The Thing About Fitting In

Awkward. Left out. Alone. Whatever you want to call it, there is nothing I dislike more than feeling isolated in social settings.

The constant new kid at school struggling to fit in. Always last to be picked out at PE even though I was lethal at hockey. Doing biology and chemistry experiments on my own and only doing joint ventures in woodwork and computing with the boys. I had a sense of belonging there which almost always had me thinking I was liked way more than I was! I was terrible at reading signals. Finishing secondary school caused an insecure feeling of dismay as although awkward, this place was full of kids my age and so, I felt safe and belonged to something.

My subsequent couple of years recovering and rehabilitating from my brain haemorrhage from 1996 onwards was actually enjoyable. Yes. A near fatal, near severely disabling experience was enjoyable. The sensation of round the clock care as part of a group in varying states of neurological deficits caused me to feel yet again safe and belonged to a pretty fucked up team. The ultimate PE team trying our hardest each day with all our gruelling therapies. A couple of us even went out joyriding using one foot to self-propel our wheelchairs in the corridors. So slowly even those with ataxic gaits swiftly overtook us.

Fast forward recovery, voluntary work and a stint at dental nursing, I got a job as a mortician and lab assistant. I’d made it!!! I was suddenly elated, felt important, responsible, needed. Though of course, still unstable and unsure. Yet again I struggled to connect fully with most of the members of staff except three men. The women felt like threats yet again.

Mostly, I was happiest when it was just myself and the strangely assuring hum of the body coolers. I was calm and cracked on with sensitive work I felt honoured to be a part of. A good friend of mine at the time and I used to have a good laugh at every opportunity throughout the day and after finishing. He was likened to a big brother.

My world was destroyed when chronic health problems stole my career path. Why TF has this happened to me now?? Life was testing me. Laughing at me. Throwing my sense of belonging into chaos. Awkward school, annoying brain bleed, weird interlude, hits jackpot and then loses everything.

You’re not the only one“, yeah yeah, nor are you.

Nowadays I have come to the conclusion that my sense of belonging is simply wherever I am. Simple as that. With my husband, family, friends or by myself sat here in McDonald’s.

You and I belong everywhere

Copyright © 2022 Sharon Lawson™ All Rights Reserved

3 thoughts on “The Thing About Fitting In

  1. times of distress
    twice i could not rise without passing out
    heart failure, heart issues
    pacemaker and drugs
    time to decide
    i still wanna be alive
    as for fitting in
    only as the lolly pop
    my dear woman!

    Liked by 1 person

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