Wednesday, August 24, 2011

We're All a Little Screwed Up

What I learned this summer:  A couple months ago I got one of those calls you hear about and hope you never personally get.  A friend was dead and the circumstances were not known.  A few hours later it was learned, or shared, that Craig took a bunch of sleeping pills and washed them down with vodka, one of the hard liquors he wasn't very fond of.

Sometime this year, I also learned that a friend has an eating disorder.  She told me that she was borderline anorexic, though I've since learned that she's more bulimic.  Intuitively, she knows better but somethng inside is set to believe that every calorie she eats will somehow transform that too skinny to give blood body into a an overweight person.

I've always thought both of these friends had their sh** together better than I did.  The reality is that their Alpha Gene is set to On while mine is set to off.  While it gives me no comfort to know that their personal demons are of the same magnetude as mine, it does make me feel like I can give myself a little break and not be so hard on myself.

Confessions of a First Generation Pole:  Spearking of not being so hard on myself, this article sums it up neatly.

Knowing the language seems the defining line between identifying as Polish or American. ...For my part, because I’ve forgotten what little Polish I knew, the language barrier prevents me from getting Poles to see me as one of their own—I’m just another American.  [Source]
When I was growing up, I didn't like being called a Pole-lock by my Puerto Rican schoolmates.  So while I never denied being Polish, I certainly downplayed it and didn't embrass my ethnicity until my late 20s and early 30s.

I've tried to re-learn the language. My mom claims I did speak some Polish as a child.  However neither classrooms at Discovery Center or Rosetta Stone has proven successful, mostly because I don't have the discipline to do the Rosetta Stone on a beautiful summer day.

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