When I’ve been hospitalized, which is more than a couple in a the past decade, I have been asked to list my positive traits. I have a pre-canned list of things now. I say that I am smart, funny, kind and Loyal

I absolutely detest having to come up with that list. Hence it being pre-canned. First of all, when I am in the hospital, I feel like dirt and I’m not exactly the best cheerleader for myself. This is why they want the list. 

Second, I am a little of those things, but I don’t know how much I believe I am totally those things, so I always feel like a bit of a fraud writing them down. 

I mean, I am smart in a way, but everyone is smart about something. Some people have gifts and talents in areas that I could only dream about. I can’t rebuild an engine or make crafts come out the way I want them too most of the time. There is brilliance in that. 

I only think that I am funny sometimes. I have friends who are hilarious. No competition. Really.

Kindness is subjective and I like to think that I have this quality, but I’m not a saint by any stretch. I strive for it.

Loyalty is harder yet to quantify. Am I loyal? I mean, absolutely to the people and institutions that I feel like deserve it. Those can change over time though so am I 100% loyal, or just kind of a fairweather fan? It’s hard to say. I fiercely protect my friends and family when they deserve it (and sometimes when they don’t). It’s a hard one.

I don’t dislike myself, it’s just that coming up with a list of things that are magical about myself always seems awkward. I know it’s partly a cultural thing, where we aren’t supposed to brag about ourselves, but it’s also a very personal thing. I just don’t often feel like that much of a rockstar. Even if I am manic, unless the train is fully off of the tracks, I’m acutely aware of the fact that I may be annoying people, so the last thing I want to do is create a list of how awesome I think I am in that moment. Obviously when I’m depressed, no awesomeness is to be found. 

It’s definitely a struggle to create a list like this and so it’s why I have the pre-canned list of four. 

Anyone else have this experience?

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