Wednesday, March 11, 2009

an attempt to talk about my childhood before the attempt becomes foiled by the part of my brain that's kind of an asshole

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Lately I'm unsatisfied with this feeling in my head, which started about a week ago, when this strong sense of heavy decided to make camp in my throat, making it very hard for me to swallow and breath.

I'm not the one for a telephone conversation most of time, if I can help it; especially if I'd rather enjoy someone's company and conversation face-to-face for the sake of precious intimacy, but lately my talks with my friend Noah (who's a safe distance away in Youngstown, Ohio) let my heart come out of its protective case and stretch a little; he's extremely patient with me and I will adore always him for that.

He mentioned something interesting today: that I won't talk about my childhood. He said most Americans have a tendency to talk about their childhood, but I don't. I didn't realize that.


I'd like to think that I was a happy child (who wouldn't, right?), I had no brothers or sisters, I was very social--learning every classmate's name according to seat order on the first day of school, played well with my toys in my room alone creating universes scripting interpersonal relationships between My Little Ponies and various He-Men; was a tomboy; I colored a lot; liked rollar skating; I was always hurting myself falling; I rarely cried; made straight A's; and occasionally tried to see how long kittens could breath under warm bathwater.

I guess you can that curiosity...a few older adults who knew me said I used to ask questions incessantly: why, why, how, what; and wouldn't settle for vague answers that didn't seem to come together to make sense for me.

I remember being annoyed by the fact that I was patronized so much by people who seemed to be able to touch the sky with the tops of their heads; staring at their knees, I used to think anyone over 6 foot was a giant.

My mom was, and is a South Korean immigrant turned American by marriage to a playboy from Wisconsin; a guy who found her while he was stationed on some nearby Air Force base by the Air Force as an air-traffic controller.

Mom was a tiny eighteen year-old virgin with long black hair, I guess, who'd run away from an abusive home to work and reside in a coffee shop, and he found her there, married her, knocked her up (or vice-versa, I'm not really sure, still), made me, and the three of us moved to the states when I was a little over a foot tall.

Most of my life (and even since a few days ago--according to 15 minutes of maybe once-a-month smalltalk on how she passes her days lately aside from reading self-help books) my mother's biggest quest has been to perfect her English; so much more then even-before now, though, that she never tried to teach me how to speak, read or write her native language.

And she still chastises me occasionally, for not having taught myself the language when I'd had the chance, comparing me to full-blooded Korean-American kids who are fluent in both languages; telling me it's never too late to take classes.

This is the woman who raised me after my ABBA/gym/getting-a-golden-suntan-loving dad decided to start seeing a lot of different ladies at once, subsequently leading my mom to decide (and according to her) to leave him and start a new life in Tennessee with her much younger sister and her sister's husband, also a military guy (before he became a bartender with rock star dreams and a bad ass record collection).

This was the uncle who taught me about Pink Floyd, the Beatles, Frank Zappa, the Stones; knowledge came handy in high school when I went through my stoner/rock concert phase, when I had a thing for boys who could play guitars as a tie-dye wearing truent who smoked a pack a day of Marlboro reds even though they tasted like shit halfway through the pack. I was hard.


Am I avoiding talking my childhood here? Geez, it seems like my childhood actually finally just now ended after my move to New York...maybe that's why I'm mourning...

Why am I so unsatisfied? I know what my mom would say if I asked her. She'd say I've always been like that...that as soon as I got some toy I wanted, that I begged for, I'd immediately become disinterested in it...bored, and look for some new toy to want.

What the hell makes that so hard wired in a child, that it still seems to affect me like some lifelong curse? I-JUST-MIGHT-NEED-THERAPY. After all. Or is therapy too pretentious these days with the economy being in such rough shape?

I give up. There are much worse ways to live out the rest of my life than as a hermit who's lost faith in the fact that she's completely unlovable in a romantic sense.

I don't talk about my childhood because I don't like to dwell in the past when there's progress to lay paths for. People who talk about their childhood a lot are strange. I've decided this tonight. Right now.
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1 comment:

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