| Drawing and Writing Copyright Jen Kelly 2010 Disclaimer: My drawing and writing are products of my warped, incomplete and self-centered memory. |
Distortion and inaccuracies are normal.
In addition to all the other things that eluded me: beauty, money, and athletic talent, I didn't want to appear to also lack intelligence. Evidently that particular neurosis started early, that and trying to hide my shortcomings.
It was maddening to know that I was smart and capable, but oddly unable to produce evidence of this when pressed (story of my life!) Most everyone eventually learns to tie a bow, but for some reason the standard teaching practices were not enlightening me, and I was past due. I was going to be teased again when school started. And nothing hurt me more than teasing I couldn't dispute.
Grandma and I sat perched on the vinyl window seat with the summer sun frying our backs as she tied her shoe over and over for me. While watching this, I SAW it for the first time: the loophole, the fingertip, the missing link. And from that moment on, I could replicate the process just fine.
That made me blissfully the same as everyone else my age. Maybe there wasn't anything wrong with me. The relief was so explosive that the memory of that moment is the one foremost in mind about Grandma.
In case you're wondering what this has to do with anything, well, I get the same experience hearing other people's stories. It's a massive relief to see that a dysfunction--that I had thought was wholly my own--is actually common. In other words, I'm the same as everyone else. But instead of matching in basic life skill capabilities, I match in being imperfect.
It’s funny how being screwed up is easier when I'm not the only one. Others' acknowledgment of their own faults makes me feel validated, loved, and okay.
I hope you feel loved when you come and read, because I love to hear myself talk, and I've got more faults to acknowledge than San Francisco could shake a stick at.
What a combo!