I wear the clothes, drive the car, pay the mortgage, and have lost the hair, but I still feel like a little kid, forever waiting for Zoltar to turn me back into that insecure 12 year boy I remember. My body is all of 39 years old, but I’m Tom Hanks in Big. Finding myself in these adult situations, but using my 12 year old brain to figure out what the hell is going on. I still haven’t played chopsticks on a giant piano floor thing, in fact, I actually can’t even use chopsticks to eat food.
I mow a lawn, cook dinner, and notice myself actually picking up around the house. When I am done with a dish, I rinse it and put it in the dishwasher. I do all these adult things, but inside I’m still that 12 year old insecure kid I always have been. I’ve picked up a few tricks along the way to mask my mental age. Sometimes, the loudest guy in the room is the most insecure one, that I can tell you for certain. I hear things like “stop acting like a kid” and I’m just thankful they think I am acting.
I even found a girl I really like, and we have made it a long time together. I raise these beautiful kids, but I have no clue what I am actually doing. My oldest daughter is actually the age that my wife and I met, which is a complete mind fuck….
I see people with their shit together and I get jealous. I wonder when they finally became this responsible human, maybe they always have been, maybe they just got here, but I always wonder when they will ever be me. I never really think that maybe they are pretending just like me. When do people get smart, make the right decisions and act like responsible people? Sure, I guess I can answer a few more questions on Jeopardy than I used to, but I’ll never reach the level of someone like my Dad, who can clean up on that show and even answer Final Jeopardy correctly, WHO DOES THAT??
Every room I am in I think about how I am the dumbest person in that room. I make up a few words or recite something someone smarter than me said so I sound intellectual. I’m always scared for someone to question me or find out I am bullshit. Like, I’m forever scared to run into Matt Damon at that bar near Harvard University and him to question my thoughts on Gordon Wood and asking me “Do you like apples?”
I will concede that I look confident. I know I do sometimes, because it’s all I have been thinking about before walking into any room. I have a one liner ready to bust your balls as soon as I walk in just to throw people off my insecurity scent. It’s funny, cause I hear compliments all the time. Stuff about writing, or being a good Dad. I even have a friend who every single time he sees me, we hug and he compliments how strong I am. It’s such a little thing he does, but, it elevates me to feeling like I am a foot off the ground, not in the quicksand I feel I am in most of the time.
When I talk with my parents and I mention I am insecure they laugh. They don’t even let me think that way. They don’t even take me serious. My Mom says “if you’re insecure, I feel bad for everyone else, you’re the most secure person I know”. And I know I am home, at my parents, the place I feel the most comfortable outside of my own home, but they do the same thing, they take my feet out of that quicksand.
Now that I think of it, lots of people pick me up without even knowing it. When a reader comments on a story I crack a little smile. I value what the people I love say, and with every word of encouragement I bury that insecure little 12 year old a little further down in my subconscious. Even just thinking now as I write this about all the people I love I think about how lucky I am. Maybe everyone feels a little like Tom Hanks in Big and I am not alone. Maybe the antidote to those feelings is remembering how you make people feel. I started to write a story about my insecurity and I ended up picturing a good friend of mine and his constant support and I can’t stop smiling.
Words just brought me out of a hole I was in. I wanted to write about how my insecurity affects me, about how me and ole Tommy Hanks were the same person, and I ended up complimenting myself thru the words I had been told by others. Make sure you use your words for good. Tell people you love why. You never know where they are in their lives, if they are happy or sad, but I can tell you they will remember your words. Use your words for good. They are the easiest, most inexpensive thing you can give to someone.
Categories: Adventures of Me