Funny how I went to quite a bit in my life [i may tell the tale at one point. It's not that exciting or even that traumatic comparatively, but anyway...], but the most defining moments, the one that change my perception of life or who I was are sometimes uneventful. Anyway, here goes.
1. When I was 7, my friend S scratch a neighbour's car with a file and I was punished for it too.
When I was a kid, I was a very good kid. Never did anything to upset my parents, was never really in trouble. But one day, I was hanging out with another kid on my street. This boy who was a bit hyperactive...Anyway, he got a metal file for some reason, out of his dad's tool box in the garage and I was following him around the neighbourhood, a bit bored. He was experimenting filling stuff: rocks, telephone poles, whatever. At one point, he went to his next door neighbour's garage entrance and started filing the bottom of their old ugly, rusty yellow car. In my 7 year's old head, I knew it was not a good idea. I recall saying something like "let's get out of here, no stop!" or whatever but he continued...Of course, the wife of this neighbour came to the window and saw us next to the car and yelled, as she did. She was a stupid woman. But regardless, buddy bolted out of there and hid. I knew this wasn't good but didn't think it was such a big deal. I stood there for a while, in disbelief at what just took place. I wanted to talked to the woman and tell her that I tried to stopped him, but I couldn't as she kept on yelling a me, calling me names and telling me how I was going to have to pay for this... I walked ran away, numb and sad. I went to hide for a bit as she scared the sh* out of me...
When I came home at the end of the afternoon, my mom and dad were waiting for me with grim expressions on their faces. My mom explained that the neighbour was really irate. Well, this was apparent as she was treating my parents of every which names calling them irresponsible parents, and calling us, me and the boy idiots and other names I can't recall. My parents were standing there, listening to this abuse. Anyway, I couldn't hear too much what was going on... Something about paying for the repairs. My little brother was standing there too, just being quiet, as he did.
I didn't understand why this woman was lashing out so violently at my parents, and didn't understand what she was doing at our place, as opposed to the boy's place, since I didn't even touch the bloody file myself. I thought to myself: I didn't do anything wrong...In fact, I tried to stop the boy from doing what he was doing...
Anyway, that night, my mom explained that even though I didn't do it I was 'guilty by association' and had to be punished. I was stunned. My mom took all the money I had in my piggy bank [which was probably like 50 bucks or something insignificant] and she said that we were going to go to the neighbour and that I would apologize and give her my all money to pay for the repairs. We did, which made me feel a combination of disgust at this woman [because she was still abusive continuing saying 'you should be ashamed of yourself, you get what you deserve' as I was apologizing...], unfairness towards me, and humiliation.
Anyway, what I remember thinking about a lot was the fact that all my hard saved and urned money was gone and that I was set way back compared to my little brother! I remember crying that night and feeling that my trust for the world got weakened even more. I felt that my parents were weak and didn't do anything to protect me, instead, they stood there taking abuse from this silly woman. I remember stating my case to my mom again and her saying "I know. This car is old and rusty and this woman unreasonable but you still was there..."
Funny how I thought to myself these several twisted things:
-My parents are weak and unable to stand up for me, or themselves, or to protect me from other's abuse.
-Even if I am good, try my best to do the right thing, I will not see the fruit of this effort and have to pay for others' mistakes.
-I am perceived as a bad little kid compared to my little saint of a brother, and now, at five, he already had the same amount of money in his bank then I, even though I should technically have more since I am the elder...[but, for the sake of 'fairness' he always got the same amount...]
-Now he has more money then I and I will never be able to have more then him.
Talk about a self fulfilling prophesy. This money thing always bothered me since then as I noticed that my brother always got more then I. Even to this day... By the choice he and my parents made and by chance. I always have felt until recently that I was never going to make good money. And I have often sold myself short because of fear that I wasn't worth that much and would be punished one way or another.
Now, I know it's untrue, that I am smart and have earned good money. But constantly being less successful then my little brother always troubled me. Even though I know that, for one reason or another, both my parents unconsciously chose to support my brother more then I on many, many levels, I have to get rid of this idea that it is because I am not worthwhile. It is only recently that mostly my dad, admitted that he supported my brother financially more then I because it was easier for him. Now, were not talking riches here. It's just that my brother lived with my dad, which made a bit more money. I live with mom who could make ends meet because she was a hard working conscientious woman, but had no extra money to support me as a teen-early adult. Meanwhile, My dad payed my brother for chores around his house...chores that had to be slaved at for free when I was living there. He paid more for my brother's college and uni, as I guess my brother failed some courses as he concentrated less on his studied then I, and I was out of sight, not asking for anything from him as I didn't want to have anything to owe him ever. He paid for new road bikes and other paraphernalia for my brother because my dad justified that he could use the bike, the roof rack, trainer, camera, etc, etc. It made him feel young and in the scene to have that with my brother...
Anyway. It may seem like whining. sure. As I never lacked food on the table. I always provided for myself, my food, my schooling, my clothes. It just bugs me that I wasn't able to see how much I did for myself, how capable I was all this time. But also, how I could felt the unfairness, and was frustrated without seeing a solution for myself, and concentrated on that, and the fact that my parents always denied it. But instead of standing up to the challenge, I chose to think that it was either just my bad luck, my poor choices, but most importantly, I chose to think that it was my inherent unworthiness. That I wasn't as smart. That I didn't deserve more and somehow couldn't see how I could get more. I worked just as hard, and got less. Just like my mom.