Saturday, September 14, 2002

'insanity runs in my family. it practically gallops.' *

sometimes i wonder how it is that i made it to 27...and how quickly, it seems, that i got here. when i was little, i always imagined that by the end of college, i would have secured the man i would marry and that we, launching together into our respective careers, would settle into our wonderful life and begin thoughts of children after an appropriate period of 'alone time'....i guess i missed the part that life is not as simple as picking a man and deciding that he's 'the one'. there's always a hitch: he has to love you back.

not so when i was 3 years old and in nursery school. back then, life was as simple as telling the little boy on the mat next to me during naptime that he was my next boyfriend. he always acquiesed. there was none of this dealing with the relationship or any other complicated thing....

but can i be frank? i'm glad that things didn't work out the way my childhood fantasy would have dictated, because i can nearly guarantee that i would have ruined any marriage that i began at the age of 22. you see, i didn't understand some of the vital things i now know about who i am and who my family is. growing up, i always thought that my family was some unshakable rock, with my grandfather at the helm, leading us all ahead as some proud, cohesive bunch. okay, the grandfather at the helm part was dead-on, but the rest of it? a sham. the truth is that there was a huge undercurrent of crap that, to be honest, still exists, but no one - and i mean no one - has ever publicly acknowledged it. the british aren't the only ones to keep a stiff upper lip....

well guess what? i'm over it. i am out of the business of attempting to protect anyone for the sake of silence. my family has got some real nuts in it (and i'm not talking about mental illness here so much as i am about really bad choices and jacked up ways to live in denial). but then i have this one cousin who has always been actually ill, to the point of being both seriously suicidal or homicidally enraged on any given day, and at every family gathering, she would sit away from the group and cry her eyes out because being with everyone was too damn much for her to bear. as a child, this frightened and perplexed me, and she certainly was on the list of those who aren't really in their 'right mind'....but the more i've thought about her, the more i realize that, chemical imbalances aside, this chick is a person who has obviously been in a tremendous amount of pain all these years. at least she wasn't willing to sit around making nice and pretending like everything was fine. i can respect that (even if sometimes her choices of behavior were slightly less than 'ideal').

news flash: i'm done with making nice and pretending everything is fine.

*from 'arsenic and old lace'

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