I’m a high functioning faker.
It’s an art, really, which I’ve come to master over the last 37 and a half years.
I’m supposed to be The Real Deal of Parenting, so how disappointing is that?
People don’t like fake. We’re preaching less fake, more real.
Fake is phony.
Fake is a fraud.
Fake is not real.
I’m here to tell you, it can be a very real reality to many “high functioning fakers” like myself.
Besides, it’s part of a coping mechanism that keeps people like me afloat.
I remember noticing how “good” I was at this from a young age. I could have had something quite disastrous happen as a kid and yet the next morning, off to school I went and I told myself that I was just fine. Nothing to see here. I was good. I was strong. I wasn’t struggling. I wasn’t hurting. I wasn’t scared.
I was faking my way through my day as my coping mechanism. Yes, this started at a relatively young age, and I never even realized I was doing it because you see, this was also a means of survival mode for me.
This “faking” I also look at as being able to handle certain situations with grace and class. One of my grandmothers use to share with me that no one would ever see her or more grandfather argue – it was a private matter. They could have been in a deep, heated argument and if company would happen to drop in at the door, smiles turned on, laughing and friendliness in check … all was well.
I used to do this while I was a teacher. I could have been crumbling inside, missing my very young children and babies at home, and there I was – trying to turn it up and turn it on for my students who needed me. Yes, oh so many days I had to fake it during my teaching career for their sakes.
And speaking of careers, I grew to the top of two sales companies in back to back years … how? Fake it til you make it, right? “If you build it, they will come” mentality. People would compliment me and say that “Regan could sell ice to an Eskimo”. It was a lot of turning it up and turning it on and faking it until I could bring things to fruition.
Even recently, I had to co-host a big radio show and was stricken with a massive migraine; to say it was debilitating is an understatement. But I knew I had no choice but to power through; it’s almost a ‘switching’ of brain gears from 1st to 3rd gear knowing you’ve got to push forward.
Yes, I’ve even faked it through some sickness.
I’m likewise a high functioning introvert. Despite being a social media personality and what I’d consider myself to be a naturally friendly person, let me tell you how many times I’ve had to hop online, do a show, appear publicly and be smiling and cordial and chatty and holding it together.
So many at this point are thinking, “Soooo… we’re all dealing with a fake, disingenuous Regan? Fantastic.”
No, that’s not what I’m trying to say. I do consider myself to be real. But I am also a high functioning faker that 8.5/9 times out of 10, you wouldn’t be able to tell if I was hurting or frustrated or dealing with this something when you were around me for a shorter period of time.
Don’t we all do this, to some degree?
A lot of times I’ll only share “after the fact” of something.
Some days it’s a coping mechanism for us all. Hell, some days I try to trick my own brain into saying everything is good, everything is great, everything is wonderful even when it may not be.
For our children, how many days do we try to suck it up and put on the brave face to be the parent that they deserve? It’s as if our bodies are going into fight or flight mode, knowing they have a job to do to protect us … to protect them … to protect someone.
So if we’ve yet to meet: Hi, I’m Regan I’m a high functioning faker.
I’m one of the realest, most vulnerable, genuine, truly caring people you could meet. I have a big ole contagious, super unique laugh, I love to see other people win, I have a good heart, and I always root for God’s underdogs.
But yes, more times than not, I’m in survival mode, I’m “life-ing” it, I’m coping, I’m managing the best I can, I’m faking it and holding tight to the fact that His grace is sufficient.
For anyone else who has felt “this” recently, don’t worry, it’s just a bunch of us white knuckling it together; remembering His power is made perfect in our weakness.