Character Building days should come with a warning. Like no-one should ever have to wake up all alone and abandoned to one of those days … completely oblivious that you are about to hit the Serengeti Trail playing the role of the weakest gazelle in the herd while the lions circle. Compassion does not have to be a big production, but the coffee fairy should at least leave you a great cup by your bedside. Maybe someone could brush your teeth for you or something. And of course the entire team from Emergency Relief should be there offering words of encouragement and handing you a teddy bear and a cookie.
A mommy should be on stand by.
And just once I would like to be the one searched for and rescued from the crap in a day like today. I don’t even have to make the evening news, or become a You Tube virus. I guess I am still really bitter over having lived 2 years in the woods on dirt and tree bark before my family figured out I was “accidentally” left behind that summer vacation.
I was a teenager. I was just a naked, abandoned teenage, running with skunks through the forests. (couldn’t keep up with the wolves and the badgers were really ill tempered, skunks were not so picky on how bad I smelled).
I walked home.
My family said they didn’t know I was gone. They thought I was in my room. Then they yelled at me. I got grounded for being out past curfew … and for losing my new thongs. (I used them to fight off the bears)
My character could pump iron with the best of them after that. I thought I had reached the pinnacle of character building. There are supposed to be rewards, a standing ovation, a crowd of people gathered in an auditorium to see the slides and tell me that my life was an inspiration to them. What the heck happened to THAT party? I survived my family, I survived the woods, I escaped …. come on …I deserve a vacation from crap. I deserve forever and forever amen.
So what is up with today???
And no-one warned me.
I didn’t even see the bus convoy coming. Who knew buses could act in concert, driving over and backing up over my mangled body with such precision and timing? Like synchronized swimming without the nose plugs or chlorine.
Picking gravel out of your teeth is a lost art form. Where is the pinterest category for THAT???
Learning to kiss your own boo-boos is not as emotionally satisfying as having your parent do it though. For one thing, I can’t reach everywhere to kiss it better. For the other, people start trying to force feed you medicine when they hear you arguing with yourself and demanding to know if you are adopted and screaming that you want your real mommy. I think I am scarred from today. I tried the whole “be your own parent” thing. That sucks too. I just don’t think I believe in myself with the same wild abandoned that I believed in my parents as a kid. I think I am a liar and that I like my brother better than me. I’m not as impressed with the occasional plate of home made cookies I manage to bake. I am actually kind of disappointed in myself that I ever felt a plate of cookies could make up for two years in the wilderness wearing maple leafs.
Growing up does that to you – shatters all the illusions and spits on the magic.