I am who i am because of them.. after years of searching for my identity, and smugly bragging about forming my own person, and shaping my own life, today i find that i am exactly a cross between my mother and father. I am severely mournful of all that time spent in delusion that i had any say in how i turned out at all.
My mother married at 18, she married for love, after she had dated a christian for four years before, and directly after he had converted for her, she met my dad and ditched her much forbidden love, for real love. She was only 18 when she married, imagine if she had a few more years to "date"! Can anyone blame me really for dating sailors and agnostics? Can anyone wonder at my inability to settle for anything but the real thing?
My mother is also a very fixed in her ways woman, she is a bizarre mix between liberal and open minded and change fearing control freak. She has never imposed her authority, she gently instills ethics, and never rules. But you cannot, simply cannot convince her of anything, she bought a CD player 4 years after they hit the market, for four years she claimed to know better, ditto for cell phones, ditto for cable, etc etc.... Is it really so weird that i double check after people's work and am stubborn to the point of being hectic?
My father, now he, i have never really met. He passed away when i was six, but i remember him fairly well. He is the man i never saw frowning, the man who pampered me endlessly, the man i hid the cigars from. It has happened on several occasions that people look at my ID and ask me if i am his daughter, i say yes to the stranger, and i am automatically served better, talked to nicer, smiled at in gratitude. I thought this bizarrely freakish. When i reported this to my mom, she smiled knowingly like it was the most natural thing in the world. Stories of him were scarce till i lost my childhood friend in a car crash at 19, i was having trouble dealing with death so my mother took me away for two weeks and started telling me about my father.
He was a volunteer doctor with the P.L.O at one time, he was offered the position of Minister of Health in Nigeria and turned it down, he was the reason my mother's brother had a roof on his head, everyone adored him, he was a very heavy drinker and smoker (borderline alcoholic), he gambled his inheritance away, he was very possessive of her and he died of his second heart attack at 49. After his first heart attack he was told to stop drinking and smoking, my mother reports him saying "if i can't live the way i enjoy my life then I'm not really living am i?" Meanwhile he never complained about his health. He was a very giving tolerant man.
I rest my case.
Is it any wonder at all that i am an extremist?
Between the two of them, i drink with severe enjoyment but never allow myself to lose control, i quit smoking with difficulty to avoid heart attacks that i am prone to, but i did quit. I am an idealist who believes everyone can make it out there, yet i am incapable of team working.
I could go on and on, but i am simply them split in half and sewed up to make a new human being. They passed on their contradicting strengths and weaknesses, i have his tolerance but not the firmness, i have her neurosis without the skepticism. Basically they gave me the good things without the counter acting strength to save me from abusing myself....
Yikes! Well at least i don't get his addiction to alcohol and gambling, my wilderness takes other directions, the mothers directions..
I don't know why i ever bothered to analyse myself so much or try to change character traits and such, i would've ended up here anyway, it's the way i was made.
I have only one hole in this theory; my sister...