Friday, 6 March 2009

A-Z FACT FILE: G... H...

Dear reader, I’ve decided to intersperse my fiction writing (short stories, snapshot narratives and poetry) posts with some facts about myself... my way of inviting you to get to know me better ‘up close and personal’ (lol). My remit... three key words for each letter of the alphabet... which lead to three brief facts about myself... and, I hope to cover two letters of the alphabet per post (whenever I do post). Hmmmmmm - this should be an interesting journey. It’s so easy to hide behind the liquid interface of cyberspace however in these A-Z Fact Files about yours truly I do intend to keep it ‘real and honest’! Please feel free to share simply read, share your thoughts and/or ask any questions. [For earlier A-Z facts please scroll down... Thank you!]

G:
Glasses. God. Glass half empty.
Glasses... for those of you who haven’t met me in the flesh... well – yes, I do wear glasses. I am short-sighted and therefore need glasses to ‘see’ things clearly at a distance. Despite the fact that I own a relatively trendy pair of spectacles because I can be quite vain I tend to use my ‘trendy’ glasses only to watch television or movies on the big screen – which in a way defeats the ‘trendy’ aspect of the glasses... if you follow my drift (chuckle)! This (refusal to wear my glasses all the time) renders me ‘blind’ most of the time and can be quite problematic. I’ll explain. When people I know catch sight of me on the street and greet me from a distance often I don’t respond because I haven’t recognised their blurred outlines with my weak eyes. Unfortunately, if the person is not directly in front of me all I perceive is a hazy image. This has got me in many a pickle with folk. I have thought about doing the whole contact lens thing and I had an optician slot in a pair for me once to test if I could get on with them. This was about 3 years ago. However, I didn’t enjoy the experience albeit very short lived (I think the contacts lasted about twenty minutes before I insisted that they be removed). Perhaps I didn’t give them enough of a chance but I just can’t imagine subjecting myself to that fiddle every day, even though many of my friends say it gets easier with practice and it soon becomes a real doddle. Another friend of mine has had laser surgery to correct her eyes and she swears by it. Apart from the huge upfront cost involved (although that same friend reminds me... that the upfront cost should be seen as an investment because spectacle wearers, like myself, actually offset that cost in about 4 or 5 years – that is, if you routinely check your eyes and change your eyewear every 2 or 3 years). I’m pretty squeamish about the whole laser treatment thingy – although, apparently, you don’t feel a thing and it’s over before you even know it. Would you believe it that some people have known me for months and years (especially colleagues at work) and would swear that I don’t wear glasses (lol)? God... under my earlier ‘C’ posting – I mentioned that I am a Christian. Having said that - I am realising that the older I get the more uncomfortable I am with the label of being a ‘Christian’ primarily because of all the negative baggage that comes with it (in terms of what others perceive a Christian to be or not). To be honest, I now simply consider myself as someone who believes in God and has a relationship with God. In 2003/4 (before I entered the teaching profession) I went to Redcliffe Bible College and completed a one year course. The reason I mention my time at Bible College at this juncture is because my relationship with God was sorely tested that year. As we were confronted with ‘theology’ - I grappled with my 'personal faith’... trying to make sense of the God of the Old and the New Testament and his relevance in my life, and indeed in today’s world. It’s very strange that I went to Bible College with an extremely narrow perspective on God, that is to say, my view of God was ‘too small’ and ‘quite limiting’. My thought processes were challenged and, if I’m honest, I had a major crisis of faith – to the point of wanting out of the whole Christian lifestyle. Suffice to say, in as much as, my time at Redcliffe was a painful process as I had to sort out the religious clutter - it was a defining year in my life. Though I learnt a great deal about myself and God that year... I confess that I still have very little answers about life... and I continue to struggle in my relationship with God... I always find it hard admitting to my struggles in my faith journey because it seems like a huge failing on my part - but there you have it... Glass half empty... I hate to say this, but it’s true... I am a pessimist by nature. I wish I knew what dictates our temperament in this way... is it genes or environment? I don’t tend to see the positives in situations and can be very melancholic in this regard. But as with many of my character flaws... I am working on it (smile)... I do admire people who are naturally optimistic – I think it makes them relaxed and easygoing... rather than being uptight, moody and intense as I often can be...

H: Hope. Horror Movies. Hmmmmmm.
Hope... is the name of one of my brothers. He is five years younger than I am and is currently completing an MA in International Development from a university in Boston. His interests lies in micro-enterprise in the developing world. There is a reason behind his unusual name (which I hope he won’t mind me sharing). Well, the reason my parents called him 'Hope' is because he was born three months premature in 1976 Israel and there was a high chance that he wouldn’t survive. In fact he lived in an incubator for those first three months of his life. Funny, one of the earliest memories I have as a child is the day he came home from the hospital... and my parents asked if I wanted to hold him. I remember being panic-stricken and absolutely petrified at the idea of holding this strange miniature bundle... I mean to look at him was mind-blogging enough... so I shook my head frantically and hid behind my mother and just stared at the new arrival. Horror Movies... I do not tend to watch horror movies. I think any chance of engaging in this genre was crushed when I watched The Exorcist at a very young age (around 7 or 8 years) and I had nightmares for weeks after that. Hmmmmmm – reflecting on this now as I write this, perhaps this is the source of my fear of the dark (which I talk about in my ‘F’ post under ‘Fear’)... anyway, I’ve watched a handful of horror movies over the years and I don’t enjoy them as they just scare me silly. Hmmmmmm... You may have noticed that I do tend to use this expression a lot in my conversational writing speak and also when I respond to some of your blogs and leave a comment. In my normal speech, I equally use an emphatic ‘hmmmmmm’ quite a lot... to express a plethora of things... (lol)...

6 comments:

Strawberry Girl said...

This is a fun way to intersperse info about yourself into your blog. I like to hear peoples real kinds of thoughts and fears, it makes my own seem a bit more bearable. :0)

paulwchambers said...

christian has much baggage....2000 years of ecclesial abuse.... i was talking with a couple of white witches the other day and described myself as post christian... they understood immediately...

ps hmmmmmm ;)

Dina said...

Shalom again Catherine.
So your brother is a Sabra! What a story of Hope/hope.
I think God would also freak out if he had to sit through theology classes.
Thanks for your visit and comment, to which this is the reply:
You are very generous and gentle in those words. Nice euphemisms for "chaotic balagan." :)
Oi, I still need to post the Anglican School for you. Sorry for the delay.

Khaled KEM said...

A very interesting way of talking about yourself and presenting your thoughts through the alphabet, it is a smart way of writing and I enjoy it.

I do really love the name of your brother Hope. The name exists in other languages and it is a common name.

CathM said...

@Strawberry Girl: I’m glad that you are enjoying these A-Z Fact Files... yes – sometimes sharing our true selves, fears and insecurities - with others does make ‘life’ seem more bearable :)

@Paul: Hmmmmm – I like the idea of being a ‘post Christian’...

@Dina: Shalom! Thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment. Indeed, I’m looking forward to the Anglican School images... and then I can share them with my blogging friends showing them the primary school I attended in Israel... those were great days...

@Khaled: Thank you for your encouraging words. I hadn’t realised that the name was common in other languages... I’m trying to think of the translation of ‘Hope’ in the Igbo lingo but I can’t think of it offhand. But my reference to his name being ‘unusual’ in the English language is simply because I know that it is usually girls who are given the name Hope, I am yet to meet a boy with that name (at least in the English language) – I may be wrong though:)

Lilly Jones said...

Hmmm,

I declare myself a realist -I once read that a realist is an experienced optimist- lol! I always thought you to be an optimist, and Hope too.

Funny how we all remember different things. The day Hope came home... well, all I ever remembered was Carmel looking after us while dad and mom went to the hospital... memory is a funny thing and mine seems fuzzy all of a sudden.

Love always,
LJ

PS. I think "hope" is "oli-lanya" in Igbo and I have definitely mispelled it :)