You know how your voice sounds one way in your head, and then you hear it on your answer phone or a home video and it doesn’t match up with what you think it sounds like, at all? I had the misfortune to have a visual version of this happen to me recently.
In my head, I still look the way I do when I was 21. I peaked at 21, you see. I was the slimmest I’d ever been, my hair was good, I spent most of my money on clothes, make-up and going out. The trouble is, this does not match up with what I see when I actually look in a mirror. Also, in my head, I am a fantastic dancer. I love to dance and sing and can regularly be found, bopping my way around the house, or doing my best Whitney impression whilst washing up.
In my head, this is what I look like:
Only, the other day, I was dancing to ‘Can’t Touch This’ by MC Hammer on some music channel or another on TV. I was dancing away, thinking “Wow, if our neighbours could see in, I bet they’d be amazed by my dancing”. Then I caught sight of myself in our patio doors.
This is a more accurate depiction of what I looked like:
This isn’t an exercise in self-deprecation, I don’t just mean I looked like a fat girl dancing, I’m saying, my moves were the same and everything! Which begs the question…when did I forget how to dance? And more horrifyingly, could I ever dance? Have I been kidding myself all these years. I say horrifying because I’ve spent a lot of time dancing in public.
Between the ages of 19 and 22, I spent almost every weekend, and some weeknights, in a pub or a club, and there was a lot of dancing involved (Although that makes me sound a bit like a stripper, doesn’t it? I can assure you, I was a fully clothed, paying customer!). And this doesn’t even factor in the fact that I used to go to belly dancing classes and actually perform in the theatre. That’s right, people have PAID to watch me dance. Now I’m wondering if I should find them all and reimburse them for the confusion.
I think the lesson here is, never take for granted that the way you feel in your head is the way you actually look or sound. There may be some level of disparity between the two, and I feel it’s better to know in advance than to find out, years later, when there’s bugger all you can do about it.
Now, off to record myself singing….I may have more refunds to make.