I’m alright, Jock

The fairy dust was sprinkled about liberally. As was the laughter.

Yup, greasepaint, bright lights and the roar of the crowd were much in evidence at The Word Up Wean’s place of learning this week. We watched on in admiration as the brave souls of P6 & 7 wowed us, their adoring audience, with their own inimitable showing of Cinderella and Rockerfella.

The hardened cynic in me soon crumbled in the face of such talent and effort from weans and teaching staff alike. BTW I’m not deliberately trying to sound surprised here, but I was slightly amazed at how good the show actually was.  We laughed, we cried, we clapped and we burst (with pride), nearly always in the right places. Those weans were magic.

But the thing that struck me most, was how calm and confident our offspring were. The tweens weren’t too brassy or cocky, they didn’t seem to be putting on any front to mask the all-too-familiar symptoms of Scottish insecurity.  Nope, there was precious little in the way of over-performance, except on stage.

As someone who’s in the business of helping others to communicate confidently, believe me, I’ve seen a LOT of self-doubting Scots. We seem to be swamped by an in-bred “we’re not worthy” world view. Our levels of confidence are, frankly, catastrophic. There have been times when our collective Caledonian lack of self-security has made me want to weep. And I have shed real live tears when I’ve watched someone’s confidence and enthusiasm ebb away in the face of entrenched negativity and closed mindedness.

I know what you’re thinking. Who the hell does she think she is? What gives her the right to sound off about how shite we are when it comes to the “c” word? Yeah, who exactly am I to try and lord it over the rest of you from my lofty vantage point of rock solid self-confidence? As if. It might sound contradictory, but none of this is meant as a criticism. It’s just the way we are. And I dunno about you, but that’s not really something I want for my wean.

I’ve done my fair share of battling with the inner demons of insecurity, and I’ve had plenty of slumps of self-confidence. But thanks to active encouragement from certain quarters at a young age, that tiny little bit of inner self-belief, coupled with a very active imagination, these days I believe I can fly.  Sometimes I can barely get off the ground, and I rarely do loop-the-loops, but usually, I can cruise. And hey! Believing I can fly disnae mean that I think I’m anything special, and I’m careful not to fly too close to the sun, but most of the time I’m up, up and away.

I daresay there are plenty who would shoot me down for having the temerity to have confidence about myself and what I’ve got to offer, but to them I say – come on up, the air’s fine! And that’s exactly the mantra I try to keep repeating to my boy – I want my wean to believe he can fly too. I don’t necessarily want him to be an insufferable bighead, Top Gun, or member of the Red Arrows, but wouldn’t it be braw if he grew up with secure self-esteem and the ability to soar, confidently and securely?

So I offer up thanks to those backing up self-belief and positive thinking in our wee yins. Way to go, teachers. Respec’.