I once had a coaching assignment: come up with 100 adjectives for myself. Even as a Word Nerd, this was a stretch for me. Someone suggested that I ask others – it’s only cheating if I feel that it’s cheating.
Nope, not cheating.
With my list somewhere in the 70s, a friend looked at me and said, “eclectic.” I was done.
Fast forward several years. My brain had me awake at something like 2 in the morning and I was pondering a recent conversation with a photographer friend. We were talking about possible hair and makeup ideas for a shoot we’re planning. What I kept saying was that I wanted to show the extreme me. I don’t think either of us was clear on what I was trying to express.
My middle-of-the-night brain came up with a new word: fierce.
This word did not come up in my adjective homework, I wish it had. Overall, eclectic is a better description of me; however, fierce is up there. At this point, people who sort of know me might be confused. Unless you catch me on a bad day, I’m not overtly violent. Snarky or harsh, not violent. “Fierce” has a connotation of violence. In fact, “violent in force” is definition number two on dictionary.com. (“Menacingly wild, savage, or hostel” is number one.)
On the other hand, go to the thesaurus part of the website and you’ll see “intense,” “powerful,” and “passionate” – all good, and less than lethal adjectives. (You’ll also see “tigerish,” which really appealed to me. Check out my About page if you need that explained.)
Side note: When looking for images of “fierce,” a cat was the first in the lineup and made up several entries.
I am fiercely loyal. And if you mess with me, I will blow up that bridge and walk away with a ferocity that will melt the asphalt.
I fiercely protect who I consider mine. It takes a lot to insult me. Yet, if I perceive a slight to my sister someone is in BIG trouble. (My sister says I’m too sensitive. Too bad.)
You can also observe my ferocity in my activities. I put my all into my workouts and my volunteer work. When there is violence involved with me being fierce, I take the brunt of it. As a sorter/get it done type for the Friends of the Pleasant Hill Library, I frequently end a shift with several more bumps, bruises, or scrapes.
And I’m fierce about clear communication – the only thing I’ve said I’m passionate about.
So, yes, I am fierce. And it is my ferocity that fuels me when my hair is on fire and I’m getting all that shit done for my people. It’s good to be one of my people.
(Yes, I say that swearing in your writing is a sign of a poor vocabulary. And if you can give me a better word with the meaning and punch, I will give you due credit.)
What are you fierce about?
– Lorrie Nicoles