Tag Archives: memories

361. Childhood is wasted on children

WARNING: No mentions of sex or spankings in this post.

I had a mega-post all written. So big in fact that I needed to break it up into three separate posts. But then, I decided not to post it at all.
DELETE!

I concluded that, at that level of detail, it is not my story to share. Three posts about Chelsea are enough (357. We are Four. 358. Chelsea Moves In. 359. DD will Amp you Up). You’re stuck with me writing about my favorite topic – Me – and how better understanding Chelsea’s journey has taught me some things about myself, and people in general.

CHILDHOOD WASTED ON CHILDREN?
It’s a shame that childhood has to be experienced through the mind of a child! Why does such a grand time in our life, the most formative time of our life, have to be lived through the lens of a child? Why does childhood have to be wasted on children?

I say that a tongue-in-cheek to make a point that so much of what we experience as a child shapes us as adults. The problem is those experiences were interpreted through the reasoning and coping skills of a child.

Childhood experiences can have a tremendous effect on us throughout our life. And how our child-self interprets them can be so varied such that kids growing up in the same household with similar experiences can end up with totally different views about those experiences.

Those views are powerful because the conclusions we reached about an experience as a child BECOMES the conclusion that is forever embedded in our psyche. We become slaves to the reasoning skills of a child.

No matter how much we are told or provided clear evidence that an experience wasn’t our fault, or that we misinterpreted what happened, or whatever the case – there is no convincing that child otherwise. As a result, as adults, we remain mired in whatever emotions the experience triggered in our child-self and those emotions can sometimes become all-consuming.

GRANDMA’S COFFEE
I have a fond memory of my grandmother. I was four or five years old. I know my age because it occurred at a house they sold by the time I was six.

I walked into the kitchen and the aroma of freshly brewed coffee filled the air. She was standing, rather stoic, near the door of the back porch adjacent to the kitchen. She was staring out into her well-manicured back yard. The slight breeze of crisp and cool air seeped in through the screen door. To this day I remember the smell of the coffee, the smell of the air, the touch of the breeze on my cheek, and the look in my grandmother’s eyes.

It was a thirty second experience, or less, before she saw me and said something that broke the moment. I have no recollection of what she said, or of anything else about that day. I surmise the reason this brief experience was seared into my memory was because the look in my grandmother’s eyes. It was more stoic than serene. Even at four or five, I recognized she was deep in though about something very meaningful to her. There was something about her look that made a permanent impression in my mind. That “marker” allowed me to retain all the wonderful details about the moment.

I long to go to that house, stand by the back patio to the kitchen, door open, crisp morning air coming through the screen door, and enjoy a cup of coffee. So much so that I discovered the house is now a vacation rental. Once COVID is over, we hope to rent it! I think my love of coffee is rooted in that experience. When we are ready to rent it, I sure hope there’s a cool morning like the one in my memory.

That was a positive childhood experience. My point is, it was very mundane and inexplicable as to why that memory was seared into my psyche and gives me joy today. It doesn’t make much sense given the countless joyful things I experienced with my grandmother, but I couldn’t tell you of a single smell or what the air was like or the look in her eyes like I can for that morning in the kitchen.

But what about negative experiences? How you interpreted them as a child is now a part of who you are as an adult. Hard wired, deeply rooted, metastasized throughout the core of who you are, how you think, how you treat others, and most importantly, how you think about yourself. And those “negative experiences” could be things that are obviously traumatic, such as abuse. But they also could be over something that was mundane, yet our child-like minds interpreted them otherwise.

CHELSEA REVISITED
Suffice to say Chelsea had some traumatic experiences, and making them worse, they weren’t just cloaked in secrecy between those directly involved. It was a systemic, collective community of secrets, rooted in religion and family tradition. And while you can imagine what some of them might be, some of what she shared were truly mundane things that she interpreted a certain way.

Jaime is due back in about two weeks. Only in the last few days has Chelsea began 100% opening up with Jaime about everything. Not so much her childhood experiences – she says she shared all of that with him when they were dating. No, more importantly, she is sharing what those experiences mean to her. How they influence her, how they have defined her, and how she is striving to have them no longer define herself.

By changing those definitions, she is changing a part of who she is. Change is scary, for her, and for Jaime. While I don’t know what this means for their marriage long term, I sense this is bringing them closer together, not further apart. It’s just that the “new together” that defines their relationship will be different. Not sure exactly how or to what degree, but ultimately, they are changes for the better as far as resulting in a happy, complete, fulfilled, and secure young woman.

WHAT ABOUT ME?
I said this post would be about me. Well, I guess I lied. There was a bit about Chelsea there. ANYWAY – In addition to my realization that one problem with childhood is that it is experienced by children, it also got me thinking about why I connect so strongly to submitting to my husband. It caused me to re-examine my child-mind to better understand what is that makes submission so fulfilling and wonderful to me.

It goes back all the way to Post 3. The Search when I shared how I stumbled on the idea of Domestic Discipline. As I shared in that post, I approached it with repulsive feelings, and as I read more, I felt the repulsion melt and be replaced with giddy anticipation over what is possible. Why?

You can read thirteen posts I’ve highlighted in my Shortcuts regarding my thoughts on being submissive or the nine posts I highlighted in the Shortcuts under the heading, Finding Happiness.

I’ve read through all of them again, and while all true to my feelings, they don’t fully get to the root at trying to explain why submission fulfills me. I think I will give that a go on my next post! Uh-oh, esoteric ramble time!