that’s how (eye roll)

Sometimes I like to dredge up old memories and tell myself what an idiot I was, or how cringe-worthy my actions were.

It starts out well enough, like remembering about when I played little league baseball. I really enjoyed that, and everything made sense inside the lines. I wasn’t very good, but it gave me something to think about besides having a shit life at home.

Then my train of thought heads down a dead end siding, and I arrived at a different baseball memory.

I went to a friend’s brother’s little league game one night. I may have been 13 at the time, before the time when I realized people were making fun of my eccentricities. I might have been having an early-onset manic episode, because I remember feeling uninhibited, mischievous, and ready to have fun.

Somehow my friend and I got into the booth above the field our town’s little league stadium, and somehow the public address audio equipment had been left turned on. I decided to live out one of my fantasies, which was to be a sports announcer just like on the Giants games I listened to on the radio (“KNBR The Sports Leader!”). So I locked the door and started calling the game just like the pros, announcing the players and describing the action. That lasted for about 10 minutes until someone finally located the key to the booth, and my friend and I were escorted out.

For most people, that would be a harmless prank, and everyone would move on. For me, after the manic episode abruptly ended, I was left with the embarrassment of people I knew finding out about my aborted sports broadcasting career. My adoptive mom was furious when she found out, blowing the incident way out of proportion, because I was supposed to be a perfect kid and not cause her any trouble. A couple of the adult men at church teased me, calling me “sports guy” for weeks afterward. I felt completely ashamed that I did something out of character and “against the rules”. I felt so stupid at the time because I did something that the “normal” kids wouldn’t do.

Thinking back on this episode, I can see how this was one of many examples where my bipolar impulsivity got me into an embarrassing situation. I should have been able to shake it off and move on, forgetting about it like most people would, or laugh it off as a dumb mistake. But because of my experience and personality, I internalized the shame, and it remains there today.

Memories, inner critic, shame. That’s how I roll.


3 thoughts on “that’s how (eye roll)

  1. anne

    My take: this was sweet, hilarious, and a beautiful example of simply being a child. I think it’s awesome. I hope you are able to shake off the bad associations, at least to some extent. *hug*

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