S2 Episode 13:
Uncovering Our Narratives Pt. 4
December 15, 2020
Jessie Gebauer &
Listen to the podcast here:
Before We Dive In
Jessie: If you’re new to the podcast, I recommend going back to episode 10 “Uncovering Our Narratives Pt. 1.” We have an incredible guest with us all month long, and she’s leading us through some deep personal work that has the potential to impact our communities in a very powerful way. As Lexi teaches, Joel and I will be taking the action steps alongside you. We’ll share our thoughts and ideas to help you go through the process with us. Remember true change only happens with action.
Throughout this series, we will be looking at 3 different pillars- race, gender, and identity - and starting to think about how those pillars mold (and have molded) us and our story. In this episode, Lexi dives into identity and how it impacts our narratives.
Identity and Our Narratives
Lexi: That’s correct! Today we’ll be looking at all the other factors that make up your identity. When thinking about our identities, there is so much of a story to be told. I find that our identities are shaped by our experiences but also by how people treat you based on how they perceive you and your experiences.
For example, in school, my home life was not reflected in much of my learning. I grew up with separated parents, a half-brother, and traveling back and forth from houses every weekend. However, no one knew and I was never in a classroom where having separated parents felt safe or normal. It wasn't until I was much older that I had classmates who had similar experiences.
I am also a straight passing member of the LGBTQ community and how I have been treated by different groups of people is highly reflective of how they see me. This treatment has impacted how I identify and the places I feel safe with my “real” for a lack of a better word, identity.
Here are the questions I pose in regards to identity:
When was the first time you remember seeing yourself reflected in school or the media based on your sexual orientation? What was that experience like and how did it impact you?
Was the home you grew up in, the family that you came from, or your religion ever reflected in schools or in the media? Were these positive or negative portrayals? How did this impact you?
Are there experiences that have shaped who you are and how you respond to the world around you?
Did you have teachers, clubs, or friends that allowed you to be your authentic self? Did having those spaces or not having those spaces impact you?
Lexi: Spend some time reflecting on these four questions that I posed today and try to dig deep with how those experiences have shaped how you identify. Start to jot down some notes to begin with reflecting on your identity. As always, be gentle with yourself as you do the work.
Jessie: Thank you again for sharing your incredible story with us. For all those listening, these questions are linked in our show notes. Look for the “Crafting Your Narrative Guide (Identity).” And remember true change only happens with action, so sit down and reflect!
Joel: Jessie, you’re not wrong about action. Keep coming back to this and as Lexi said, be gentle on yourself. Pause the podcast now to start thinking about your own identity.
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