Thursday, June 3, 2010
When I was Young
I believed a lot of things in my youth. For instance I was quite convinced until 25 that I was going to die at 23. Hey, if I was adopted they could have lied about my age too! And I knew I had a twin. All through college I looked for her. We had been separated at the orphanage undoubtedly.
All these beliefs did not endear me with my parents so I stopped mentioning them. In fact, for a year going on two at the age of 12 I only spoke when spoken to (isn't that what they were always asking of me?) and then with the shortest possible answer. Nobody noticed.
I was a highly creative and imaginative child and spent hours alone with books and sketch pads and clay. I saw things in clouds and cliffs others missed. I could make up elaborate fairy tales about the rose garden and illustrate little books for my baby sister. School was a serious interruption to these activities so I constantly got "Does not attend in class," "Does not use time wisely," and my favorite "Runs with scissors." In spite of aptitude tests I was just an average student. Mrs. Hill, my fifth grade teacher summed it up, "she sees no reason to achieve academically." Or to get along at recess. Not that I fought. It just seemed such a huge waste of time.
Hey, I was a changeling forced to live in a world I did not appreciate and without my twin! That I would stare at parents and teachers or classmates as if they came from another world earned me no points in life. At 16 I learned to fake it. So well in fact that until I turned 35 I forgot I was living this elaborate lie! I often think of that day, September 9th, as my real birthday.
It was clear to me I had to become an artist of some sort because artists were excused for all sorts of strange behavior. So I dabbled in various arts: dancing, costume design, acting, photography, mask making, sculpture and of course painting. I am happiest before a blank canvas in the quiet of my studio surrounded by my plants and my fur kids.
So, today being the birth date on that forged birth certificate, I plan to be in my studio creating for much of the day. Unfortunately I forgot today was suppose to be my birthday and made a dental appointment for the afternoon. Bummer.