|By Angeline M Duran Santiago|
This Friday ended a four part interview process that took place in the space of a few weeks. I looked forward to its finality and had confidence in my ability to present myself professionally. I was confident in my background and experience, believing I would be able to answer any question relating to the educational field, and why I was qualified and ready to be promoted.
I write today, not to share my victories, but to share the things that were loud in my mind as I rode the bus when I left. I want to share the moments that were crucial and that most likely I failed to answer correctly so that you may be ready for your moment. You see, I was ready with all the technical stuff, but I was not ready to let someone peer into my soul, into my heart, into my weaknesses and yes, even my strengths. My interior was exposed and all of a sudden my ready brain was like, "Ummmm" in Silent Mode.
When I was asked, "What are your gifts that you would bring to this company?" I confess I froze from my lips to my toes. I forgot everything I knew and suddenly I had no answers. Me. I was being asked to talk about what makes me special, what makes me amazing, and what were my gifts.
How would I answer without coming off conceited, a show off, or a know it all? I knew in my heart what God has called me to do and be, but how could I speak that without turning the Interviewer off?
In my past, I learned to be silent, to keep my hand down, to stand to the side and watch.
My desire to help, turned into waiting to be told what to do with pain in my heart because I wanted, I hungered and longed to do so much more. I could walk into a room and immediately perceive and visualize what was wrong and needed to be corrected or changed, from people, to spaces, to everything in that was right and wrong. Inside me, the voice, the call to do greater challenged me to walk forward but too many times those who were supposed to encourage me, instead suppressed me and for a long time, I learned to walk the line respectfully and quietly.
I decided to break free and just do my thing. I believed God would open the door one day. And it feels great to finally be going somewhere where I can be myself, where I am expected to be me, without the fear of being seen as a threat or a showoff. I am finally moving into a position where my ideas, my counsel and my training matters. So, when the questions to share about the me, deep inside where placed, I closed up. It has been a long time since anyone questioned my heart.
If you know me, you know I love to be involved in the performing arts as well as the arts in general, from drawing to creating just about anything that comes into my mind. If you really know me, you know I love to help, to create the needed changes to bring about growth and success. But, my gifts? How do I reply to that? How would you?
Yet, I knew, I've always known.
Guidance and Administration.
The list goes on.....
If you were asked those things today, are you ready to respond? All night I thought of the responses I should've given.
Did I answer correctly?
I think I know what my gifts and talents are. Lord, help me use all that is inside of me to be a blessing to those people in my life, starting with my family, and beyond. Let my life be a blessing that pours into the lives of others. Lord, let me be a help to those I work with.
Lord, show me as I go on in this life's journey. And, I also pray the Lord will show you what are the great things in your life as well so that when your interview, your moment to share comes up, you are not stuck like I was, but can freely, and without fear, expose your heart and speak it out loud.