Faking It

The 20s are all about being authentic. The hardest thing about college is knowing when you're actually being you. There are so many metta (that word totally peeves me) moments where you question whether or not you're being true to yourself. When you do or say something out character, is that going against who you are, or is it rather another side of you, which still makes it part of you (I just confused myself with that sentence)? I guess there's no real answer. How do we even know we're actually keeping it real. Even when we're faking it, isn't that just us being us (#mindblown)? There is something to be said about letting the real you shine through. The big question is what happens when you have to keep faking it?

Let me bring you up to speed on last weekend as quickly as I can. So Friday morning kicked off in the aftermath of a night with little sleep with a physics exam that actually wasn't too bad (but me thinking something manageable means absolutely nothing). The 7:30AM start time, however, was brutal as hell. From there I went straight to my Religion in US TV & Film exam period where I turned in my phenomenal (thank you big G for my crafting gifts) tri-fold display analyzing Man of Steel's Christ-Like depiction of Superman and watched many a presentation on others' projects. I was going to go to lunch with JMC (my group name for myself, Connor, and Mac - they don't about it yet and it's subject to change, but I'm #teamwhatever). I did the lunch test and they totally failed. I was in my exam still and was like, you can go to lunch without me, but it's a challenge, you wait for the person even when they tell you that you can go. They went, and sent me snapchats of their Panera. I ended up having lunch alone and watching Awkward. and Faking It and realizing how ridiculous my little test had been. I couldn't even be mad because I told them to go and so they did (that was like level 5 crazy girlfriend ish right there). Later in the evening I gathered my wits about me and went hard in the paint (literally) in prepping for Greek Games, making capes from scratch, brackets, rules, printing out waivers, itineraries and gathering supplies until 4AM (please tell me I don't have a problem). That was my second time faking it that day. I wish I had asked for help. I needed help and was too proud and too afraid to ask for it, and so I sat working my ass off for hours on end. Morning broke, and I hopped up, threw on clothes, and went to get ready for Greek Games. Remember the food I had coordinated for that day all over campus, two of them were happening in that time period. It made me so damn nervous that I couldn't be there to supervise each other. I would be lying if I said I trusted anyone to do it, and to do it to my ideal of how I imagined them to turnout. The part that got me was no one remembering to save me any food, mind you, many a times I had do so for others and the fact that none of it would have happened if I hadn't planned it. I knew that morning that I was going to have to fake it so damn hard.

The worst thing about living such a public life is everyone expecting you to be perfect, or at least that's my perception of how people see me. They expect you to be happy all the freaking time, and to never have anything else going on other than what you're supposed to be doing. Newsflash, that's not how PEOPLE work ... at all. Greek Games from my perspective was a colossal mess, after spending over 16 hours prepping for it, nothing looked how I wanted it to. I had made checklists, drew a diagram, and even had timed how long things would take. It was perfect. We started winging it, and I couldn't even fake pretending to be happy about it. All that work I had done was absolutely worthless and disregarded. The thing that sent me over the edge was being consistently asked when things were going happen and when people would be doing things. With the topper to that being people like "calm down" or "smile, look happy" - that doesn't help me, just aggravates me more. Just because you know me doesn't mean you get special treatment, I'm working and doing the best I can, this is not helping me at all. I was so flustered, nervous, and nearly panicky. Come to find out by the end of it, everyone who had come from the fraternities and sororities had had an amazing time. They had no idea the internal anguish I had been enduring and frankly didn't care because in the grand scheme of things, it didn't really matter. It was a great event and people were happy. We, as in IFC and Panhel exec, cleaned up and moved the supplies back to the RHA office where I was greeted by the new kids on the block in the form of the incoming RHA execs. I wasn't having any of it and didn't give anyone the time of day. I couldn't fake it anymore to validate others because no one was validating mine. People have a habit of telling me the details of their lives and their work like I'm supposed to be impressed or to congratulate them, and it's not endearing at all. Who are you justifying your worth to? Only you can do that for yourself and I think it diminishes the value of your work (says the guy who wrote about his frustration with a similar thing earlier - captive audience). On another level it comes off as people thinking their lives and what they do is more important than anyone else's, and I'm like hell to the no, take several seats. I went to sit in my room for a couple of hours trying to find being calm again. I was shaking, I was frustrated and I was truly angry. I had to go pickup the pizza order for the food day continuation and serving other people brought me instantaneous gratification and happiness. People were so thankful and excited. I had great help from Tori, Laura, Keith, and Jaime which made it all the more properly executed. I didn't have to fake it anymore, I was genuinely happy again.

Last but not least was the Ben & Jerry's ice cream. I made my way to north campus and helped setup while my castmate Hailey and long lost fraternity brother, Bobby, setup their deluxe Sundae station. Sam and Connor came to retrieve ice cream for their miniature sundae making in another building and Lauren joined me to hang out. People however just were taking their ice cream and leaving, like this doesn't just magically just happen, someone had to put effort in. I sat with Willy and talked, always enjoy my time with that guy, such a character, and we wished people good luck on their finals. I spent some time with Mac before he got swept up in the group atmosphere of it all. Clumps of people came and went and I made my way over to the other ice cream hall after cleaning up. I was doing pretty good but definitely was slightly irked after a double request for more ice cream that complicated my initial plan. Midnight rolled around and ice cream and that long ass chaotic day was finished, so JMC hung out in Connor's room talking about anything and everything. Somehow we go on me as a subject which I was totally not about. I'd rather hear about other people's lives, I know about my own already (says the guy who keeps an overly detailed blog). Three hours later, laughs, awkward moments and all it was time to head home. Being with the people I arguably have spent the most time with all semester was the highlight of that week. No matter how much the little things frustrate me, I can't fake how comfortable and welcome I feel with those two. Sunday meant my fraternity's end of the year BBQ which was me taking pictures, talking to old school alumni and saying goodbye to some of our departing brothers. It was a good time. Jake has definitely come into his own as a leader in our chapter and has a knack for being effective and productive in his speeches which I appreciate greatly. I knocked out some work in the afternoon and went for ice cream with IFC & Panhel exec. We NEVER get to hang out as a group and it was cool just to sit and talk with all of them. Who would known they were so funny and that we gelled so well together. Particularly, Maddie, Audrey, Sam, Fiona, and RenĂ©e had me laughing until I teared up. It was so refreshing, no pretending necessary.

*So what did I learn that weekend about faking it? Most of the time it's not necessary and it's probably a really good thing I'm done with RHA because I was doing more harm than good at this point. especially with how I feel about people. Also, People want you to be yourself and to not change for them. It is worth noting how you're attitude and emotions affect group situations, but showing up as the person in the mirror is all anyone can ask of you. You do your best and you go with it. You smile because you mean it. You laugh because something's funny. You cry because you feel. You do it all because that's what seems right for you at the time. Forget faking it, keeping it real goes a lot further.

My blog post question for the day is ... when was the last time you were faking it? I mean there are so many times when you don't want to hurt people's feelings, or it's just easier to go along with someone or something instead of raising an unnecessary about it, so you just keep faking it.


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