Photographs and Memories

Thank you, Naturalhigh, for another great post, “Life As It Ought To Be” ! You really got me to dig deeper inside myself to where I really don’t want to go… not that I’ve not been there before. Even though I’d rather forget, it’s always better to know where you’ve come from.

Becoming a parent has brought a lot of things to the forefront of my brain for consideration. Lot’s of childhood memories came, unbidden, flooding back. I made the decision a long time ago that if I was to become a parent, I did not want to be like my parents. Does this sound too harsh? Maybe, but I should say that even though I had a mostly miserable childhood, some of it was not my parents’ fault; and there are some happy memories of us having fun as a family. While I do realize they did the best that they could, and they always had my best interest at heart, having that knowledge did not stop the pain. It took time.

I remember my mother rummaging through a bag of hand-me-downs, searching for clothes that might fit me. That young child of 5 years old, or so, did not notice anything other than the annoyance of her mother’s voice as she voiced, “You’re too big for this”, “you won’t fit into this”, or “this won’t fit you.” That child wanted to shrink into the smallest ball possible; she heard an underlying message of “you’re fat”–abnormal. She did not know that she was a young child still growing and, indeed, growing out of her clothes—a normal thing. I can truly understand how random remarks can really damage a young mind. I remember that all my life I had the self image of being “fat”. Then on day, as an adult, I came across a picture that I remember taking around that same age. It was of two young, very normal sized girls, my sister and I, sitting on the back steps with gigantic pine cones on our laps. I remember taking that picture, and what I remember is dreading to pose for that picture and trying to hide BEHIND the pine cone. Now where on earth could I have gotten that idea? FYI, later I did, in fact, acquire a life long supply of fatty deposits…. and demons.

Without getting into all the details, the above is the gist of what I want to avoid with my kid. I also have become a big fan of CLEAR communication. I mean, if I don’t get it, or if I think that YOU don’t get it, I will go back and ask you if you understand, or ask questions myself. I will not let it go… though sometimes I think the Drake has it; but somewhere along the line, he still loses it. HA! Could not resist that one! Seriously, I can remember my mom having a hard time talking to us, as evidence the birds and the bees talk. When I got my period, at 9 years old and my sister 8 yrs., she took the both of us aside and very awkwardly gave us some of the details of reproduction. Oh yes, my mother was seemingly a very stoic, unapproachable person. Sad because, in reality she was a very emotional and deeply affected human being.

I acknowledge that this might sound very unfair and really not so bad. I can only say is that there is a lot more factors to add to this brew to make me one totally messed up kid. God was on my side, however; he kept me out of serious trouble. He held me and protected me until I could really take care of myself. For that I am eternally grateful. No matter how much pain I endured growing up, I am now grateful for it, for my life as it unfolded. I can hold my head up high and say, unequivocally, that I know pain. I also know that pain makes you strong.

I’ve always said that I learned my lessons in reverse. I learned everything that I “don’t” want, as opposed to seeing something that I like, and then go for it. I learned that with my parents and I learned that with my first husband. My Drake is the only person in my life who showed me what I actually like…. so I went for it!

Getting a bit daffy now, need to get some sleep…. But first, off to check the stats!


About dragonmommie

I am a wife and mother of an amazing eight year old boy. When school starts, I don the hat of “advocate”. This is very new to me and so, like everything else in my life right now, a necessary transition. I can see already that I will be honing my communication skills as well as sharpening my assertiveness. I am married to an amazing man, who, spoils me to no end. Not in a material way... NO I'm wrong. When he can, he does spoil me materially as he is well acquainted with my infatuation and love all electronic gadgets. I am a self professed EGG, “Electronic Gadget Groupie.” The most important way he spoils me is with taking over attending to our son's needs. My eye has always been caught by sparkly things, the beautiful, and the unique.

Posted on Wednesday, October 25, 2006 ~, in motherhood, Spirituality & Religion, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Being intentional about communication will make you a better parent.

    On another note, you and your sister matured very early. That must have very disconcerting to your mother.

    Isn’t it weird the things we remember and then all the other stuff that just didn’t stick in our heads?

  2. Yes, VERY weird! My sister was not actually matured yet, I was.

    My mom always went through great pains to treat us equal. That, and the possibility that she just wanted to go through the hassle of telling the story one time, led her to tell us together. That was another thing she did that neither my sister, nor I, appreciated. Whatever they did for one, they did for the other… but very “the same”. One the one hand, we got treated equally; yet we, two very different kids, got lumped together in the same pot. My parent’s thinking was that they wanted to avoid giving more to one and less to another. The problem with that is that it was so very obvious to the both of us….. We learn.

  3. This is a powerful memory to deal with! I remember thinking that I was fat as a kid, too. My daughter, a muscular soccer player, used to want a pencil legs body, too. Only lately, at 13, is she beginning to appreciate her soft curviness.

    I was at a meeting last Thursday and a man spoke about “living fully inside yourself.” That struck me deeply. If you can’t accept your body you really miss out on “living life fully”….(my blog name, for those who don’t know)

  4. My neice is on the small side, now a petite young woman, with big boobies that I am sure she is happy that she has; AND that her little body is accentuating! I remember her fretting over her body, too. Funny, I haven’t heard it for a couple of years now!

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