I know the title seems horribly conceited. What do I mean sounds? It’s totally conceited. But the truth is that it’s more scary than conceited. Why? Because I’d actually have to say something about myself.
I have been plugging away at this blog for a couple of months now. Technically, just over two months (although a large part on a different web hosting site). And I have just begun reading other bloggers. (Ok that’s not fair. I’ve been reading them before and since starting.) But I have been looking at what people do and I have been observing. I suppose it’s the nerd in me that does this.
I’ve noticed many trends. Lists are good things. So I have been learning how to write lists. Recipes and reviews are hits. Check and double check there. Parenting ideas are frequently mentioned. (Mine are buried in here somewhere. I swear. After all, it’s a parenting blog.). And then there are biographies. *screech* (If this wasn’t enough to get your attention, add the biggest and most obnoxious noise and multiply that by ten.) I know I buried that bio in here somewhere. I suppose if you go looking you will find snippets covered in food and wearing a tin foil hat.
Yes I am myself on this blog, but how much does my audience really know about me? Yes there is an “About Me” section on this blog. But it doesn’t get to the deep down portions of me that I want to hide from my therapist, my ex wife, the police and several secret government agencies. OK! Maybe not the therapist or the police and agencies.
Why haven’t I gotten personal on here? I’m not sure I have a good answer. A good friend of mine, who is actually reading my blog, told me that my best posts are the personal ones that reveal something about me and my situation. (I swear I have tried to avoid that. Sort of. Kind of.) But I don’t think I’ve done a whole lot of expressing myself after reading people’s blogs. After seeing some of the amazing vulnerability displayed by some I feel like my blog has me more in line with CIA/NSA recruitment than it does with being open.
So I asked myself if I were truly reluctant to share things about me that reveal who I am. Yes I have shared some fears here and here. And I have shared some crazy stories. But have I gotten to the real me? Hmmmm…
So to rectify this I am going to be sharing 10 things that I am sure some people know about me, but many do not. Will it reveal the true me at the end? If yes, then great! If not, speak to your CIA friend about me. I could always use freelance work.
10 things to know about me (told in no particular order so no putting out there on David Letterman. Wait he’s gone? I’m getting old. Ugh!):
1) I actually am a poet. Ok! Maybe not a published poet. I have seen some people put their poetry on their blog and I am impressed by their vulnerability. I just write poetry that touches me, and if it moves someone else too, that makes me happy.
“She shines in radiance as the sun
Glittering through a lofty cloud.
And all that’s ugly she did shun
With humble looks to calm the proud.
Skin as tender as creation
Singing of her glory aloud.
And in the dawn, and at the eve
Her tresses flowing in the wind;
Her naked shadow would receive
A grateful sigh, with every kind
Of longing look that did conceive
That wondrous soul that they should find.
One ray the more, one beam the less
Would find a naked hollow shell,
Of empty beauty’s wilderness
And broken dreams one should not tell.
But in her heart I do confess
Unmatched splendor that does compel.” – Me
2) I have a BA in English Literature and an Masters in Library and Information Science, but I feel like I’m not even that well read a person. Don’t get me wrong. I love reading. I love an amazing book and how it takes me away to other places. But I know of so many other people who read like 10 books or more a week and have a thorough knowledge of every author and every trend. As a librarian I should be working on this but I have found a passion for writing and that has kept me back a bit.
3) I was very happy to get married, even though I know I married the wrong person. I am not saying that I didn’t make a mistake. I know deep down that I did. But I wouldn’t trade my daughter for anything. And I wouldn’t go back and undo it all. There were lessons that I needed to learn that I wouldn’t have learned any other way. I would love to say that I could learn just by hearing about other people’s problems. But I’m the idiot who has to step into the crap myself in order to find out. I’ve gotta find people to surround myself with who learn the first way. Maybe they would rub off on me. Maybe.
4) I would be happy to be married again if I found the right person. I don’t think anyone wants to be alone. I know that there will be problems, crisis, and issues in a new marriage. I know that I still have things I need to grow in, and those deficits would be revealed in a new marriage. But I think I have grown in a lot of ways since then. And I’m looking to find someone to grow with, not to complete me or for me to complete them. (That Jerry McGuire line has to be the most scary and co-dependent line in all of cinema.)
5) I miss my close group of friends I had at the end of high school and through my college years more than I can ever say. I admit I feel this more keenly now being divorced. But truthfully it was the most amazing group of tenderhearted guys you would ever want to have in your life. They taught me so many amazing things about love, friendship, dedication, commitment, growth, brotherhood and wisdom than any other people I’ve ever been around. I grew with them. I learned with them. We were in the foxhole together, metaphorically speaking. I realize they have gone on to amazing marriages or other life plans but I want them to know that they are loved and missed. So a shout out to the guys: Jason, Danny, Dale, Doug, Tim, Reuben, Steve D., other Steve D., and Steve A. You carried me through that time. Life wouldn’t have been the same without you.
6) I hate cantaloupe, lima beans, and brussel sprouts. There! I’ve said it! I can get that off my chest. I was worried what people would think. How could I hate that food?!? Actually, cantaloupe makes me nauseous. I’m not sure why. And those brussel sprouts are just too bitter for my taste. I can hear people saying now, “I can cook it and you’d love it.” All I can say is maybe. Good luck trying. And who loves lima beans? Seriously?!?
7) I actually love both the Dodgers and Angels in baseball. I know that’s sacrilegious to some. I’m not polyamorous in life, but I suppose I am when it comes to sports teams. I see no conflict with loving both of those teams. And when the Angels hired Mike Scioscia, Mickey Hatcher and Alfredo Griffin as managers and staff, it was like the Dodgers Southeast. Maybe it makes me strange to some, like an oddity from Ripley’s Believe it or not. Who knows? Maybe I make the next issue.
8) Aside from being alone, my biggest fear is that my daughter will be hindered by what has transpired between her parents. It would be nice to lay the blame for bad things happening solely on someone else. And I’m not saying the other person doesn’t share a large part in whatever happens with my daughter. But with every relationship failure, there is always blame to be shared. Even if I cannot change the other important person in my daughters life, I can change how I react to her, as well as how I relate to her. I hope and pray every day that my daughter can escape some of the problems of her parents.
9) Sushi is probably my favorite food, and yet, when I had my first experience with it, I asked my friends why they would want to eat something that tasted like snot. I know when I went the first time to try sushi, I ordered sashimi on a bed of rice, I had no clue what I was doing, and the texture of the food was strange to me. But I liked seafood and was eventually convinced to go back and try it again. It’s now the only food that I can admit I have actually had a physical reaction to hearing someone speak the word. It was something akin to Homer Simpson’s reaction to a Donut. Scary! I know.
10) I desperately want to be “fully known”, and yet I am completely afraid of it at the same time. I suppose herein lies the reason for the high divorce rate and the rapidly declining marriage rate. This is all my fault. Wait. You mean other people are afraid of the same things? Ah! Yes I think many people get married and get into relationships, hoping that they are going to be able to be loved for who they really are. But we also are desperately afraid of the judgement of our spouses. And the way people go about judging today on almost every platform imaginable, I don’t blame people for being afraid to reveal themselves.
I would love to say that I am an open book; but I cannot count the times I have held back saying things, on social media or elsewhere, for fear that the other person would judge me. Two comments up, they just unfriended someone else. And friends are important to me. I know that in order to have friendships or healthy relationships you have to be yourself. But this brave new world we have entered has torn so many people apart. So this is why I crave a relationship, and yet, I am afraid.
So here are ten important things to know about me. Although, as I was writing this, I thought of tons of others. However, I would not want to read a blog on 1000 things to know about me. I would get bored, probably around number 10 . . . maybe 11. (Because my list goes to 11 for those Spinal Tap fans out there.) I hope you enjoyed the list, and I would love to hear one or two important things to know about you. Or any reactions to any of the numbers on my list. (Like those polyamorous sports fans out there. I know you are there. Let’s start a group.)
Hope to hear from you. And until next time, this is me signing off.
David Elliott, Single Dad’s Guide to Life