The Sponge, The Abstract Painting, The IDs
A certain memory struck me this morning with no apparent trigger. It was a memory of my first year in college during our Psych 101. Prof told us to bring an item that would symbolize (me) us. We would then be presenting our chosen symbol and explain to the class why.
The assignment wasn’t anything new. I remember our English Lit. teacher in high school asking us of the same homework. I vaguely recall drawing a sponge (yes, had to draw it) and write a short caption of our drawing. I think I said something about me absorbing and absorbing emotions then with an ounce of pressure, eventually pours out my thoughts and feelings however messed up they may be.
Nah… I didn’t really write that down. Not all of it though. Only the absorbing part. But in retrospect, that described one part of me. Or rather, the part of me that I was focusing on.
During presentation, I saw my classmate describe herself as an abstract painting. I was thinking, ” wait, I can relate to that to.” But I would be scoffed if I imitated that. I’ll just use it next time. So I ended up with my sponge then later on wrote a poem about abstract paintings. Which you can read here. An abstract painting seen by many but not truly understood.
Fast Forward to my college presentation.
There I was in front of my classmates – a good 20+ group of people – and I raised up my collection of IDs which was quite in during high school (having a lot of IDs meant you were part of a lot of clubs/orgs/events). I don’t remember what I said exactly but it was along the lines of “my ID represents my identification, my being. For I may have a lot of IDs that show a different part of me with various audiences, I am still who I am searching for where I truly belong.” Or something like that. I wish it was somewhat profound for a college freshmen.
Moving on. At the end of all presentations, Prof said something that I will always remember the message. The lesson was something like this:
Human beings are amazing creatures. We are able to associate ourselves to things or items to epitomize our personality, our being. There is NO one symbolism that would best describe us. We are dynamic. How we view our own selves is so broad and varied that one single solitary object may not suffice. How we see ourselves is more important. To be able to see ourselves – our strengths and our weaknesses, our vanity and humility, our inner turmoils and outer successes – that’s what makes us humans unique.
[If any of my former classmates are reading this. Correct me if I’m wrong in reading our teacher’s message!]
As I end this post, I’ll share. At times, I have associated myself before (and even at present) as a sponge, an abstract painting, and a bunch of IDs – objects that I seem to stitch with my being in a SAD tone. But being a unique individual who I’d like to think whose thoughts have matured a bit, I have a more positive description. Here goes my analogy:
The Sponge = My resiliency. Still able to absorb and keep on absorbing; always carrying on and learning to let go.
The Abstract Painting = My hidden abilities. Always underestimated (which I truly love about myself) but always having a surprise in stock.
The IDs = My identity (or who I project to be). The journey in life is still far from over. My views may change and the road may not show me yet to where I’ll be, but I know where I belong – with ME.