I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting lately, I mean, a whole lot; thinking about who I am and how I got to be this way. I think of my childhood, my upbringing. My parents. I’m a pretty open person except when it comes to my parents, mostly because, despite everything, I don’t want to disrespect them. For years I’ve played with the idea of writing a memoir, but it wouldn’t be real, it wouldn’t be accurate and raw, unless I spoke my whole truth. And that included opening up about my parents. So I always decided against it. My mother would never forgive me if people knew of the skeletons in our family closet; that the picture wasn’t/isn’t quite as pretty as it seems.
Blogging here and there about certain things seems safe enough.
Today I’m going to talk about yet another thing I don’t like discuss. My difficulty with speaking. Let me must tell you, having people constantly saying, “huh?” “What?” “I don’t understand you.” is not fun. It’s pretty awful actually. When I was really young, I didnt really notice it, spent pretty much the entire first twelve years of my life only around my immediate family members. And as a result, I didn’t much have a sense of self, no real sense of autonomy. I wasn’t much aware of myself as an individual, which included the way I looked and the way I spoke. At least not when around my siblings, who were almost exclusively to whome I spoke. And around everyone else, I was shy, painfully shy.
I wish I’d gotten a speech therapist as a child. But I guess mother saying, “Quit mubbling!” Was all the therapy she thought I needed.
Oh, let me back up for a second for those who don’t actually know my life! I was homeschooled till I was 12. When I was 12, my family moved to Trinidad (another story for another day) and thats when everything changed. That’s when I started gaining self awareness, and that’s when I noticed I had a problem. At first I thought my shyness and social anxiety played a part. Making it impossibly difficult to get words out. But when I did get them out, it was oftentimes gibberish, or so slurred it was unintelligible. And when classmates and teachers would repeatedly not understand me, I told myself that it was my American accent that they couldn’t understand. But the thing is, I couldn’t understand what was coming out of my mouth either. I knew what I intended to say, but wouldn’t come out right. There is a term so lovingly referred to as marble mouth, as in, sounding as if you’re speaking with a mouth full of marbles. That’s me!
Whenever I try to slow down and speak more clearly, I stutter. When I record myself on snapchat or instagram, sometimes I have to record myself at least three times until I’m understandable. I know there are a lot of people out there who would say it’s not that bad or that i just talk too fast. But for me, it is that bad. It makes be feel stupid, make me feel like a moron. It’s ironic isn’t it, that I have so much to say but faulter in my speech. . .