the wind beneath my fails

I have never considered myself to be a competitive person. I always thought a competitive person was someone that had to win and wasn’t a good sport. I don’t mind losing now and then and I only rarely cry. In fact, if I ever play a game with any of my children, I go into expecting to lose. They are way smarter than I am.

When I was a child, I remember playing Monopoly with my younger siblings. I was always the banker and I always won. Funny, now that I think about it. Whenever I ran out of money, I would just slip some from the banks pile to my pile. Kind of like I do now….except now I do it legally. Don’t panic. I liked playing Monopoly and Payday as a child but not so much anymore.

When I got married, I of course started playing games with my new husband and his family. They played games a bit different than my family did growing up. Not only did I not get to be the ‘banker’, but they had a thing called “strategy” that I did not comprehend. By the end of a game of Monopoly with my new game buddies, I would not only be greatly in debt to at least one, if not two, other players, but I would be on the verge of tears. When we played Scrabble, it wasn’t enough to “get a damn word on the board”, it had to hit some sort of point multiplier to be considered worthy. Not to mention the “challenges” that came to my every other word. Yes, “Pectin” is actually a word, thank you very much.

We moved out of state only days after getting married. Being alone with my new husband and without any other friends, we spent a lot of Sunday nights playing games. We got a book of card games and tried a few, but ended up with Cribbage as our game of choice. We would play for hours every week. After seven months of playing, I finally stopped going to bed in tears and started to win a game here and there. Brad always said he would never “let” me win, cuz what would that teach me?  It makes sense now, but at the time it sure pissed me off.(the losing did anywa

y)I enjoy playing games that bring people together and help them get to know each other and more than anything, make them laugh. I really love laughing and making peop

le laugh.( That being said, I will not pour strange liquids on my head to give people a reason to laugh but I will attempt to be witty now and then.)  These are the kind of games I played with my family growing up. With the exception of Pitt, they were mostly all fun, talking, non serious, non ‘strategy’ games.

Somehow, I have ended up in a house hold of mostly boys, that love to play games of strategy. The upside of this is that they can be occupied nicely for hours on end. The downside is….when they finally talk me into playing with them, it is with the underlying  threat that if I fall asleep too soon they will be angry and never speak to me again. (I have strategy  game induced narcolepsy -its true, look it up)

I still manage to play games I like with the kids now and then. It is usually when other relatives are over and it is more interesting than just me. It might be partly due to threats from me, but the kids seem to have a good time anyway. We have an awful lot of games in our house….we need to have family over more often I guess.

I really think that inspite of my gaming past, I am not really one that should be put into the “competitive hall of fame.” I think I can handle a nice butt whipping if the game is fun enough. (and doesn’t point out my lack of knowledge about geography) I think that I may have some competitive issues in other areas of my life though. I think I am like most every other woman in that I compare myself physically to almost every woman on the planet. We as women are very hard on ourselves. Seriously, if we all had bodies like those airbrushed models in the VS catalogs…would we really be happy? (I would….but only if I could still eat chips and salsa)

I find that my competitive side comes out in subtles ways. I remember, always wanting to play the guitar growing up. I never had a chance. But when I bought Brad a guitar for his birthday one year, I would never touch it. I didn’t want to compete or compare to him. It was his thing. Now that he is gone, I don’t have a problem learning to play. Is it competitive to want to avoid comparisons? There are other examples of this. I wanted to be a

yoga instructor but my sister AND daughter went into that field. I almost never do yoga now. I wanted to be a story teller, but my mom latched onto that so I quit. Now, I am writing my books and dream daily of having an actual published book in my name. What if someone in my family decides to write  a  book too? Will I quit? My track record does not look too good right now. I don’t like to compete because, I feel I will lose. Does that mean I’m competitive? Or does it mean I’m realistic? I don’t really know. All I know is, the best course of action or me may be to never speak to anyone about anything ever again….just to avoid comflict or comparison. Sounds a bit lonely….and without much needed input for my stories….

Guess I better grow up and put my big girl boots on and get over it. From now on, maybe I will just do what I want because I want to do it and the heck with anybody else that wants to copy me. I’ll just think of it as sincere form of flattery and be happy. Good golly Miss Molly….that’s never going to work. Let’s try the Spy Kids approach instead….”stop mimikcing me!”…..cause I said so.

One thought on “the wind beneath my fails

  1. You ARE competitive, but the thing is…you’re great at everything! (Gee, if I’d known you wanted to do storytelling, and didn’t because of me, I certainly wouldn’t have. I thought you just took the class and asked me to do it with you…to have time together. hmmmmmmmm I’m wrong again.)
    You have a gift of writing, storytelling, crafting, music, brains, history, good looks…you have great kids…You’ve got it all, kid!
    I love you.

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