Trigger warning! In this post, there is mention of those sharp utensiles we use to cut veggies with, well, cut meat with.
After reading a few other posts last week, I realized something that has managed to keep me in the shadows of my own life. One of my most debilitating fears is that someone "see" me become a 7 or 9 year old.
I often freeze, stutter, or just plain freak out at times in public. It's always embarrassing, but I hide it well enough that to others who witness it, well, they think of me as eccentric or goofy. They also know that in most intellectual or verbal debates, I will win.
There came a time, about 20 years ago that I realized it was easier to just 'go for it' and excuse it later because the more I tried to hide those episodes, the worse I looked to others. For example: A week ago, I was with a coworker who had wanted to ride along with me to do some shopping on a Saturday. She wanted to go to a Sporting store to look at the punching bags for her son.
We had enjoyed the whole morning shopping and talking and getting to know each other better and our last stop of the day was for the punching bag. We began by just walking around; there was a lot to see, the store was a huge place. We chatted and commented on everything we thought was interesting. But, we were tired, so we started moving to the other side of the store, looking around for the punching bags.
My friend spotted the tall metal frames to the punching bags and we began cutting across the back of the store to get to them. Suddenly, in front of me was hunting knives - huge, shiny, silvery hunting knives. Suddenly, the store was cast in shadows. Thick air mixed with smoke swirled around my thoughts and I lost sight of my friend. I remember reaching out but I was all alone.
Just as quickly, my friend was standing at my side, looking at me like I'd suddenly grown pink hair. I tried to control my breathing and told her I needed to get something to eat because I felt dizzy. Then I excused myself to go to the bathroom.
All was okay when I returned a few minutes later. It's better she think I'm just hungry, than crazy. She doesn't know I'm a multiple and I'm not crazy, but she doesn't know any better and I'm sure I would have lost a new friend. So - I'm quick with excuses/reasons that cover up the real issues. Many of my friends think I'm high strung - :) they have no idea...
My daughter's way of describing those situations is, "Come on, Mom! No one will ever figure out you are a multiple! The way you are in public is like the invisible man going around flashing people!"
Gosh, gotta love her.