Childish Beliefs and Grown-up Realisations

Finish the Sentence Friday is BACK! Actually, it’s been back for a while – shaken down, restructured and just as awesome as ever. But I wasn’t ready to be back yet. Now I am. I hope.

Here goes!


When I was a kid, I really believed that…

…to be fair, when I was a kid (and different stages of kid, at that) I believed an awful lot of silly-funny things. I’ll run you through a few, so you have an idea (I’ve written about them before, but you’ll have to hunt if you want a fuller story because they aren’t the point):

  • That if I dug far enough in the vegetable patch, I’d get to Australia.
  • That my super-snazzy new trainers would allow me to hop lightly onto the point of a nail and leap gracefully off.
  • That toilets were the enemy, apart from the mostly-safe one at home.
  • That there was a monster under my bed who was only there when I got out to use the bathroom in the middle of the night
  • That my best friends were the ones I made up.

This was probably before I started believing anything; in that time of life when you just *live*, and however things are, seems okay.

Fortunately with time and maturity, I’ve come to see the folly of my ways, and have amended my thinking. Geography would lead me to believe that if I dug straight through the world (with my little spade), I would hit China, not Oz. Experience suggests that dumb ideas involving jumping on pointy things ends in hospital. Common sense and distance from toilet-trauma lead me to believe that toilets don’t tend to take vendettas. I’m far too tired to bother about monsters under the bed any more, and would probably welcome the excuse in the morning – “Sorry, I can’t make it to Real Life today – I went to pee in the middle of the night, and was eaten by a monster on the way back to bed”.

The bit about made-up friends though…that was real for a long time.

Because I also ended up coming to believe a lot of silly not-so-good things – things to do with low-worth and no-value and not-deserving, and those things have been the ones which have stuck, and which my adult self still struggles with. The timing on this prompt made me smile, in fact, because only today I suddenly had the thought that part of me might be trapped back there – in the land of childhood and fear and ostracising- and for whatever reason, I’ve not been able to get past it.

Which leaves me very uncertain, particularly as pertains to friendships, because these were magical things the circumstances of my childhood denied. One way and another, the instances where I was able to interact with other kids (outside of school, at least) were severely restricted. I didn’t bond with the kids at school either, and a new belief settled in – that I wasn’t worth being friends with. And it stuck – it’s always in the back of my mind, with each new friend I make, and most interactions with the extant ones: that one day they’ll see whatever terrible things made me so very unlikeable as a child, will realise their mistake, and will leave.

The amassed detritus of failed attempts at friendship as a kid often sneaks up on me and tangles me into its gnarled, rusting wreckage. I worry about being a burden or a nuisance. I fear that my input is unwanted, unhelpful and not anything someone else couldn’t have said or done better. I do nice things because I care, and then suddenly wonder whether it just comes across as though I’m trying to buy friendship. I get anxious and jealous and possessive (though I rarely act on those) and entirely unnecessary about the whole thing. And one way or another, I convince myself that I’m a bad friend.

I *know* that I’m not, though and I realised this because there is evidence to the contrary (no matter how much I question it or struggle to *feel* that it counts) and the proof is in the incredible, amazing people who have chosen to be friends with me.

Like my Soulie – my best friend in the world, who decided, at 17, that she and I belong (we do).

Like my oldest work-friend – who made the transition from colleague to pal, and with whom I laugh and spend time enjoying life simply.

And like a lot of wonderful people here in the Blogosphere; where friendships can sometimes be more easily managed, and like souls can meet and form bonds without a requirement to manage the physical meeting up and in-your-face-ness of friendship. And the beauty is that once the seeds of friendship online have been sown, they can be strengthened by things like Skype and WhatsApp, until the physical meeting and chance to hug is the only thing left undone.

I have several very dear Blogosphere friends who have been with me through thick and thin, and who have done me the honour of keeping me around when they have been through good times and bad. I even got the opportunity to finally meet one, earlier this year, and it was wonderful (and yes, I totally overthought the whole thing, but I did get a hug…and we’re still friends).

Today, though, I’d like to take the opportunity to celebrate a Blogosphere friend who is very important to me. She claims favourite, even, whenever the matter is raised. I don’t know why she chose to be my friend, but I’m super-glad she did. She writes stunningly well, and that was one of the first things I loved – she has a way of putting things so that they seem to shimmer from the screen and straight into the dead-centre of your heart. As I got to know her, I discovered an awesome sense of humour, a passion for making the world a better place, some ‘stupid drawings’ and a HUGE heart for other people – she doesn’t even mind getting wet for charity.

There have been moments where we’ve laughed uproariously together at bad jokes (if you meet her, get her to show you the one about the builders). There have been times when we’ve shared soul-deep ponderings. She’s shared amazing things (like an audition piece for a blogging show (she got the gig, Of course). When I was in a pit of grief and despair, she was there and took time from her day to calm me down. She is absolutely determined that I should never say never. We’ve each shared worries and allayed one another’s fears. We’ve each taken time to boost one another’s spirits with emails or messages or real-life things in the mail. She leaves me awesome, beautifully thought-out comments in response to the important blog posts, and snarky comments full of vim and swearwords in response to the ones which don’t matter. And each time we pick up where we left off, I am thankful beyond description that we are friends.

i adore her.

It’s also her birthday. And as birthdays are scientifically proven to be GOOD for you*, I hope that you’ll join me in wishing this lovely, beautiful, incredible, wonderful friend of mine a very happy day.

Because you probably already know her, and can nod your head, knowing that each and every good thing said about her is completely accurate.

Happy Birthday, Kristi πŸ™‚ ❀


Other bloggers love her so much they have to show their affection the best way they know how…


*The more of them you have, the longer you live. It’s undeniably true.



51 thoughts on “Childish Beliefs and Grown-up Realisations

  1. Cheers to our mutual friend, Kristi. And I ADORE that picture. As a child, and even as a teenager- I really never felt completely comfortable in my skin, or that I truly fit in. I think it might not have sank in until my 30s, and even now I still have my doubts… That was lovely!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Of the pics I’ve seen of BlogHer, that’s one of my favourites πŸ˜€ The three of you just look SO happy (who *is* the other lady there, btw?)

      I hope you feel you fit here, in the Blogosphere, where I suspect we’re all a bit odds’n’endsy πŸ˜‰


  2. I LOVE, love, love your beliefs as a child and that you’re able to remember and capture them so vividly. I would recognize that smile anywhere, and it breaks my heart that this little girl carried so much pain inside her, but reading this post is comforting. I see it as a kind of a letter from now you to child you. Virtual friendships to me are as real as IRL relationships. Maybe even more real when they happen in the blogosphere, since so many of us bare our souls for everyone to visit, something – I suspect – we do much less of in real life. The multiple friendships you created are a testament to child you of her great worth. And how could I not love the tribute to wonderful Kristi? πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • I had a similar conversation elsewhere this week – I can hardly deny the strength of friendships, and that they require two people to make, without being rather rude about the decisions of my friends to be friends with me, if that makes any sense at all…

      But yes – the Blogosphere does rather afford a more immediate level of intimacy than would be afforded a person In Real Life.

      And I am fascinated by your ‘letter’ comment, because I always swore I’d never do one of those. But then, I have some compassion within me for very-little-girl me, whereas I have only contempt and disgust for the older child and especially the teen incarnations.

      I’m glad the smile has remained the same πŸ™‚


      • I get it, the letter is kind of a cliche and I don’t think I’ve ever attempted coming up with one, but for some reason I thought about here. Maybe because looking at that picture made me, personally, so want to offer some words of reassurance to that little girl πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

        • *she* was alright – looking at that, I was probably only four or five. Things were alright then. Then seven hit and everything went to shit. But YOU my friend, are a sweetheart.

          And to be fair, because of the way life works and the stepping stones which consist our past as it brings us through whatever to get us to this moment RightHere…I guess I’ll take it (grudgingly, because lots of it sucked) because actually, the people I know now are FABULOUS, and some of the present is pretty alright.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. β€œSorry, I can’t make it to Real Life today – I went to pee in the middle of the night, and was eaten by a monster on the way back to bed”

    I’m SO going to use this excuse this week! Don’t know how yet, but it’s on my list!

    And I’m echoing your thoughts on FTSF. This is also the first hop that I joined when I started blogging, after getting an invite from (you guessed it) Kristi. So I’m also a big fan of hers, and also of FTSF.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Of course there was a monster under your bed. I had witches under mine, actually rather than a monster- monster.
    And it’s true you can dig to Australia. The kids in my novel do it, and I wouldn’t have put it if it wasn’t true! Though we were always going to dig a tunnel to America, seeing as we looked out over the Atlantic.

    And more seriously, regarding feeling stuck “in the land of childhood and fear and ostracising” – I think most people feel that way sometimes. It’s sort of human nature to not feel good enough – no, not nature but conditioning. Although somewhere I read that because we are spiritual beings having a human existence we do always feel “not enough” – humanness being limited and spirit not. I can see the point.
    Whatever – you, me, all of us, we are enough. As we are.
    And I agree that Kristi is wonderful!
    Hope you have a great weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kristi had witches, too! I wonder where we get these odd ideas!

      GOOD! I’m glad it’s Australia. I always wanted to dig there. That said, being able to dig a tunnel to America would be AWESOME, and would save me a lot of air-fares next year.

      I never thought of it that way – that our own limitations would have that much impact…I just figured I never managed to mature past that point of being an annoying kid. Have you read Katia’s post yet (thinking of spirit and stuff) – it’s incredible πŸ™‚

      And we are all something, as we are.

      Kristi is something VERY wonderfulspecialawesome πŸ™‚

      Hope you have a good weekend too.


  5. LOL, I seem to remember the bit about Australia and the toilet in the middle of the night. My thought was that I could dig to China, not sure how far I am off with the geography either. Hold on, I’m going to look – yep China! Sorry you had that experience with IRL friendship. I’m still nostalgic for the camaraderie I had with kids in the neighborhood when I was young. I didn’t experience anything so difficult until high school but fortunately it didn’t last forever. I’m enjoying my blog friends and have had the opportunity to meet a few which is always exciting.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is one of the desires of my heart to meet more blog friends, and next year I am GOING TO! Goodness me but I hope it all works out! I’m glad you had such fun meeting yours πŸ™‚

      Sorry you had a hard time in high school. Does *anyone* go through those years unscathed, do you think?

      And yes – China. Same as here, apparently. Guess China’s pretty big…


  6. OMg…I just love your silly myths esp the australia thingie. Lizzy you are smart and goofy at the same time…you know I adore you for that…xoxo

    yes, happy birthday to kristi and what a pix…it’s priceless πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

    • Heheh I don’t know WHERE I got those ideas from – they just got incredibly stuck into my head! I’m good at goofy, and occasionally I temper it with a bit of intelligence πŸ™‚ Thanks.

      I LOVE that pic of Kristi. I only know one of the other bloggers, but it’s an AMAZING pic, isn’t it? πŸ™‚


  7. I had a hard time with friendships, too. Still do. I’m timid and always think I’m bothering people. Anyway, I relate.
    Also, Kristi is amazing and the best. Absolutely love her, and so glad I got to meet her in person. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • OHMIGOSH! That’s *precisely* how I feel – bothersome. Like an intrusive nuisance. ACKKK! I so, so, so very get that. Isn’t it horrible to feel that way? 😦

      Kristi is AWESOME and I still maintain that the ONLY reason I’m envious of anyone getting to go to BlogHer that wasn’t me, is because of the amazing people you all got to meet. I would have LOVED that. But not so much the conferences etc.


  8. I’m glad you found so many great friends in the blogosphere, and I’m a huge fan of Kristi. Before I started blogging when people were starting to connect online, I had a hard time with the kids. I had a newborn and a toddler, and I was losing my mind. The people I met then were not that kind. But I managed to find some good ones along the way, and what I love the most about the Finish the Sentence Friday crew are the good hearts you find in this group. I have no idea why you would have any level of insecurities about the type of friend you are because from my perspective, you’re the type of friend most people covet.

    Liked by 1 person

    • There are some AWESOME people on FTSF – it was the first blog hop I joined when I started out as a blogger, and I loved it from the start. The people are all FOR one another, and that’s a really special thing, I think. It made a HUGE difference in my online world, and I met some incredible people (Kristi amongst them).

      I’m glad you found nice people to help you through those tough times. Isolation and feeling alone can be so hard, no matter what the situation. And online, there’s pretty much always someone around πŸ™‚

      Glad you’re a fan of Kristi πŸ˜€ And thanks for sharing such a nice perspective of me. I try to be a good friend. I think I mostly pull it off πŸ™‚


  9. Oh Lizzi, I am so glad to have met you here. You are a sweet and kind soul with a generous spirit. Your love of the people in your life is such a beautiful thing. Now I need to go to this blog and poke around. I’ve heard the name and seen her around but I’ve only read a little of her. And any friend of Lizzi’s must be pretty amazing…

    Liked by 1 person

    • You won’t regret it, Gretchen – she’s AWESOME πŸ˜€ Truly. I could go on and on and onandon anon…

      I won’t – I’ll let you find out for yourself πŸ™‚

      I’m glad to have met you, too – I have Samara to thank for that, and I am indebted to her, truly, for sending me to your blog to ‘discover’ you, and learn about how lovely you are and what a fabulous mind you have πŸ™‚

      And thanks for saying nice things. Loving my friends is one thing I KNOW I’m good at…


  10. You’re amazing in a gazillion ways and you’ll just have to take my word for it. I don’t lie. Not even to make people feel better. It’s probably a character flaw…but, whatever. That’s all.

    Kristi is another awesome soul out here. I’m glad you both have each other. Love her to pieces and I hope she has a wonderful birthday. I’m sure these lovely things you wrote about/to her were a super gift!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think she was happy πŸ™‚ I like that I can do that, at least πŸ™‚ She’s incredible, and a huge force for good in The World, and in my world.

      That said, my DA, so are you, and even Kristi hasn’t spent the night with me πŸ˜‰ β™‘ #kissingthefrog

      (And I know. You have no reason to bs me. Thank you xo)


    • Thanks Allie πŸ™‚ Kristi’s just fabulous πŸ˜€ I couldn’t cram in all the things I wanted to say, but I know a great many people who hold her in equally high esteem πŸ™‚

      Here’s hoping one of your friends takes it to their heads to do something similar for you πŸ™‚


  11. Say what? You don’t get to Australia if you dig a hole deep enough …… πŸ˜‰

    very well written post – and congrats to your friend on her birthday.

    As a child I was terribly withdrawn and also did not make many friends. I was the werdo the odd one out. I had basically one friend and our friendship just kinda fell apart 5 years ago.

    Now that I have started blogging i have made some friends online, which is – I can’t even explain it – friends are needed in life.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Friends are very necessary, I absolutely agree. And I’m *so* with you on being the odd, weird, left-out one, and how much that sucks. Thank goodness for the blogosphere, eh? πŸ™‚

      And nope. From England you hit China. You wouldn’t though…where would you end up?


  12. So you think the monster would eat us AFTER we peed then? Do you think they hate urine or what’s up with that? You’d be less awake, technically, right out of bed and on your way, but I guess if they hate pee that much then maybe that makes sense. Also, to think that you’re anything but awesome is not awesome. I’m a sort of real life friend, even though it’s online, and I assure you that I’m better than anything you could make up in your head to be a friend, even it if had three breasts and was really neat. I’m still better.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think you found a new t-shirt slogan: “Don – better than your neatest, imaginary, three-breasted friend” (can you *imagine* how difficult it would be to buy bras? (I shouldn’t say that – you might get stuck in the imaginary lingerie section (WHY would an imaginary friend of mine have three breasts? (what would they be, anyway? Hot, cold and custard?))))

      Kristi is awesome πŸ™‚ You have a great BlogWife there πŸ™‚ (and thinking not-awesome is never awesome…blech!)

      I think maybe it’s to do with speed. Exiting bed when the pee has built up sufficiently to wake you up (for me anyway) means you leave rather QUICKLY! And then kind of meander back. And you’re tireder then, and thinking of your pillow, so…THAT’S when they pounce.


  13. Oh my God omgOMG. Lizzi. I’m bawling. I should’ve listened to your “readmine” earlier but am also glad that I didn’t because no way no way no way would I have been able to write anything at all after reading this. I cannot tell you how much I love and adore you (well, I try to tell you at least, I hope??, between bouts of yelling and maybe comforting and being an overall douche on IM).
    I don’t really know what to say (and realize that you leaving me speechless is probably a good thing right?) and well, so just gonna ramble now, m’kay?
    Your babygirl photo, with that silly little unknown what’s next grin? Beautiful, and perfect, and if the way it looks is the way it was, our goal is to get that back for you. To get that back for all of us, and for everybody.
    You’re the bestest most amazing friend and PLEASE tell those dickhead voices in your head to shutthefuckup. Who remembers stuff? Who is STILL TO THIS DAY, a pen pall when most of us forget? Who? YOU. Who has the words to change the world? You. Also please – here’s my bday present – be NICER in your head, to you. Please? Tomorrow, when you’re thinking about life and birthdays and children and happiness and sadness and alloftheness, be nice to YOU. For me. Deal? Please?
    I think I might be rambling because for one – I’m blown away that you made a whole post for me (and again, am humbled and honored and surprised and crying) and two. Um, there was a two. Please just share my brain again and know what it was, like you have such a gift of doing. I love you. And thank you so very much for this. I cannot express how touched I am. Which sounds dumb. But you know – get into my Clark head m’kay? ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Awwwwwh πŸ™‚ GOOD! I’m glad you like this so much. I did have a moment of panic about it, in case you weren’t keen on the spotlight, but you wrote about it on FB so I figured it was alright, and breathed rather a sigh of relief.

      I’m grinning a HUGEsilly grin right now, and it’s rather a wonderful way to start my day. I’m so happy to know you, and it was lovely writing all those completelyverytrue things about you. And if I think hard, I know that people can write nice, true things about me, and all I do is struggle to believe them, but that doesn’t make them less true, yaknow? So if you have any kind of a clarkbrain moment over this, then there’s that.

      Probably just as well you didn’t read this when I clamoured, if you were gonna go all to pieces πŸ˜€ I do love you to smithereens and I’ll try very hard to do the birthday present deal for you today. What I’ll do is think about you and other amazing friends of mine, and will focus on the things *they* think are true of me. And ignore my silly self πŸ™‚

      Feel free to ramble whenever. I love the rambles. And I don’t even mind the yelling and snark (and you’re not a douche – sometimes you might act like one – there’s a difference. And I do the same), cos I know you only do it cos you care about whichever thing it is that’s gotten on your nerves at that point. And we make up after, don’t we πŸ™‚

      #2 probably had to do with Kismet or something πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m so very happy to know YOU. And I promise, all of the nice things people say about you are absolutely true, 100% and more. They’re still true, even if they’re hard to believe. Believe. Just do it. I just read through everybody’s comments (Tucker woke up at midnight and I went in and ended up falling asleep until 3am and so didn’t make as many rounds last night as planned) and wow. You make magic happen right here. That you’d dedicate a post to me still completely blows me away and is definitely the best birthday gift I’ve ever gotten. Ever. Seriously. xxoo thank you.
        Total Kismet! The under the bed thing!!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Well I’m impressed that we managed to do it. Again. It made me smile SO much when I read yours. And even though you REFUSED to come here first, I thought to myself “Ah well, didn’t stop her being in my brain, did it?”

          And of COURSE I would! Gosh, this place is my playground, right? I’ve spent a long time building up my community and making friends here and writing goofy stuff for people who matter, and YOU MATTER to me. So of COURSE I would do this, and am so happy to! Consider yourself chalked all over the walls. As it were πŸ™‚

          I’ve spent the day trying to believe. I’ve spent the day thinking about my wonderful friends and how kind and awesome they are, and that there’s no WAY they all have bad taste in the people they choose for their friend, which means they see good in me, even when I don’t. But THIS…this celebration of the important, amazing people, *that* is something I CAN do. And I know that. So yeah – I can do good things πŸ™‚

          (also, I have gone to NO ONE and I still have a TToT to write and HTML to send and WOW! Gonna be a busy bloggy night!

          Liked by 1 person

          • There truly is no way that all of the awesome people who love you are wrong. No. Fecking. Way. (did you like my Irish accent there?)
            So glad you spent the day trying. And had happy lovely grins. Oh! Did you get my whatchacall it message thing? I always forget to check it… xxoo

            Liked by 1 person

            • Yes I did, and TWO MINUTES LATER I sent you one back. Which you didn’t check :p

              I loved your Irish accent. It’s about as good as mine is πŸ˜€ And no – I’m coming round to that idea – gotta give my friends some credit where it’s due, and if it applies to me, as well as to their other choices of friends, then I guess I better pay attention to that or I risk pissing them off. It’s a fine line to walk.


  14. I pray that someday you really and truly know how wonderful you are. Without doubt or question.

    I can’t tell you how happy I was to see the link to the post about our visit. I went and reread it and relived it all over. It really was a marvelous time. It almost seems like it was a dream, probably because it was such a quick visit. Someday I’ll get there and we can spend more time together. And this time I won’t have that odd conversation when people ask who I’m visiting, where they question my sanity for staying with someone I never met before. πŸ™‚

    Why didn’t I get notification from FB about Kristi’s birthday?!? Arg.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I didn’t get one either. I’ve got a word document with all your birthdays in…wait, that makes me sound really stalkerish – I promise I’m NOT! It’s just I don’t trust facebook, and I know people sometimes don’t like to have the date ‘out there’ so as and when I’ve discovered people’s birthdays, I’ve just noted them down and…*shuts up*

      I’m glad you enjoyed re-reading it. Next time we meet, I promise to over-think it all less, and just ENJOY IT without the inner-dialogue and second-guessing. And it’ll be brilliant. I also haven’t forgotten I owe you a mowed lawn πŸ™‚ It’s interesting – very few people have questioned my sanity for going to ‘Murica to meet a whole BUNCH of people I ‘don’t know’…I haven’t said y’all are ‘from the internet’ though πŸ˜‰

      It would be a nice thing to know. Some days it’s an easier concept than others πŸ™‚


  15. Let’s get one thing straight: there IS a monster under the bed. That is why, no matter how hot it is, you must keep at least a sheet over you when you’re in bed at night. And never, under any circumstances, let a body part hang off the edge of the bed, because it will surely be eaten. And when you get up to pee in the night, you have to swing your legs off the bed and land at least a foot from the bed, so the monster doesn’t grab you by the ankles and pull you under.

    Oh, Happy Birthday, Kristi! Sweet dreams! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

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