For my entire life, (well as far back as I can remember) it feels like people often totally and bewilderingly (to me) misunderstand me.
You know how we are all supposed to accept and "love" ourselves and learn to love who we are?
And how we are supposed to strive to BE the real us, when and if we ever work out who that is?
Well, it appears I have a very big problem because, when I am just being me, most people just don't like me so much or just don't "get" me.
I accept all of the following things about me: I can be fiery, feisty, full-on, opinionated, passionate, grouchy, pissed off at bureaucrats and their bungling and definitely more of your glass-half-empty type.
However, I try hard not to be these things all the time.
They are a huge part of my personality, but I as I get older I am more and more aware of when to bring out those characteristics and when not to. On the inside, I am a huge softy and my sometimes turtle-shell like exterior is protecting one, fragile little kid.
If the opportunity arises, I adore to laugh, really laugh. The kind of laughing that has you crying and leaves you depressed afterwards. Sadly though, it's all too rare an occurrence.
AND, I love to dance and sing and talk and discover and listen and read and garden and cook and eat and drink and plot and plan. I am forever thankful and consider myself incredibly fortunate to have a loving husband, gorgeous grown children and a teeny number of true, close friends, all of whom are beautiful, accepting and understanding.
So, why can't I just accept my good fortune and deal with the fact that everyone just ain't gonna get me?
I can spend time with new acquaintances and believe I'm being jocular and jolly and friendly and chatty and a tad raconteurish. I ask lots of questions about them and their lives, because I really like to get to know people - Where they live, what they do with their time, what they like etc etc. And I get very excited when I stumble upon a like-minded soul, because people like me are kinda hard to find.
Then, after the fact, I mostly never hear from any of these people again. If I do run in to them again, I get a distinct sense of coolness, stand-offishness and wariness from them. Sometimes, a down-right rudeness and dismissiveness.
One thing that hurts and upsets the little me inside, EVERY single time, is being "shooshed" or told to "calm down" or "keep it down". I have worked out, after all these years, that's because what I hear is "Hey you, stop being you will ya?"
It's true, I do tend to be the one that shocks people or astounds people with my forthrightedness and up-frontery, but I'm always surprised when this happens and can't help but wonder if it's because I'm saying things that they think they can't or are not brave enough to say or if they just really would never go there.
Is it really just me?
Am I truly that unusual? Am I a rare breed of person whose brain speaks to mouth and mouth takes off before I have a chance to put it in to "don't-offend-people" gear?
Really, just like almost everyone else on the planet, (except a wondrous and enviable few) I want to be liked and appreciated. Not ignored, shooshed or even worse, TOLERATED.
I NEVER, EVER plan or intend to harm or hurt with my words, but will admit that anger, stress, feeling I'm under attack and that little kid inside sometimes make me defensive and I arm myself with words, sometimes hurty ones.
I'm just a person who expresses their thoughts, feelings and emotions...good and bad...is that really so wrong?
Often, inside me, that little, well actually not-so-little, voice gets quite loud and shouty and tells me I'm crap, fat, old/past it, and not-so-good/clever/bright/smart/gifted/talented and many other things.
That voice is quite good at it's job and more-than-likely the reason why I have attempted many things in my life and then chucked them in, because the voice told me I was kidding myself.
Can you identify with anything I am saying here?
Or am I really just one hell of a mangled-up, nut-bag once again saying stuff that really should never be actually said, out loud?
Here endeth the offload and grand reveal.
Hope I haven't lost you.