on a mission to embody grace and compassion in all relationships

Wanting To Be Someone Else

When I was growing up in Alabama, my first love was football and I played the game from the first grade (1960) through college (1976).  I always wanted to be like one of my favorite players.

I went to every home football game at Lanier High School in Montgomery when my next door neighbor, Jimmy Lowder, was an All-American running back.  I wanted to be Jimmy Lowder.

I memorized the jersey number and hometown of every player on the University of Alabama roster during the 60’s.  I even spray-painted my football shoes white in the 70’s in high school so that I could look like Joe Namath who went on to play for the Jets.

I wanted to throw a football like Heisman trophy winner Pat Sullivan at Auburn University or catch the ball over my shoulder like Terry Beasley.

I thought Bart Starr (born in Montgomery, played at Lanier and at The University of Alabama) was the greatest player ever when he led the Green Bay Packers to several NFL Championships.  I wanted to be Bart Starr.  I wasn’t alone.  A good friend of mine, Drexel Rayford, even wrote a song about wanting to be Bart Starr (you can hear a clip here or buy the song on iTunes by searching for Bart Starr).

The bottom line is I always wanted to be someone else.  Who did you want to be when you were growing up?

Now that I’m 55, I know better most of the time.

Today, I just want to be Malcolm Marler.  I want to be who God created me to be.  Truth be told, that is all I can be.

Be the child of God you are, and offer your unique gifts to the world through your personality.

We need YOU to be you.

And when you are who you are, that is more than enough.


  1. Eleanor

    I never wanted to be someone else. I always wanted to be the girl that everyone noticed and everyone wanted to talk to. (maybe that is someone else) I so wanted to be the girl who had invitations from all the frat boys for their events. Truthfully most invitations I received were blind dates (fix ups). I wasn’t a partier so usually there was just one fix-up. I tried so hard but I just didn’t fit in. But, I kept trying. I so wanted to be someone important. I met a young farmer type man a few months before my graduation and by that time I just wanted to graduate from Clemson and get a teaching job in my small South Carolina home town. As it turned out, I married that young man exactly 13 months after I met him. This March 3 will be 32 years. My life has been so blessed. God new far better that I what I needed in my life to feel “important.” I have found my importance in being a wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt and teacher to hundreds of children. I have found contentment in my “importance.”

  2. Malcolm


    Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with me. Your story of meeting and marrying your now husband 32 years ago is such a wonderful story to tell indeed.

    Your discovery of being a wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, and teacher to hundreds of children has more impact on this world than you will every know. Thank you for being you.


  3. Janet Griffin

    I have always like the saying, “Be yourself, everyone else is taken”. A great goal but hard to live by at times. Thank you for your insight and reflections, Malcolm. And thank you Eleanor for giving us a glimpse into your journey of faith and gratitude.

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