They always say it’s never too late to start something. I started maybe too early.
I learned to read and write before I turned six and, in my enthuzyasm, I read, and read, and read. Every story has added a new layer to my imagination, a new character in my fictional world that is continously transforming. They say I am a geek and, because I read too much, I imagine things, I overreact and give situations ridiculous meanings. It might be true, but this is how I function – by meanings and correlations with my inner persona, built by those fictional characters I keep in my mind. It’s almost like in Salman Rushdie’s “Midnight’s Children”, except the children I communicate to are all my creations, versions of myself.
Scene 1, Take 1: Tricking people into thinking you’re a genius
At the age of two, children are pretty much aware of the surrounding world, but their brain doesn’t actually abstract, it doesn’t perceive the world behind their senses. At the age of two I was pretty much the same as everyone, except I had a grandfather that loved to read me stories and poems. “The Ladybug” has been my favorite from the very beginning and I learned it by heart. I used to recite it and act as if the ladybug was climbing my fingers and I was guiding her on her journey to the Sun. I don’t know what was going on in my mind at that time, while reciting the poem, but everytime I think about it, I see the sun rays creating a golden aura around my friend – the ladybug – and my little child fingers maneuvring it with delicacy.
Of course I didn’t know how to read at two and, I couldn’t actually grasp how the letters combine and form words, but I did know that I could pretend to know how to read. The thing is, my grandpa – who I remember looked exactly like Arnold Schwarzeneger, except he didn’t have red hair – used to follow the words with his index finger, in order to keep track better of the words, at the same time reading them out loud. That is the trick.
I could do the same, because I knew the poem by heart and so, I was able to learn which lyrics are where, where every word belongs on that page, therefore fooling everyone who didn’t know I couldn’t read that I actually could. Very smart, one could say, but why would you brag about it?
Scene 1, Take 2: Tricking things into another order
I don’t brag. I am merely realizind how I started to look for a certain order of things in life. You know, everything has a place on a certain page, every person and situation is located exactly where it should be. Life is one long gradual process, with steps to be followed, just as the ladybug has to climb one finger at a time to get to the sun. I’ve always seen myself as the little girl, guiding and protecting the ladybug, when all of the sudden I realize I am the ladybug.
What I didn’t know was that I can go back one, two or more steps and choose another way, re-order steps. I don’t have keep going on the way that doesn’t make me feel goos, just because I started early. There is still enough time to start all over again and take advantage of the fictional world I created when I was a little girl, guiding the ladybug. And so, I started again, but much later, having the knowledge that the first start gave me. It feels good…