I grew up thinking I was smart. At school, we were constantly told we were in the top 20% of the country. We were smart. My parents told me I was clever. I got a first at uni. I got promotions and pay rises ahead of my colleagues. I was told all the time that I was smart.
But the older I get, the more I realise academic smarts has no real relevance to how smart I really am. When I blog, I just write. I sometimes plan in my head but usually I just write. That’s how I am in life. Words come out quicker than they often should. Moments later my brain will catch up and I cringe at my insensitivity, gullibility, lack of understanding, poorly timed and executed humour, crudeness, mistaken ideas … the list goes on. But no matter how hard I try to gain and contain my words, they flow out freely. I am one of those people who has said ‘well at least you know you can get pregnant’. One of those people who I avoided when I first miscarried. Thankfully I can go back and edit my blog before I hit publish. I’m more considered here.
In life, I am the person with their foot in their mouth. Face palm. #awkward. That is me.
And so if I have offended you or said something remarkably off the mark – I’m sorry. Really, I’m sorry.
But I do have a redeeming feature. I love learning so if my understanding needs correcting or extending I’m always up for debate. I’m always willing to put my hands up when I get it wrong. I willingly say sorry when it’s due.
There are topics I avoid on this blog because they are sensitive and I don’t want to get it wrong given my astounding ability to say the wrong thing. I am trying to become wiser, softer, more understanding. Amazing as an adult I feel less and less knowledgeable. Less smart. Less self assured. But it’s not a bad thing. The arrogance of my twenties has made way for empathy and forgiveness.
That doesn’t mean I’m not smart. It doesn’t mean I’m a pushover. Weak. Wrong.
I just know that I don’t know everything and I finally know the importance of picking my battles. It is my choice when I speak up – don’t take my silence as weakness. It’s strength. And (a small tiny amount of) wisdom. I used to think I was so smart. Now I’m happy to say I still have a lot to learn.