Husband and I often joke that if people didn’t know me they would ask the question ‘how can you be gifted?’ They do this for several reasons; I sometimes miss the obvious especially in social situations. It is not unknown for Husband to deliver a deserved prod or a nudge with an elbow or foot if we are out.
I have trouble with my left and right. Family and Friends who have ever driven with me or given me directions know well enough that they need to give me time to look at my hands (left hand makes an ‘L’), or, failing that, say things like ‘turn your way’ at the lights. This inability is inherited from my dad, who is even worse than me if that is possible, and it can lead to many funny and not so funny situations.
Imagine for a moment going to a Pilates class and being given the instruction to ‘stretch out your right hand and left foot’. By the time I’ve figured it out we’ve already swapped and I end up twisted and in knots on the floor, usually wetting myself laughing at just how extraordinarily uncoordinated I am.
Cue end of Pilates class.
I also don’t know my tables well. I am fantastic at maths, got top marks in calculus, trigonometry and geometry, but ask me the answer to 7×8 and I’m stumped. Fortunately I see the patterns and connections between numbers really well so am quite quick at figuring it out, but learning them by rote? Nope, not for me!
I am actually very shy “Yeah right!” I hear people saying. But I am. I find it hard to socialise with large groups of people. This could be down to not having a delightful time at school and creating the idea that people are dangerous, or just that I am not naturally endowed with social graces. It took time and lots of study for me to understand how I am supposed to respond to certain situations and interactions with people. I am an eternal sufferer of Foot-in-Mouth’ syndrome which will frequently leave people asking what the hell was I thinking, and will often put potential new buddies off side.
So, then the question is, how does gifted show up in my life?
- I have to wear seamless socks.
- My friends range in age from 89 to 8, all them close yet all of them provide different things. If one is not there, I am left with a hole, as they are all unique and I cannot simply find another friend to replace them.
- I have empathy with people, often too much and to my detriment.
- I can always see BOTH points of view, and am then left with what feels right and an instinctive level, rather than which way makes sense.
- I cant wear lacy underwear, wool, pajamas or socks with seams in them.
- I am constantly questioning things, and always thinking.
- I yearn for stimulation. If I feel I’m stuck in a rut things change, very quickly. To the point now where Husband has learned to brace himself when I say those magic four words “I have an idea” or the even more scary 3 words; “I’ve been thinking”.
- I must have socks than don’t have a seam in them. I only mention it again as it makes a stupid amount of difference to my comfort factor. Do you know how hard they are to find?!
- I don’t just read a book or watch a movie. I become that particular character, experiencing that particular situation, dealing with that particular problem. This is the result of me hardly ever watching a whole movie the whole way through. Lion king? Fast forwarded through the stampede scene. Forest Gump? Great film, still don’t quite know what happens in Vietnam.
There are more, but that’s enough for today. I was asked yesterday what I would change about myself if I could, and when it comes down to the nitty gritty, I think I’m ok. My life is about the people in it that I have a relationship with; my students, family and friends and being gifted makes me a loyal and caring friend, kind and patient teacher, an energetic and loving wife and a compassionate and empathic human being. Who would want to change that?
Except the socks, would definitely change the socks.