Monday, December 22, 2008

The camera does not lie: it reveals our confidence in our faces

I have gotten fascinated with what the ordinary camera as well as the video camera reveals to us about ourselvs. Now this gawky school girl picture is more like I envision myself when young. Gawky, that was me wearing those granny glasses forever when granny glesses were not in style, but I broke one too many pair so that was my fate. I hardly recognize that glamorous blonde as me. I was very surprised when I saw this photo, but I guess it must really be me, but not a aelf that emerged very often. I remember my mother saying how ugly she always was. I saw a glamorous photo of her when she was about 18 and I hardly recognized her she was so pretty. I get it now. She did not feel pretty.
I have been studying these videos as I describe what it was like to be called fat ass when only a few pounds overweight. When a man tries to kill you you know that you are very ugly in his sight at that moment. I know I was not pretty in my mother's eyes either, as most childen are, at least while they are babies, but I think my mother reflected the feeling of being unloved to her children by not knowing how to love them. Not only did her father not love her but her husband did not love her either. My father's behavior was not that of a loving husband. Mother always said that she saw a lot more love expressed between her mother and dad, and her dad was still hurtful because my grandmother had to worry all the time about other women. Even when she was old lady, not long before he died, she claimed he had a girlfriend he visited all the time.
I find the videos a fascinating study because I can almost see the lack of confidence I have in my looks in how I laugh, in what I concentrate on. I think my looks today reflect the extreme nervousness I suffered when I was a child. My nervous system was being systematically overloaded with the worry and stress my alcoholic father and my predators caused until my health broke down. I think this nervousness remained a defining characteristic because the stress factor did not improve for quite a long time after I was an adult. I think my nervousness even made other people in the family so nervous they would avoid me! Strange.
Now look at Doc in all the videos. He is very calm in comparison. Very urbane and sure of himself. So that's why it is hard for me to understand why he slipped and slid into alcholism. I think maybe it was boredom because he was not really interested in business. He says he wasn't, but his people did not encourage any pursuit of the arts. The German Lutherans would not have thought music and art and acting respectable or practical. Without a bit of support it would have been pretty difficult for him to become an artist, even though he said he painted about 600 big canvases and always owned a piano. I think he had to get homeless before he could take an entirely different path. Being homeless and broke was so traumatic that he began to medicate himself with alcohol.
I tried my best to marry up as far as looks went. My exH's sister was one of the most beautiful women I have seen. He was also considered to be very good looking. But I always thought he had a screw loose from the severe trauma he had experienced when his mother died when he was 4. He did not have an easy life after that, and he and this beautiful sister just older took out their pain on everybody they could. I rmember hearing how his sister attacked her stepmother once and tried to beat her up. I think she scared her to death. I disapproved of how severely she beat her kids, with spatulas and such. I would get very mad at my ex if he punished the kids too severely, and he was never as mean as she was.
But Raymond inherited enough of his good looks, he attracted a great deal of attention.

Look at that kid standing behind his cousin Camille wwo was graduating. Talk about a pretty boy. Because he was so pretty in high school, I always worried about him attracting predators. A good looking child who attracts a lot of attention will cause you to have to guard them as though they were precious diamonds.

Daughter Ronda looks more glamorous here than I was ever able to look in my whole life. Even when she was a baby, people would stop me in the street to ooh and ahh over the beauty of this child. I guess my father did not see me as precious enough jewel to be in danger when I was small, but I always thought Ronda had to be guarded. Her younger brother who was tall proved to be a wonderful guardian angel for her. His looks were less spectacular than Raymond's who was destined to become an actor, but they were plenty good enough to attract attention on the basketball floor. His physical powess was always a magnet to girls. Of course my oldest son Gary was just adorable, too. He has never lacked for attention.

I did succeed in seeing that my kids would never be called ugly, because I know how that hurts, just because you do not have the conventional kind of good looks. My exH was not able to handle my off beat looks when he was drinking. He just said whatever he thought even if it was cruel.

And here is Dan handsome and that precious grandson Dante looking so cooool. He is a teenage heartthrob at 13. His mother is already going mad trying to guard him.


Paula said...

well I don't have time to read all this now as I have to put supper on the table. I will say again I think you were a very pretty young lady and still are.

Lisa said...

I felt sadness while reading this thinking that your mother did not feel you were attractive and how that must have hurt your feelings. You were a lovely young girl and should carry that knowledge with you today.

I wish you a merry christmas Gerry.


Blog Archive