Late bloomer

I have been thinking lately about how I am what could be euphemistically termed as a “late bloomer.’  I know this probably sounds laughable to someone who knows I was married at age 19 and had my first of 5 kids at aged 22 but I’ve always felt like I was never quite on track in terms of gaining skills that other people had, on figuring out life.
Last night I was running with my husband on an inside track and as we jogged along I was musing about how we used to do this every dark early morning when Aaron and I were dating in college and how it felt pretty much the same. I wondered what my 19 year old self would think of my self today. I thought she’d probably wonder why I had not grown up yet.  I certainly have all the accoutrements of an adult.
But I’ve always felt this way, on the brink of being what I was supposed to be, but not quite there yet. And always a little bit behind of everyone else. Even though I always felt older  than my peers as a child, I never felt as “on top of things” as they were. Maybe because I wasn’t?
Case in point, I think I was well over 8 before I learned to ride a bike. I remember feeling super lame about that.That’s why I’m seriously considering getting one of these kids balance bikes for toddlers for Ella’s birthday in a few weeks.  I hear they are the best thing for figuring out how to ride a bike. She’s going to be a pro before she’s three. Not that I’m living vicariously through my kids or overcompensating or anything. Winking smile
Here’s a few more things since we are on the topic of my inadequacies regarding transportation:
I was about 21 when I got my drivers license (which is late even for a South African, who can get their drivers license when they are 18)
I was about 32 before I pumped gas for the first time
I still do not drive on the highway. I am terrified of merging (and I can’t see a way around getting over this phobia without risking people’s lives).
I will avoid parallel parking at all costs.
There’s tons of other stuff that I feel like functional capable grown ups do that I don’t do. Probably because I have a hyper-functional and extremely accommodating/willing/doting sweet husband, I’ve never had to. I probably could and would if I had to, but because I don’t have to,  I don’t. Since I am very very solidly into my 30’s (ok fine, I’m on my way to my 40’s,) this sometimes makes me feel bad about myself. I often feel a sense of inadequacy and lack of “belonging” that I can’t quite put my finger on.  I recently had a conversation with a friend which revealed that I have actually never felt a sense of belonging. I have always had a sense of being an outsider in some way or another and I think it largely stems from a sense of shame or inadequacy of some sort…and so a vicious cycle is set up.
I am reading a book recommended and loaned to me by my dear friend Deborah. It’s called “The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are” . It’s by a woman who has studied and researched the topics of fear and shame, and I found this thought provoking:

“if we want to live and love with our whole hearts, and if we want to engage with the world from a place of worthiness, we have to talk about the things that get in the way-especially shame, fear and vulnerability "
But here’s thing, we are instinctively silent about shame.  Being vulnerable doesn’t feel good, at least not to me. But feeling shame feels worse. I do believe that honesty is at the root of good things and I want to get rid of things that get in the way.
Our  Momedy Sketch Take Control Community Challenge starts March 1st. We are going to face the things that get in the way. Are you ready?  Check out this post to see how we are preparing this week.

*This was a sponsored post. While I am offered many opportunities to write sponsored posts, I will only accept those that I feel are a good fit for my readers and I can sincerely and genuinely endorse. All comments and opinions are strictly my own. I will always tell you when a post is sponsored.

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Anonymous said...

Well, if it is any consolation, it took me a very long time to comprehend that I was a mother as I felt like a daughter, and I got my drivers licence at 24. Enjoyed your post.

Jessica said...

I honestly believe that even those who feel they belong to "something" or some group or some cause or or times? They also feel as if they don't quite belong, either. I think it would be impossible for us to feel as if we belong to all things that and ideas and causes and jokes and friendships around us. I also think that some people accept this fact more readily and earlier in their maturation than others. Acceptance is the key for me, and I've just recently stumbled upon this self-realization. It feels good. I so miss reading you regularly.