“She needs my help, you don’t…” Imagine overhearing people discuss how they think you are incapable of figuring out what line to stand in; oh and now apparently they also assume I was hard of hearing. Why? What makes them think I cannot take care of myself?
I grew up hearing how intelligent my siblings and I are because we are highly gifted, but something must have changed, or maybe they made a mistake? Oh I know, I must have become stupid, right? Based off of a few encounters, some people – who do not know me so well – genuinely believe that to be true.
Having a high IQ was an attribute I was always privately proud of but overtime became a major insecurity of mine. I contemplated getting retested just so I could have the results documented. I hoped a piece of paper with a number on it would make me feel better about my identity. But when someone who just meets me thinks I am stupid, does that make it a fact?
I say, “Oh my G-d, like, all the time”. I guess sounding like a “Valley Girl” does give off the impression of stupidity. I happen to be from Los Angeles, California, which borders the Valley, so it does make sense that I give off that impression. Although I talk like a “Valley Girl,” that does not make me ignorant or dumb and I do not have to be embarrassed when meeting new people because this is who I am. I do sound like a “Valley Girl,” or a “Cali Girl” and that’s where I am from, and I like it! I know that even though I may not come across as a genius, that changes once people allow themselves to get past the superficial nature of the phases I use in colloquial conversation. I should not feel insecure because I am not defined the label they paste on my forehead. I need to remember that when given the chance, I tend to disprove the association given with the title of a “Valley Girl.” Part of who I am is my “Valley Girl” impression and it does not mean that I am dumb. I love who I am and it is a part of me that I should not be embarrassed about, but proud because this is who I am.