For several weeks I’ve been contemplating my 50th birthday. I had some great ideas for a series of articles, blog posts and how to incorporate the assorted crap that tends to circulate around the big five oh. When my husband presented me with the tickets to his family’s home in Denmark early May, all that planning around a land mark birthday went out the window on the back of a Nordic dragon. The destination for the beast was the front lawn of the charming estate known as Tofte across the Atlantic.
I began counting the weeks, then the days and finally the hours to greeting the Danish ground. I wasn’t able to focus on much of anything else except leaving one continent for another. That seemed enough of a big deal for turning five oh. A huge part of me was able to breathe a grateful sigh of relief too – no one was going to have to throw me a party, there wouldn’t be the stupid black balloons, and forget phone calls from beloved friends and family with the sounds of comical dirges in the background. Thank God for a husband who understands the secret agony of the HSP and pretending to have fun or enjoying the confusing antics of “normal” human traditions.
If I’ve learned anything in the fifty years I’ve been on earth this time, it’s that “normal” is something for other people, not me. Everything about me from my sense of humor to how I perceive the color “red” is different from the majority or what seems to be the status quo. God knows I tried to fit in when I was attending school and everywhere else I was required to be – but you humans are bewildering with your private thoughts regarding food and sex and judgments about each other.
Growing up partially deaf gave me the ability to read body language as a survival skill. I began to know what folks were thinking before they thunk it. Along with that dis-ability I was gifted with an extra sensory talent known as clairvoyance or more commonly known as “being psychic”. A double whammy for the world of the HSP child. My mantra for the adults in my childhood should have been, “Your lips are moving, you must be lying.” I recognized that it was best to keep my knowledge to myself, and learned to lie like a mofo too. I could spin a story faster, bigger and better than anyone, and often did.
It’s only been about a decade now that I’ve stopped telling tall tales, thanks mostly to a daughter who became a rabid hose beast from hell should I embellish even slightly about the size of a puddle. She cursed my story telling (lies) with her finger pointing and fact checking. I figured out how to settle in to my boring reality and much to my surprise I discovered that I told outright lies to keep myself from telling anyone my bizarre truth. The less tales I told, the more I had to look at my weird world of phantoms, fairies, angels and demons.
My reality would land the majority of you in a State Hospital sucking on a lithium lollipop or some other concoction devoted to keeping the brain quiet and the senses dulled. Keeping that in mind, allow me to share with you the five most important elements of life I’ve observed now that I’ve lived half a century as a white, hetero sexual, relatively intelligent, somewhat attractive female in the United States:
- There are people who you will love with all your might, all your soul and all your being and they will never ever love you in the same way. When you realize this, please – move on with your life and find new people to love. There are so many people to love.
- There are people who will love you with all they have and more, and you will never love them in return the way they love you. You can (and should) attempt to gently explain it to them, but chances are they won’t listen because it hurts them too much to hear the truth. When you realize this, please – move on with your life and let them find new people to love. There are so many people to love.
- There are people who will be a part of your life for only a little while, yet the experience of their presence in your life will remain with you for as long as you are alive. Forgive the users and abusers, honor the lovers and the beloved friends. Remember to respect them all as the teachers they became or will become.
- Develop an opinion about everything even if it’s “I don’t have an opinion”. Stick to it until you learn otherwise. Be open to the “otherwise” and for the love of all that is good and true, express your opinion if you’re asked, but wait until you’re asked.
- Love your boobs. Seriously, love the f*ck out of your boobies. Who cares if they aren’t perfect or you have weird nipples or whatever. LOVE YOUR BOOBS.
That’s about it. I shall revisit this in ten years to possibly add a few more points like, “take care of your teeth” and “write more letters with a pen and paper”. In the meantime, I’m going to go to a Danish beach and look for spear heads, cuddle dragons and talk to Viking Kings, because I can.