05 May, 2010

"The terrible fluidity of self-revelation"

If there is one thing I am to recall about my childhood, it would be having this question with me, "why do I always end up liking/adoring/worshiping teachers, mostly of a specific kind that’s usually found in women, though not always". I must have asked this question to myself and people around me for more than a million times I suppose, nobody seemed to have an answer, nobody. It’s been years now, I just sort of got along with having that question in the back of my mind. For a good while, not having an answer didn’t seem to bother me much, and to be perfectly honest, I didn’t even think there was an answer to this question. It’s just as simple as this, you like a specific kind and type of people, although the idea of having my likes and dislikes sorted out in a stage so young didn’t quite sound right and too much of similarity in the liking pattern surely did amaze and sometimes frustrate me.

Anyway, so now, today, as I write this, I have the answer with me and it’s so saddening that I’m now wishing I hadn’t had the answer. I can’t un-know it though. That’s the thing about knowing, it’s so rigid, you just can’t not-know it once you know it. Unless you have Alzheimers or something! Well, so the answer takes me back to my childhood, way back actually, to the time when I was born. Being the third child, I was way too close to my mum, you know, like really close, but a different close, like the close in which you are close yet distant, I wanted her all the time but I didn’t want her to know that I want her, silly! The thing with growing up is that it’s a process of change and it’s normal until you don’t get hooked on to one specific phase. I got hooked on though, in a way. In case you’re missing the link, remember being the third child with just one to two years of gap between previous siblings means getting way divided attention. So you see why I wanted my mother so much? Anyway, so I took everything from my environment which was available to me, sometimes grabbed & snatched attention with both hands and clinged onto it like crazy. I also used to sit near the window, counting numbers way past thousands when mum would go out for shopping or something, and when numbers would fail me, I would think she’s never coming back and has left me forever, I remember feeling a million times that she is never coming back, i really was a silly child.

Anyway, as I mentioned earlier, things change, I changed too, as I grew, I divided my attention too. I used to go to this woman’s house in our building, to play with her children. She was almost the same age as my mother, and to be perfectly honest, I use to go to her place to be around her more than I used to go to play with her children, but I didn’t know it back then, I really thought I used to go there to play with her children, coz that’s what I really did there, just play with her children, although in return she used to like me, and now, being more consciously aware, I know I used to go to her place because of her liking me (which means her providing me positive attention) and not cause I wanted to play with her children who were the same age as my twin sisters, so if I really wanted to play with children I could’ve just played with my own sisters, no wait, I guess my sisters were quite young back then, probably new born, so yeah I couldn’t have played with them, but still, you get what I am saying right? Well, now you all should really know what the answer to my question is, I don’t quite feel like spelling it out in one direct sentence. Ok fine! I’ll just say it. So I liked a specific kind and type of teachers all this while because I saw in them what I wanted from my own mother, this does not mean those teachers were how my mother was, this simply means they were what I wanted my mother to be. I’ve liked two male teachers in my life as well, but they were that womanly sorta nurturing kinds as well, so my point still stands strong. And now that I know all the whys and hows, I really don’t know what is required of me to do about it! I just can’t sit back, waiting for affection and fulfillment of my childhood deprivations, because my complex self is all the more complex now that I’ve stepped into the adult world. And someone offering me their affection outright would only get me to ignore them and probably hate them. Now I just have this self-conflicting need for isolation and affection, at the same bloody time! I don’t see anybody’s fault here though, except for maybe family planning people’s? Ok jokes aside, really, if someone even dares to conclude by all this that my mother is the culprit here, I am going to extract that person’s every organ from their insides and feed it to the crows or eagles, whoever would like to have it. My mother gave me the best of her time and efforts she could’ve given me. Her struggles are more than my stupid self-obsessed acts of clinging onto my childhood or things like that. Her struggles were real, and that would take a whole new blogpost for me to explain!

P.s: Everything mentioned in this post is subject to a specific time and condition. THIS IS NOT A CALL FOR ATTENTION! Aslo, factors influencing the kind of behavior it did weren't working in isolation and therefore there are several things that cause a certain action or reaction. This is just ONE way of understanding it, may not even be the right way to decipher things!

4 Comments:

Anonymous Dawn said...

Dear as I was reading this post, I remembered how we met :)
Your analysis could be right but then I don’t see any reason why you should hate that conclusion.

It’s true those times your mom had more in her plate to handle and yet she did her part of sharing with all of you.
It’s good that you are proud of her for doing what she did and it is also okay to look up to people who inspired you in life with their way of thinking, caring and nurturing…at the end of the day the fact remains is that you love them.
There is no harm in doing that. We all do that in one or the other way.

Be proud of what you have and that is you can appreciate people and you see your mother’s behavior or act in them…it’s a lot to give that personal status to someone who is not even from your family.
You have a great heart dear keep it that way.

May Allah bless you and give more courage to understand the life’s reality.
With love always
Yours…fiza

1:56 AM  
Blogger Rahul Bhatnagar said...

You know Zainab, Id kill to have a life that's half this meaningful..

8:29 PM  
Blogger Thinking said...

hmm...

1:29 AM  
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2:25 AM  

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