Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Hero worship (or, 'The case of the adult child')

I've been reading The Reluctant Mom's Blog a lot. If you haven't been, you should pop on over and have a squizz, she's fab. And ever-so-charmingly unhinged. I'm starting to feel quite groupie-ish towards her.

I do actually try not to blog about things that other people are blogging about at the same time as they're, erm, blogging about them. But, as you can tell by my recent (lack of) posts, that's not really working out for me. As it turns out, there's really not that much in the way of unique experiences to be had (unless you count my recent run-in with a real-life crab in the middle of my lounge in the middle of the night), so all I can offer is a unique point of view. And hell, it might not even be that unique, but it's mine nonetheless.

So, over at The Reluctant Mom's Blog today, she was talking about being an adult child. I don't know exactly what that references in psychologist speak, and to be honest, I don't care to look into it. I gather, from the context, that admitting to being 9 out of 10 things on the list means I should probably be aiming at a spot of therapy sometime real soon... so I'm not going to admit anything. But it makes me feel a whole lot better to know that other people do the things I do. Hypothetically speaking, of course.

If I were admitting anything, I would probably start by saying that I live an extremely self-conscious existence. The degree of self-consciousness and the underestimation of self-worth might even be called socially crippling. I have actually driven into the parking lot at my local grocery store, parked my car and then driven back out and gone home empty-handed because I wasn't quite sure that I could cope with bumping into an acquaintance wearing whatever particular shade of cowardice I had dug out of my wardrobe that morning.

And if you think that's lame, you're just never going to understand that I have bunked work because I couldn't match my shoes to my top or how, on more than one occasion, I bunked school because I was having a bad hair day. These things sound stupid to most people, maybe bordering on vanity, that I could avoid normal situations for such abnormally trivial reasons. It's not vanity. I don't care about clothes. I just don't want to stand out in any way, I don't want to be noticed, and I particularly don't want to be noticed or remembered for making any sort of faux pas.

And that's why I turn down my car radio at red lights (no 3 on the list of things I am not, really), why I (almost) never allow myself to get drunk, why I will generally quit everything before I'm recognised as being more than adequate at anything. Because what if I'm almost good at something, and people start watching my next move, and they don't like what I do? What if I become famous and some stupid one night stand from a hundred years ago pops up and tells the world that I'm a fake or a car guard I forgot to tip tells how cheap I am? How will I cope with the embarrassment of it all? This sounds so very teenage and dumb, but it honestly is the mental leap that I need to take everytime someone asks me to get involved with something new, to present a little bit of myself, to get dressed and go out in public.

I can fake it some of the time, I can psyche myself up for things I know are coming, I can almost cope if I can laugh. But when I am a little blue, like I am right now, I'd really rather just keep my curtains closed and my feet in my slippers. I've been trying to blog more for months and I keep stumbling at the point where I need to be honest. The trouble with that, is that honesty, in this case, means admitting that I'm not entirely alright. And I don't want to do that, because I don't want you to always have the notion of disquiet hiding behind my poor attempts at humour.



  1. Thanks for sharing.
    I am also a serial quitter-it sucks!
    How to change???

  2. I think we are all on the same page as you! Some of us are just better at admitting it, like Reluctant Mom ;-)

  3. @Skewdad - it has to be some sort of control thing doesn't it? I mean, if I choose (consciously or otherwise) to quit then at least the outcome of any given situation is clear.

    @Karen - thanks, glad I'm not alone :)

  4. I like this post Tammy, yes, we clearly share some of the same issues, just some.

    But crab in the middle of the lounge in the middle of the night?? I could have turned that into a three part post!!! Wow what material you have, in your lounge, in the middle of the night.

  5. I kid you not - and I have the photos to prove it. I thought I was back in the realms of rodent infestation, but no. Crustaceans are the order of the day.

  6. Tammy, I am loving loving loving your blog, even if many times the comment form doens't load, I always want to write and say so.

  7. The comment form doesn't load? Hmmm. I'll investigate..

    Thanks Margot - means a lot x