Be Yourself-Everyone Else Is Taken

Do you like your name?

I’m not wild about mine. Didn’t like it at all when I was a kid. I’ve grown into it a bit. I do like that Barbara has lots of nicknames, and I’ve always admired Beaver’s mother, Barbara Billingsly. I think June Cleaver has lots more chutzpa then the world gives her credit for.

Barbara Billingsley

Sometimes, when I sign my name during a credit card transaction, I say to myself. “Slow down. Write your name with happiness and confidence. Be pleased and grateful for who you are.” So I write slowly:

Except that it doesn’t look as nice as that font because my handwriting isn’t great. In fact, I’m not happy with my handwriting.

Or my singing voice.

Or my dinner entrees (I’m better on side dishes).

Or my fingernails.

This takes us to the topic of self-esteem. They say menopause brings confidence once you get through the thick of it. I do find as I get older, my self-esteem is improving. And I’ve learned it’s okay to have lots of shortfalls.

Someone once asked my dad what his talents were. He answered, “I’m really good at edging flower gardens.”

I like that!

I can make a teddy bear talk like he’s the most fascinating bear in the world, and I know the names of all the state capitols.

Maybe that’s enough.

I snapped this photo in a funky coffee shop in Kentucky:



And check out this article on the Positivity Blog:  Tips on self-esteem.  

What about you? Are you happier with yourself than you were twenty years ago?

And do you like your name?

Top Photo:  I saw this sign in a Cinque Terre village on our trip to Italy. No clue what type of business it is.

Bottom Photo: I found this name bracelet among the treasures I saved when my daughter Laura was born. I wonder if hospitals nowadays give mothers such pretty bracelets.

13 thoughts on “Be Yourself-Everyone Else Is Taken”

  1. I’ve always liked my name – even though there were 15 girls in my high school class named Ann – popular name for those born in 1945! I feel lucky to have always been a very confident person – but as I have gotten older, there is a certain extra freedom to be just who I am and not care at all what others think about what I do or say or how I look.


  2. You’re right! Jun Cleaver was probably much smarter than T.V. Moms were expected to be.
    Hven’t seen any new mom get a beaded bracelet. You are lucky if you get a plastic I.D. Band. I never objected to “Being Barbara”. Funny though, A cousin of mine changed her name to Barbara, because she hated being “Beulah”


  3. Hi Barbara!

    So glad to reconnect. I absolutely love your art of animals and their sweet personalities from an earlier post, I guess. I am just trying to catch up. You aren’t “channeling” your Mom, you are You!! And, your work is distinctly different and incredibly wonderful and delightful. We learn from our parents, but we become — who we are supposed to become. So, let’s celebrate “Barbara!”

    I liked June Cleaver, too. By the way, I didn’t get a beaded bracelet as a new mom, either, but I do remember it was a plastic one with the incredible inscription of both my and our daughter’s name. Or, something like that. We actually got to have our daughter in the hospital room with us after she was born for a really long time (given hospital standards).

    Looking forward to all of your new adventures, Barbara!



    1. Oh gosh Phyllis. You’re so sweet and fun to get back in touch! And… you hit me at the right time about my art. I got brave and applied for a juried art show in our town and was….rejected this week. So your comment came at exactly the right time to spur me on. Hope all is well with you! Thanks for your other cool thoughts too!


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