Monday, April 10, 2006

Stubborn Through Life

On a trip to Cape Cod, I decided I no longer wanted to nurse. My mother, having read a dozen "Raising a Child" books, knew that it was too early for me to quit nursing. But I didn't want to nurse anymore. I began to bite her every time she tried to feed me. Confused, she tried to give me a bottle, but I declined with great resistance. Only a cup would do, and so at 10 1/2 months old, I drank out of a cup.

During the early years of my life, this behavior continued.

My parents were worried that I would never potty train. I didn't cry when my diaper was wet or dirty, even if I was knee-deep in my own waste. Imagine their surprise on a 3-hour family road trip to New Orleans when I announced that I no longer wanted to wear a diaper. My mother, thinking of those childrearing books again and the nice leather interior of her car, suggested that I might want to make this decision once we were closely nearby a restroom. Luckily, my Bubby was in the car with us, and told my mother to let me do as I pleased. We pulled over and bought my first pair of panties. I had one accident while sleeping several nights later, but other than that, I was fully potty trained at 26 months old.

I was sent to a speech therapist in Kindergarten for saying my "S" like "Th." I sucked two fingers while holding my blanket, Nanny. Picture holding bowling ball. Middle finger up in the air. Strange, I know. The speech therapist showed me a picture of an old lady with her tongue sticking out. She'd said that's what I would look like if I didn't give up the habit. I gave my mom my blanket and stopped sucking my fingers that night. Vanity, my deadly sin.

As I grew up, the stubborness became a more repressed personality trait. Only when challenged did I jump at the chance to prove myself.

In 8th grade, I decided I wanted to act. My dad told me, as politely as possible, that I didn't have a very good singing voice. I knew this to be true. I'm vain, but not completely vacant of self-awareness. Regardless, I insisted on trying out for Annie at a local professional theater in Mobile. I made it into the chorus. While acting turned out to be something I didn't particularly love, I was in at least one musical from 8th grade until I graduated high school, and my singing voice still sucks. My dad loves that story.

Lately, I've become much more driven to get what I want.

At 24, the television show for which I'd been working the past 2 years went on hiatus. I went home to Alabama to plan my next move. I decided I wanted to work at a magazine. More specifically, I decided that only one of two major magazine publishing companies would work. My dad thought I was insane and insisted on my studying for the GMAT so that I could get an MBA. I e-mailed every person I knew asking them to forward on my resume to anyone they thought might have a connection to one of these employers. Sure enough, a friend of a friend of a friend knew someone. I went up for an interview on a Monday and began working at the magazine the following Thursday. That's pretty much the story with DC too. Decided I wanted to move here so I did.

Needless to say, for my friends who doubt my resolve to quit smoking for good…? If history tells you anything, I'm stubborn and determined this time around. Plus, the IV from the ER left these horrid bruises all over my arm. Tacky. I look like a heroine addict. Even if the resolve fades, could you ever imagine me being okay with such blemishes?


Post a Comment

<< Home