretty rad.  

So much love, and I can’t wait to hear from you!

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