Having spent a good number of weeks with my family, living in their home, eating their food, living in their surroundings, I’ve been reminded of where I came from and I’ve been greatly reminded of what my life used to be like. I can tell you now, I AM SO HAPPY AND GRATEFUL FOR MY LIFE AND WHO I AM AND WHAT I AM LIKE, RIGHT NOW.
I’ve seen just how different I am from the rest of my people. My mum used to call me “snobby”. She told me I always acted like I was better than “them”. Them being my family (namely my folks, siblings and her side of the family). It’s a bit strange when you’re told as a kid that you’re different from your family, your core group of people and that somehow you don’t belong just because of your way of being. I must say it did affect how I interacted with them, for sure.
Now that I’m older, I’ve finally understood what she meant though she used the wrong word. It’s not snobbishness she was describing. What she was describing with the word snobby was that I set a better standard for myself and at this age, although she made me feel bad about myself for it, for a long time, I know that this inherent way of being was actually a really good thing.
You see, to be snobby is to be exclusive because certain people are not as good as you. That would entail 1) thinking you’re better than others and 2) only wanting to be with those of your standard. Yes I can be very snobby. The thing is, I was never exclusive with family and did not often think I was better than anyone. In fact, I was often the one being made to feel substandard and excluded for being different to everyone else!!
All I was doing was enjoying and maintaining being neat, tidy, clean and organised but for some reason this was perceived as snobbishness. As a kid (and up to now I guess), if I ever perceived someone’s hands to be dirty and those hands come close to me, it really icks me out. If they touched my clothes or God forbid my hair or face, I have a mini panic attack. I just hated other people’s dirt, especially in my vicinity and definitely not on my person.
I forgot I was this way because I let go of a lot of my OCD behaviours and also lowered my intolerance to mess and dirt when I lived with other people during my uni days but mostly I forgot because Tony is even more of a neat freak than I am and I have had the pleasure of not having to experience huge amounts of mess for YEARS.
So, here I was happily in my bliss without even knowing it until I stayed with my family for a few weeks.
In that time, I ended up booking a Vinnies pick up, a council pick up, cleaning up and sweeping their garage, cleaning the bathroom and both toilets a few times, tidying for a property inspection, cooking and washing dishes every day, organising the food cupboard, clearing up and organising the contents of the freezers and fridge, killing drain flies, vacuuming the lounge and stairs every few days, doing laundry and washing my sheets about 10 times as often as the rest of them put together, arguing with their landlord to fix a mould problem asap, emailing their property manager regarding other household concerns, fixing 3 of their malfunctioning doors, selling things, giving away things, throwing away some others, packing and storing the rest and basically doing all this while maintaining my eBay business, sorted out something with lawyers, sold a piano, cleaned the lounge and dining room of all clutter and mopped the floors… oh… and I planted a few herbs too. By the time I left, it was all clear.
Why did I do so much? Because I realised just how little dirt and mess in any form that I can tolerate. I tried, I really did try to accept their way of life and just go with it but the more I sat there in the mess, the more and more stressed I got. I mean REALLY stressed. The stress of sitting there and doing nothing was so much more than the stress of just doing everything. The thing is, this is the story of my life, what my family tolerates vs what I tolerate are 2 almost polar opposites and exactly why I moved away and never came back. I’ve got my own shit to deal with, I certainly don’t need the stress of dealing with my whole family’s crap too.
Can you imagine? A lifetime of doing everything for everyone all because I was born the “snobby” one…
They say the apple never falls far from the tree.
As I write this, I am sitting at a table where the table cloth has a blue and yellow floral/fruit pattern all over it and this is covered with a plastic table sheet with colourful tropical fish all over it. It’s completely doing my head in. Colourful fish on blue and yellow fruit stresses me out. When I asked why it was this way, the answer was “because nobody can be bothered to change it”. Mind you, to change it just means to take them off and replace them with a different table cloth but “no one can be bothered” (because it involves too much washing).
So… both that answer and the fish on fruit makes me want to grab the whole table and burn it.
It also screamed loud and clear that I come from a family of people who’s creed and anthem is “Am I bovered?!”
Drives me nuts. I actually feel like I’m the crazy, super impatient one with strong OCD tendencies when in fact I’m just the one with lower tolerance for mess and inaction. I am the only one who CAN be or IS bothered!
SO… yes, I am different from the rest of my people and yes it seems I have a mild form of OCD compared to them but boy oh boy am I glad I have always been this way.
So how far can an apple fall from a tree? Because after this trip, I’m convinced that I’m one of those apples that got picked and transported to a supermarket in another country.
After drafting this blog, I went on a retreat to help clear some emotional baggage and learned that there are trapped emotions that can be carried through many generations.
If I was not so OCD about clearing dirt and crap from my vicinity, I wouldn’t be working on clearing the spiritual, emotional and energetic crap either. THANK GOD I’m the way I am because it’s led me to clear things that are mine as well as inherited and by clearing these things in myself, I actually clear them for ALL generations. It only takes one to be different but at least that one can make changes for so many in the past, present and future.
“What we do in life, echoes in eternity.” ~ from the movie – Gladiator