...But i ain't listening.
Don't start. i am not rude by nature - unless you're rude to me first. Probably not the best way to be, but at least i'm honest.
What i'm talking about is something i was reminded of that happened years ago. When i was a kid...Probably 11 or 12.
And, of course, all names will be changed to protect...Me.
Jump in my Time Machine & travel back with me to the year 1974. "The Godfather" won Best Picture. Nixon resigned. Robert Blake won Best Actor in a Television Drama (apparently he also won for Most Likely to Off a Mate.
i'm living with my Crazy Auntie. Well, she actually hasn't gone crazy yet. My uncle was suffering from Alzheimer's (even though it didn't have a name then), Great Crazy Auntie, after he passed away, had it as well...Kicked in hard.
(in a nutshell, here's the basis of my life: my Mom wasn't married when i was born..No big these days, but in the early 60's, in a small town, it was a HUGE deal. So...My family, being extremely religious, decided to come up with this great story, that my GCA was, in actuality, my mom.
Hmmm...A woman in her early 60's, being the mother of a 12 yr. Old. Sure - i bought it. Silly me.
i believed whatever adults told me. Oh, and the next year my mom finally told me the whole sordid story.)
But - here's the story...GCA had an older daughter, who in turn has four kids. The oldest daughter had married & had three kids, all of which i'm older than. Two girls & a boy. They were cute. Really cute. The girls would model in local store catalogues. They had blonde hair & olive skin. And skinny. i was chubby, reddish brown hair, Casper-the-Friendly-Ghost toned skin and freckles. Not the kind of kid you want in your advertising.
They were everything i wasn't. And they knew it, too. i was constantly ragged on by them about everything i did...And everything i liked. "Oooh...Valerie likes Donny Osmond." "Lookit her now...She thinks she's gonna be a writer."
You get the idea.
Well, as if this wasn't enough fun, i got this from their grandmother (remember? i think she's my older sister. My very older sister.) and my grandmother (who i think is my auntie): "why can't you be more like Cassie? Cassie doesn't dress like a slob. Cassie always helps around the house. Why can't you be more like her?"
Cassie is freaking perfect. Whatever. i kinda ignore the whole spiel. Just like i mostly ignored the kids who teased me in school.
Oh, did i mention Cassie was brilliant in math? Seriously, i could barely add 2+2 and have it come out as 4.
Why can't you be more like Cassie.
Blah, blah, blah.
Years have passed. We've all grown up. Through the grace of God, i have learned that i am smart. Not gonna be a Rainman, math-wise, but i have lots of talents. i have confidence in myself, and my abilities, as well as my disabilities. I have learned what i can & shouldn't do.
Fast forward (or backwards. The choice is yours) to 1997. i'm "finally" getting married (well, you can't change EVERYONE'S opinion, now can you?!). And i invite my cousins, which includes Cassie.
Not close, my extended family & i. Part of it is bitterness on my part. i'm still working on that.
The reality is that we are very different. Different values. Different goals & interests.
Well, at the reception, all the guys, married or not, was ogling Cassie. You see, at 20, she had a boob job, got pregnant, got married, had the baby and got divorced...All before the baby was a year old.
She had really nice boobs.
Now, she's still divorced, still has the boob job. She does drugs. What kind, i have no idea. But, wrapped up in that incredible ego she had, is, i hope, still a woman with a lot of talent & gifts to share. Wasted away because she believed her own hype.
And they wanted me to be just like her.
Of the five "kids" in this, my extended family, i am the only one still married. i have no drug problems (vicadin doesn't count!). My boobs are my own, and are mighty fine, if i do say so.
i still talk to my parents, and don't blame my mom for mistakes of the past - hers or my own.
i am me. i like me. i ain't Cassie.
And i'm a whole helluva lot happier. Take that, family.