When we heard this title, we thought about how catchy it was and how it resonated in our minds. Then, we thought deeper and realized most women in church are all about their hats. For decades, a women’s hat exemplified her character, her strength, her confidence, and her passion; not to mention it made a fashion statement. In fact, it did the talking without her saying a word, and everyone’s hat was different. The hat was an extension of her personality. But, we never thought about all that a hat could cover up in our lives or the security and comfort it could give, until we met Sherri and she gave us a different perspective on the reasons why some women might cover up with their hats.
With that said, we want to introduce Sherri Simmons. She is a mother, wife, Author, an Educator in the Chicago Public School System, and host of an online talk show called “Underneath the Hat Web Series,” where she dives into topics of interest to women. She is also Founder and President of a program called “Young Ladies At All Times (Y.L.A.A.T.), where she mentors young girls. Even though she was very busy, she still found time to write her book, and her article was inspired by it. Without further ado, we introduce our guest, Sherri Simmons.
By: Sherri Simmons (Guest Contributor)
Mother. Daughter. Wife. Sister. Friend. These are just some of the many “hats” we as women wear in our everyday lives. We change our hat depending upon what roles we need to take on, and the obstacles we face. Rarely, are we given the opportunity to share who we are underneath the hat. So, who are we truly? How did we become the women we are today? What values, testimonies, and triumphs are being kept warm underneath it all? Who are you under your hat?
My name is Sherri Simmons, and I just found out who I am underneath my hat. After writing my book 3 years ago, I began to soul search. What I found through prayer, counseling, and sharing my story to those who would listen, I had no idea who I was. I realized that I had been living this fantasy tale of what I thought a woman was, and who I thought I was, but my story was written by someone else. I was a daughter, I was a wife, and I was a sister; but I had not one inkling about who Sherri was. I had been so accustomed to putting on a facade of what a daughter should be, and how a wife should act, and how a teacher should carry herself, but I never took the time to show people who I really was. I soon found out that when given the opportunity, I was uncertain.
So often we play these roles in order to make sure everyone around us is comfortable that we lose ourselves in the process. For example, in my book, Underneath the Hat, Amanda Jayne was the First Lady of her church. The signature uniform for a First Lady is her hat, the bigger the better. She went through some hard times, but no one knew because she hid it underneath her hat. There was a time when she took off the hat and had to learn to like herself with all of her flaws, bruises, and disappointments. This experience revealed to her that the hat was only a part of who she was, and not her total representation. Once she figured out who she was, what set her off, and what made her smile, she began to treat herself with respect, love and admiration; and the things she did for others, she began to do for herself. In doing so, removing the hat made her a stronger women, daughter, sister, and teacher. Being free from the hat, she was now able to share who she really was underneath it all.
You may ask who is Amanda Jayne? Why is she so vital to my book, Underneath the Hat? That’s because she is me. I am Amanda Jayne. You are Amanda Jayne. Women are Amanda Jayne. She represented courage for being able to no longer take the abuse and manipulation from her husband or others. She represented strength for being able to hold her head up and continue to press on during some of the darkest times in her life. She represented honor because she stood true to who she was and carried herself as a young lady. She represented hope that no matter how bad the situation seemed, she was able to overcome, be triumphant, and still stand in the midst of her chaos. Finally, she represented love because she loved herself enough to know that she deserved better, and didn’t have to settle anymore.
Today, I challenge you to search within yourself to show who you truly are underneath your hat. Allow the hurt and pain to come up and out of you, so you can tackle it; then you too, can learn from those things that didn’t kill you. In fact, you can use the lessons to make you stronger. I challenge you to love yourself, just like you love others. With that in mind, take yourself out on a date and get to know who you are. I challenge you to fall in love with “YOU,” and to become your BFF (Best Friend Forever). And when you’re ready, share your story with others because you’ll never know how your testimony can be a blessing to someone else.
So, are you up for the challenge? Are you ready to answer the question? Who are you underneath your hat?
Leave your answer in the comment section below, and please Follow our Blog to the right. Also, please remember to share this post. Thanks!
If you would like to contact Sherri, her information is below:
@underneaththehat (Facebook and IG)
Check out her book by clicking the link below:
4 thoughts on “Who Are You Underneath the Hat?”
Under my hat is a woman that everyone thinks has it all together but I don’t. Always having to hide my true feeling and insecurities.
Hello Always hiding,
Thanks for coming forward with your comment. I know it took a lot of courage and we applaud you for finding that strength.
Oftentimes, women are expected to be strong enough to be everything for everybody including our families, friends, boss, significant others, and our children. And we are still expected to thrive, to shine and to not complain as we again, on a daily bases, are asked to be everything to everybody. Yet, in the process, we forget about ourselves. In fact, it’s like no one ever stops to think about you and what they ask of you. Thereby, some women start to shield their feelings in order to hide their true pain and worries. The sad part is that no one ever notices the giver’s (as in you) reservations, hurt and pain. No one ever stops to think about the demand they put on you.
As in this article, a hat is a coverup, and when people are hurting, they attempt to shield how they feel to stay a people pleaser. This response creates a weakened spirit, a broken heart and a diminished self-esteem.
I want you to know that no matter what you may think or how you may feel under the hat, you are strong and worthy; not because of people, but because of God. For starters, remember, you are what you believe you are, so change your thinking from… everyone thinks you have it all together, to it’s not about what people think but what you think. What’s important to know is that your change starts in your mind, then and only then, will change begin to manifest in your life through your actions and beliefs. And another important fact is that you have the power to say “No.” Be sure to use that power for your good. It just might release some of your anxieties.
With all that said… Why stay in self-doubt and insecurity? Why continue to hide?
Take off your hat, take off your self-doubt, release your fears, and cling on to the fact that you are a child of God, and you deserve to be happy and fulfilled. You deserve to live your purpose. So, let go and let God through prayer, lead you to confidence, to happiness, to his purpose and promise for your life. In the end, you can stand tall in knowing that you are strong enough to come from under the hat and be the “you” you were supposed to be, with no limitations and no shame. Therefore, step out on faith and begin to live happier and more satisfied. Begin to witness the new “you” as you blossom into the awesome women you’re meant to be. You deserve it!
Debbie & Rhonda
I am a Daughter, Mom and Hurt Wife! Thank you for your transparency. Thank you for letting other women know how to deal with what’s under their hats!
Hi She Is I,
Happy Monday! Thanks for reading and commenting on our blog, and for letting us know how the article impacted you. It’s people like you that make a difference. Next, we want to say congratulations for having the courage to speak your truth. Healing comes once the truth is revealed.
In your daughterhood and in your motherhood, you are awesome, stand proud.
As far as being a hurt wife, remember that you are stronger than you know. Whatever you are going through, whatever obstacles you are facing, whatever is causing you to be a hurt wife, realize that you can be the author of your story. You life is like blank pages of a book, and you have the power to write how your story develops and ends. It may have started one way, but it’s up to you as to how it finishes. For starters, just know that you are a women worthy of love, care and respect. Secondly, never downgrade yourself or feelings to appease others. Thirdly, your personal happiness matters and should be your first priority. Understand that you can never give happiness to others unless you are first happy yourself. Another point, remember that toxic people can hinder you from living the life God intends for you to live, and life is too short to just settle. In addition, don’t ever let someone else determine your happiness or SADNESS. Additionally, you have the power to start from today to make a difference in your own life. Lastly, we want to say use prayer to build your strength and for answers. It is in the praying, where you will develop confidence, build purpose, get direction and gain clarity. And no matter what, hold on to “YOU” through it all. She Is I, we are praying for you and your relationship, and please stay in touch. We are sending our love, and we want you to know we’re here for you.
Hold your head up!
Debbie & Rhonda
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