Saturday, June 04, 2005

"How did I get here?"

Do you every look around and ask yourself how you’ve arrived at where you are in your life?

How did I get to be in this apartment full of books? How did I get to the job I have? How did I come to be living alone at this stage in my life? How did I become a reader? A writer? A nurse? A Democrat? How did I become the woman, the person, I am?

Part of me came from the family into which I was born. Some people believe that before birth you “chose” your family because in your “new” life you have unfinished lessons to learn. Therefore I must have “chosen” to be born into a family of a strong, conservative, prejudiced father and a quiet mother – both drinkers.

Teenage rebellion must have lead me to first disagree with my father, whom I remember admiring when I was a child. Suddenly I didn’t feel his ideas were right – they just didn’t “feel” right to me. People of a different skin color were not inferior to me just because of that color. It was my choice to openly argue with him. Those arguments were never calm – but they did teach me strength of convictions. That strength and those convictions continue.

Actually I was quite shy. As an overweight child and teenager, I never felt as if I was ever ‘good enough” – I always had to try harder. I soon learned that part of that was to act like the type of person I wanted to be. I “acted” more confident and outgoing than I was – than I felt. Eventually, using humor and my intelligence, I overcame – somewhat – the social stigma of my excess weight. But only somewhat – it would take years to make it more than just “somewhat” and it continues to be an ongoing struggle.

And the weight – well, that is also a part of who I am. Being overweight may have made me more accessible to others, less intimidating.

To be continued


Blogger Kathy Holmes said...

Fascinating topic, Mitzi. I can't wait to read more.

9:09 AM  

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