The last few posts of mine have been hard going and I realise they where tough to read and even harder to comment on, for those of you that did persevere, thank you, I appreciate it and I know that can be hard work. Most of them where re-posts and re-writes of earlier work. I haven’t been in the mood for writing since last week when I broke off with Matt.
I got stuck for something to write so I asked a friend and he suggested I do a hypothetical on where I would be had my like not become what it did.
I sometimes worry about you, the person reading this and I wonder if the stories from my life are damaging to people who read them. I’ve come to terms with most of my life – most not all. I noticed when I first got into blogging that people’s stories effected me deeply and at times when I was felling down reading the bad things that happened to people and their depression effected me. I’m an insomniac and have been for many years since I left the place I grew up in.
Over time I’ve developed ways of overcoming depression, sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t, one of the things that really stuck in my mind was what if? What would I have been like now if the events that happened to me since 14 where put right?
I was a very different person then, at 14 I had very different ideas, opinions and outlooks. I was nerdy but not especially introverted, I hung out with the nerdy girls at school but more because I liked to, I was a big fish in a small pond there and my place was easy to maintain. I dressed plainly but with my mothers need to dress me to impress her friends I also had a great wardrobe and if I wanted something all I had to do was put my hand out. My mother was the eldest daughter of a reasonably wealthy family, my father had a great job, plenty of insurance and left us with a great deal of money when he died.
I was introverted in so far as I was quiet, but if crossed or presented with something I felt strongly about I made myself heard. I often clashed with classmates, my mother, stepfather and I took no amount of crap. I was a serious girl but not very humorous.
I lived in a affluent suburb, went to a very expensive girls school who taught us to be independent and work hard on our studies. Yes, there where a lot of bitchy pretty girls but if you didn’t preform well above the state average you where going to be asked to leave, they had a reputation and steep fees to justify, but they did offer assistance if you struggled with subjects, they just didn’t give you much room to slack off.
I had found a small amount of boyfriends since I started my interest in boys at around 13, at the time I had one that I cared for very much and had a decent relationship with him. I never had a very close girlfriend at that age, my friends and I hung out a little but not really after school. That was my fault, I was embarrassed by both my superficial mother and my arsehole stepfather.
I was and always had been fascinated by science, I read a lot, even back then, I was good at maths, English and I was very much the rationalist, but I did love sci-fi as I do still. I imagined a world in the future where rationalism would take over from superstition and stupidity – as I saw most people.
I’d tried to be less like my mother as possible but even now I can see her fingerprints all over my make up, my mother was snobby, demanding and elitist and those, now that I look at it, have been traits of mine as well.
I’m often impatient and dismissive and that I was then also, I didn’t like it when people blathered and didn’t get to the point, that I think I’ve managed to outgrow but when I drive I get road rage so maybe not!
So where was I going?
That girl, had she survived, had she stuck to her dreams – would have gone on to uni, done a science degree. My plan was fairly simple, as most 14 year old’s view of reality is; I had this grand Idea that I would be a mild mannered but brainy and sexy scientist, I’d probably invent cold fusion and a few other things. I’d planned on going to uni, shaming all the trampish girls by becoming famous and marrying a nice brainy guy and having a couple of super smart kids who would continue my tradition of sneering at the popular kids. I’d ride horses as a hobby and that was the extent of my plans.
I was going to be admired by everyone for my diligence and amazing mind, I would invent things that would save humanity and humbly accept Nobel prises, one after the other. I would love my husband because he would love me for my quirkiness, my devil-may-care attitudes, my bluntness and independent spirit. My children would become brilliant little minds, they would change the worlds and become a dynasty of decent, honest, industrious people who would change the world for the better.
Yes, that sounds like something you’ve heard before but you should know at this point I’m half German and the other half is English colonial administrators, not the sort of people who should be given any ruling power at all…
I was almost to the point where I was going to ‘do it’ with my then boyfriend, I cared for him very much and i had been very picky about who I chose. He had passed all my tests and experiments and despite my best efforts to stay a little detached by the time everything went horribly wrong I was very close to being in love. At the time I thought it was love but now I see it for what it was.
We where young, we where attracted to each other both physically and for what we both shared — opinions and interests. He was a confident, studious boy, a little sporty but he was social and confident, I admired that and it helped me be more so. I liked his friends, even his friends’ girlfriends where nice, and at that point I was becoming closer to them than my own friends.
My idea of me had things gone right is a fantasy, and it’s caused me problems, I used that view of what I should have been to put myself down for what I did become. I had to in many instances do stings I found deplorable, abhorrent and the opposite to what I felt was my nature. If I call the person I am now Scarlet, and the person I was Me – they don’t work together, one is impossibly inflexible in her views the other contemptuous of conventional ideas.
I let both of these two grow in me – I didn’t see a distinction – I don’t have a personality disorder but I kept Me as an ideal and that proved harmful to me. I have survived a great deal by rationalising what I have done and being blunt about it but the ‘Me’ never let me forget that once I was a lady now I am a tramp.
The real moment of clarity for me in recent times was this; it wasn’t being a tramp that I needed to resolve it was the fantasies of that 14 year old that I had been protecting over the years. Somewhere inside me I was always critical regardless of having no options, she wasn’t realistic after all that snotty kid, where Scarlet grew she refused to grow, this is something you might want to think about yourselves.
If you think you’ve failed or not become what you should have, maybe you just don’t know who you actually are, I didn’t, I’m fairly proud of where I am, and what I’ve survived, yes it’s extreme but experience is relative and my little lesson from this is you should forgive yourself and learn to appreciate how and who you became. From my personal experience I find people underestimate themselves almost without exception.
P.S. thanks Rigo, it was a good idea. <3