I have never been a joiner. Clubs, organizations, cliques, have all been snubbed. I have had my opportunities to join this group or that group. On occasion I have taken them up on the invitation to join in the reindeer fun. But only if it did not require more than paying the dues and hanging out without any real commitments.
Reading an online novel by Utah Savage brought this tendency of mine back into my mind. Her in your face no bull shit prose struck a chord with me. Her novel is a memoir I guess. I have not finished it yet. I have read enough of it though that it made me consider from whence I came and how I got here. Utah's life, as is all of our lives, a totally unique experience. None of our trips are exactly the same. Similar rhythms and experiences do find their way into our mutual histories. What I have drawn from reading her novel thus far is that Utah and I have some things in common.
Her childhood was very transient and unpredictable. As was mine. She experienced feelings of being shunned, shut out, refused the normal affections we all take for granted. As did I. That I sit here many years later and consider this, the memories are decidedly one sided. Should I bring this up with family members, I am sure denial would be their first choice.
But kids are not stupid. What children may lack in the substantive and traditional ideals of what makes an intelligent human, they make up for with their keen sensitivity to what others around them project in the way of vibes. Good and Bad. So believe me when I say I know how out of place I was as a child. How inconvenient my presence was for everyone around me.
This feeling of being on the outside looking in never left me. My efforts to secure real affection turned back so early set the stage for my later years as I built walls between myself and the rest of the World. Instead of dealing with the inevitable rejection of people around me, I always tended to reject them first. A defense mechanism that has probably not served me well, but good or bad, it has helped to make me what I am today.
My initial foray into the world of blogs is a wonderful example. For the first two years I blogged, I had my comments feature turned off. Telling myself it was because I did not care what others thought, so why bother with their input. When in reality, it was just me pre-empting the inevitable rejection I knew was coming.
I have risen above that now. For two years I have invited other bloggers to share with me what is on my mind. And I have attempted to become engaged by visiting their blogs so I can experience what is on their mind. A victory of sorts perhaps. But is it really? Does opening myself up to complete strangers mark any progress? The important barriers, the ones I erected between myself and those close to me are still there. Are not these the important obstructions to deal with? Of course they are.
I do not mean for this post to be taken as just another woah is me I am so miserable everyone hates me post. More of a recognition that Life is what we make of it. Some of it we screw up and some of it we don't. I'm just admitting to some of the screw ups.
Now it will be interesting to see if I actually post this.