Barbie World + [deep thoughts]

I'm A...

I like Dr. Pepper, a lot.

But when I saw their new commercial the other day, my love for them grew just a little bit more.

It really has nothing to do with pop (although their 23 flavors are delicious). This might be a stretch, but for me, it's about sharing who you are without fear or apology. It's about being honest and owning your personality, warts and all. I find that really inspiring, and it's something I'm striving to do from now on.

So this post has three parts... why I find the message so meaningful that I'm writing a blog post about a pop commercial, what I intend to do about it, and what kind of person I think I actually am.

First comes fear...

When I published my Catholic Carrie post, a friend pointed out that I shouldn't feel the need to tread with so much caution when sharing my opinions. Respect for others, yes... but apology for what I think, no. She's absolutely correct, and it got me thinking.

I think it's fair to say that I tend to be a fearful person. Not all the time, but certainly now and then. I worry about how others are feeling and what they think of me constantly, and even admitting that is scary, because wow -- talk about navel-gazing (which might be said of this post, or even this whole blog).

When I consider important life decisions, I don't just think about what would be best for me and/or Kyle -- I wonder what our families (read: moms and grandmas) will think, and how our friends will react.

It's incredibly stupid, really. And I'm vowing to stop.

Then (ideally) comes courage...

Let's be clear here -- I'm not a shrinking violet. There are situations where I'm fearful, but I can be quite feisty as well. I'm not out to become Mrs. Rachel Lynde ("I'm known throughout these parts as a woman who speaks her mind") just rampaging around with my opinions and blunt honesty, feelings and social etiquette be damned. I actually don't think I'd be capable of that.

But I am aiming to let a little more of my chutzpah shine through, rather than keeping it all bottled up inside except for those closest to me, who often receive a a heaping dose. I appreciate genuine people immeasurably, yet I'm not always entirely genuine in return. I'm afraid to hurt feelings and disappoint people, but as Raymond Hull said, " He who trims himself to suit everyone will soon whittle himself away."

Kyle has many wonderful qualities, but one that I admire most -- even when it drives me up a wall -- is his unfailing honesty. It was a huge part of his best man's speech at the wedding, the fact that Kyle says what he means and means what he says (so, when he said he would love me for better or worse, he really meant it --- awwwww). Of course, this abhorrence for the saving grace of our society, the white lie, occasionally puts him into confrontation with friends and coworkers (and even, once in awhile, spouse... what do you mean you don't like the hummus I made as much this time?!)

But for better or worse, he always speaks his truth. Respectfully and even cautiously sometimes, but unfailingly. And his relationships and work (and hummus) are better for it.

One of my all-time favorite quotes is "Speaking your truth, even if your voice shakes." In this awesome Huffington Post article, Susan Sarandon tells me it comes from a bumper sticker. I feel like I should find one and stick it on my forehead. I'm going to have to start small, and my voice will be shaking, but I'm going to do it.

Then comes the fact that you dream with flourish...

Okay, that's a stretch as a rhyme with "courage" (see what I did there?) but if I had to classify myself in one phrase, it would be "I'm a dreamer."

I get an insane amount of happiness from planning/researching/dreaming about things.

Although we probably won't be moving for a few years, I look at houses for sale almost daily and dream for hours about our next place.

Although we probably won't take three vacations this year, don't think I haven't plotted out ideas for a trip to Naples in March for Kyle's birthday, to Aruba for our first anniversary, and to Hilton Head for the end of the summer.

Although we probably won't get another dog for awhile (or a cat, ever), don't think I'm not always looking at animal shelter and breeders' websites, dreaming about another Golden, or a Collie, or an Irish Wolfhound, or a mutt (or a cat, which Kyle hates).

I start getting excited for spring right about now, and it's the same way with summer, fall, and winter -- once the current season is halfway through (that might be wishful thinking for this winter), I am so ready for the next one.

The day after Kyle proposed to me, I logged on to TheKnot.com -- and wouldn't you know, I already has us registered in there, with a wedding date picked out (which ended up being only two weeks off, in fact). Can you say crazypants? Considering I didn't even remember registering, I must have done it very early on in our dating days.

I have a lot of dreams. My struggle is to become a doer as well.

And to be honest.

So basically, it sounds like I'm a lazy, occasionally insincere person. Talk about warts!