Popeye and me

braccio-di-ferro

I’m 56 years old. I’ve never fit in. I’ve never been what anyone wanted me to be, or thought I should be. At times I’ve tried – especially when I was young – but it never really worked. I always end up just being me.

My original mother and father didn’t want me. My adoptive mother wanted a daughter, but she didn’t want me. She wanted me to be more like her, and I tried, but I just wasn’t. Our relationship has changed now because I take care of her and I’m all she has, but we still argue about the way I do things vs. the way she thinks I should do things.

I’ve never had a lot of friends, and I’ve managed somehow to alienate almost all of them sooner or later throughout my life. Depression played a large role in that, I’m sure. It’s what has damaged all of my relationships – with men, too. In many ways, that, more than anything has shaped who I am.

I’ve made the wrong decisions about almost everything in my life and I’ve failed at almost everything that ever really mattered to me.

At work, as I’m winding down my career, I find that I’m not fitting in with the 15-year olds who are running things now. I’m getting the message everyday in a thousand different ways that there is nothing about me that is valued in this company. It’s hard to get up in the morning knowing that I’m going to go to spend the day being reminded over and over again that once again I don’t fit in.

Social media tells me that I’m not living life the right way. The 15-year olds tell me I’m not working the right way. Most people I know have friends and family, as they have managed to live a full life, in spite of obstacles. On TV my life would be portrayed as the butt of jokes on a sitcom.

The Loser.

I’m a loser, baby. So why don’t you kill me….

In spite of all that…I’m here. I’m alive. I’m real. Against all the odds I’ve made it this far without being a burden to someone else or to society. I’ve struggled to stay alive and to become a better person. I have value simply because I’m here on this planet.

I’ve worked since I was 14. I’ve worked a lot of different places in several different capacities. I ran a business of my own for 5 years. I’ve given 18 years of my working life to this particular company. I have done a crapload of good work over the years. I have experience and I’m loyal. If others fail to see that, too bad. When I started here, many of my current co-workers were learning to use the potty or drawing pumpkins in elementary school. Someday, I’m guessing, they’re going to know what it feels like to be devalued, too.

So none of it matters. I’ll keep fending off the blows, healing the wounds, and going on. All that matters is me and what I think about my work and my life, and I think I’m doing just fine. My mother won’t live forever and in 5 1/2 years I will retire. I’ll be free in my life then in a way I never have been and who knows what I might accomplish? Who knows what I’ll have to offer the world before I’m gone?

I’m not done yet, and I am who I am; simply me. One and only. Not a loser, not a winner. Just me, doing the best I can.

And that is enough.

 

5 thoughts on “Popeye and me

  1. Retro Roxi December 8, 2018 / 12:45 pm

    You are far from being a loser. You remind me of myself in much of your writing. We are unique and complex and we ‘fit’ into a one of a kind puzzle. One that is ever changing and fluid as to allow the beauty to emerge despite the brokenness.

    So if that makes you a ‘loser’….. then I’m one too. And I’m okay with that. 🙂

    I wrote this last year, perhaps it will resonate with you…

    Kintsugi

    Our lives do not go backward
    nor tarries with yesterday –
    for every wrinkled line
    is a road map of
    this journey –
    and every scar,
    a solemn decoration.
    It is perception that
    writes timeless poetry
    upon flesh and mind
    with quill dipped
    in golden ink…
    creating art
    despite the
    breaking –
    for that is when
    true beauty emerges.

    Like

    • wsquared December 8, 2018 / 1:03 pm

      That’s just beautiful. Thank you for sharing it with me. No, I don’t think we’re losers. If I remember correctly, that was the point of that post. We’re each unique, living the best way we can. We all add to the human story. There are as many ways to live life as there are people on this planet. There’s room for all of us, and we’re all just fine the way we are. I’m so happy to have found you; we seem to have so much in common. Thanks for your understanding and encouragement. I’m very happy to be a member of our singular tribe. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Retro Roxi December 8, 2018 / 1:11 pm

        I’m happy to have met you too my friend. I’m very particular who I allow into my little world, and you are welcome to be in it! I truly enjoy your writings, much wisdom can be found in them. I too, have been writing a long time (aside from the fun and memories of my Retro blog) — it’s a great outlet and a way to share our offerings with others. 🙂

        Feel free to reach out to me via email if you ever want to connect. I have a contact link on my Retro blog. Hoping you have a terrific day!

        Liked by 1 person

      • wsquared December 8, 2018 / 1:25 pm

        Thank you! I hope your day is great, too. 🙂 I’ll be in touch soon.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. wsquared December 8, 2018 / 2:43 pm

    PS had to look up “Kintsugi.” Great title. 🙂

    Like

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