Wednesday, December 29, 2010

a rambling mind, the early years

I confess...I believe that we are all fluid and works in progress.  I believe that we are impacted by a multitude of factors and always becoming rather than finished.  That said, there are many moments in my early years that show much of what makes me who I am was there from fairly early on.  Some examples...
  • From what I've heard, it isn't uncommon for babies to react a bit to the many vaccines that mark the early months of life.  They get cranky, maybe even run a little fever.  I went beyond that and got very ill with every vaccine.  They actually adjusted the routine to try and alleviate the misery that I showed (and that, no doubt, was passed to my mother).  I haven't changed...I don't get the flu shot because I react terribly and I'm generally on the sickly side. In later early years, strep throat was an annual event. My body showed some of its challenging issues pretty early on.  (Side note:  I favor vaccinations generally...I'd get any that are really necessary and vaccinate a kid if I had one)
  • My mom was the primary care-giver in the early months (well, beyond that too).  She's a speech pathologist by trade.  My dad's a doctor and everyone in my family in education oriented.  No one spoke baby talk to me.  Pretty much ever.  I'm not sure how old I was..probably pre-verbal myself but close to talking when my grandmother's friend visited.  She didn't know the speech habits of my household and, while doting on the adorable baby (modest, huh??), she touched her necklace and said "Look at the pretty beady beady beadies"...or something close.  My mom says I looked at her like she was completely nuts.  Conjecture has it that I was thinking, "It's called a necklace, lady" and just couldn't say it quite yet (though I did talk early and in more complex phrases than the average to)  The traits seen here...being on the smart side (more modesty), liking well-used words, and being a bit snarky when intelligent people act stupid.
  • I remember the aftermath of this event, but not the moment itself.  Apparently, I had asked a pre-school classmate to move.  She didn't.  I asked her again.  She didn't move.  I bit her.  She moved.  What I do remember is hearing two teachers talk and hearing the term "problem child" retrospect, the teacher was likely pretty thrown when the 3 or 4 year old girl with all the curls said "Problem solver!"  Again, a bit sassy.  And also quite logical...I apparently explained it to my mom with the logic above...asking didn't work, biting did.  (Note:  I outgrew biting, but still like logic)
  • There are two circus tales.  I think this one happened a little later, but I want to build to my favorite.  I was on a school trip, either kindergarten or first grade (i.e 4-6yo).  My trip-buddy and I got lost.  She thought she saw the teacher (another early sign...I was shorter and couldn't see), she dropped my hand and ran off.  I was alone in a big crowded hallway.  I wasn't all that scared because I knew what to do.  When you got lost, you were to stay where you are and the grown-ups would find you.  So, I sat down.  In the middle of the hall.  I remember ankles passing, many almost tripping over me.  I'm here so I must have been found but I think that may not have been exactly what the teachers meant by staying put.  Early insight here, I like rules and tend to follow most.  I also take things pretty literally.  And I get lost easily.
  • Circus Story #2 (and my all-time favorite story of me) was with family.  I watched the events with rapt attention (another lesson: I was a good focus-er, even at age 4ish).  I very clearly remember when the tightrope-walker-man appeared. The crowd fell silent, as they do at such moments.  I remember being filled with fear and worry for this man.  I wanted him to be okay. I felt tense and I couldn't contain my concern.  With the crowd silent, I yelled up to the tightrope-walker-man "Be careful, don't fall!"  I remember the crowd, and the tightrope-walker-man all turning to look at the odd youngster (still with loads of curly hair).  I imagine that somewhere there's a tightrope-walker-man who tells this story (and maybe uses it as a warning in training new folks).  Early signs of me:  I am a talented worrier and this extends to utter strangers...I worry about people I pass on the street...I've gotten shier (note: did you know shyer and shier are both accepted?) and quieter, but I'm still yelling warnings inside.
I have others examples covering many me-ish things...early love of books, never-ending clumsiness, being the only kid who didn't have big lists of toys or other things I wanted for the holidays.  But I like the tightrope-walker-man story (and saying, though not so mugh typing, tightrope-walker-man) so let's end there.


Righteous Runner said...

Hilarious! I like the new template too.

Lesley said...

Have an awesome New Year. I know you deserve it. I hope 'our' version of health comes your way more often than not.

Be happy in 20110.