Has it ever, really, been a simpler time? Well, this little guy... err, girl, thought so; little did she, or those whose care she was under, know how not simple life would be for her. But on this day, life was perfect... probably.
I've always enjoyed the company of people who are a good fifteen, or more, years older than me - cousins, aunts, uncles, mom, grandmother, and what ever cast of characters came in and out of my life. They had so much to offer, and I liked the idea that they never seemed to mind me hanging around. Their kinship and rapport were of great comfort. I wish I could say the same about my peers, but for the most part, I've never really felt comfortable around people my own age. The two closest friends I had growing up, they were different, we understood each other. We were oddballs together, and that was okay with us.
Some of my favorite books are of stories which I can not only escape into, but where I am able to imagine myself sharing in the experience right alongside the writer. Curiously, I find myself enthralled by stories and adventures as told by men. Or maybe not. The first time I read Russell Baker's Growing Up and Good Times, I was in my early thirties and I felt like I was right there with him, growing up. Discovering Roald Dahl while reading Boy and Going Solo to my son, was fantastic. I wanted to be him. However, the strongest connection to a story from before I was born, was The Diary of Anne Frank. I read that book year after year, I remember the weepy tree in the front yard of the apartments where I grew up, we grew up together. I went from being a young girl into my late teens, sitting in a wooden seat during Summer breaks from school. There I'd spend hours reading the day away. I always had this thing about hiding... or fearing the need to hide from something. Yet at the same time, being able to relish the good & happy moments as they occurred; appreciating the simple things. Mostly, I needed to feel safe. But nothing about my life could even come close to that of Anne Frank's, she was so brave. Whenever I felt scared, Anne's strength and perseverance served to remind me that I had to be brave too. Is that weird, or terrible? Don't answer that. These books took me away, and I mostly liked where I went... except when I didn't.
So, yes. I do feel that perhaps I was a little late to the game of life. Of course, there is also the question, would I have mental illness, would my mom's life taken the same turns. Who knows. I'm just glad there are books that can lead me to not necessarily simpler times, just somewhere different.
At the moment, without the help of my kids to refresh my memory - they're asleep now, I wouldn't be able to tell you what real life was like in 2006. I'll see what I can come up with in the morning.
Until tomorrow ~ Lil
This post is written for Day 10 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge for July 2014 and NaBloPoMo.