I am Me

I just read a blog post from a new friend Tric from Ireland titled “Keep Out”…  http://mythoughtsonapage.com/2013/09/04/keep-out/#like-5053  This post from her set me to thinking about a variety of things that have been on my mind for a while..  I do that once in a while…Deep Thoughts by MrsCharMcD… Okay, her post is about a very serious subject and I read kindred spirit through her lines.  It amazes me and maybe it shouldn’t that someone growing up an ocean away could share my experiences and find such a graceful way of saying “It’s okay, I’m okay, life is okay.”

Part of the reason that this post touched my heart is that she mentioned growing up in a large family and building an island around herself that caused her to feel separated or isolated from them based on the situation she was in.  Recently, within weeks of each other, I had two different sisters tell me basically the same thing. “They didn’t know me.”  These sisters are the closest in age to me, we grew up in the same house, in the same situation, but they said that they didn’t know me.  I found that flabbergasting, I could not understand how they both felt that way.  They didn’t know my likes, my dislikes, or much of anything about me back then.  Now as adults, I can totally see this because we have been separated by years, miles, and life experiences.  But the me they were referring to was the me they saw as a child or teen.

I really thought I was an open book back then.  And I mean that literally, just give me a book and I was happy.  I ate, drank, and slept with books surrounding me.  I had a book open at all times and at least 10 more waiting when that one was finished.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I did other things too.  I participated in sports, played volleyball and basketball and ran track.  I had a weekend job and friends that I hung out with.  But when I was home, l hid out in my room with my books.  Being the second oldest of 6 kids, hiding in my room was sometimes the only way to have quiet.  I used to get in trouble because I would choose hiding out in my room over spending time with the grandparents when they came over.  But I rationalized that, they came over regularly, so I could spend time with them the next time they came over or anytime I wanted I could go to their house.  So what was the big deal.

After reading Tric’s post, and reflecting back on that time and those years, I realize I was creating my own island.  One that protected me from the chaos going on around me.  I didn’t realize until my sisters said that they didn’t know me just how successful I had been.  I built an island between my siblings and myself that I never really let time bridge.  Now as adults, loving my family as much as I do, I am finding it hard to give them access to the bridge that will let them into my adult life.  I wonder if I reach out to them, will they reciprocate and reach out to me.

I just want to say…I am Me…aside from getting older and a little heavier, I really haven’t changed much in 30+ years, I am still surrounded by books…I still hide out in a quiet place when I find the chaos too much…I still protect my heart, but when I give it to someone I give it totally…I still find it hard to trust easily…I still dislike bell peppers (they still make me sick when I eat them)…I still love anything chocolate…I still love my siblings with all my heart…I am just like them, I live, I love, I laugh, I cry.  What am not any longer is angry…I have not made an angry cake since I left home at 18…my kids missed out on that…no cake every week because I was so angry that I needed to beat something up, so I took it out on the dozen eggs that needed beating when making a home made angel food cake.  What I never told you, back then, was that I just liked making cakes, so most of the time I let you think that I was angry or mad at you because I needed an excuse to make another cake.  That was my only way of spoiling you during a time when there wasn’t much to spoil you with…I don’t know and have never asked, but I think Mom let me get away with it because she had no way to spoil you either during that time.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. tric
    Sep 05, 2013 @ 02:53:20

    What a great post. We really are products of our childhood but I think knowing that allows us to change and grow as adults if we so wish. I do hope you reconnect with your family. I did struggle for awhile to get back in but now I feel so close and connected to each one of them.

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    • CharleneMcD
      Sep 05, 2013 @ 08:11:45

      We have begun that healing process. I hope. The physical miles that separate us don’t help. I can’t count the times I wished I could jump in my car and go running to one of my sisters but driving 1000+ miles kinda put a damper on that. Thank you for your comment, it was great to wake up to.

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