How do I start the first post of the first thing I have ever written for someone who was not a professor? I guess I’ll tell a story. It’s a great story, full of drama and love and loss and terror…
It’s a story about hide and seek, actually. All good stories are about games in my opinion. No, that’s not true. But this story is pretty much the greatest and the baby (who is now a teenager) will never forgive me for telling it.
When my youngest brother, H, was a toddler he loved to play hide and seek with me. He absolutely LOVED it. There were few days that went by without at least one game, and almost every day included a fake out.
“Ready or not, HERE I COME!!!!! 1…. 2…. 3…” *goes back to reading*
Sorry kid. We all did it. You’ll do it someday too, either for one of your kids or a cousin, or something. You learn to live with the guilt – if you feel any guilt at all.
Anyway, there was one day where H insisted on a game and I complied. I counted for him, and listened to him breathing in the linen closet. He always hid in the linen closet. With the cats. He always hid on the same shelf, too. Every single time, the same shelf, the same closet, the same cats… What am I talking about, the cats moved. It could have been different cats, but there were always cats there.
I finished counting and began my “search”. I knew where he was, and Mum was in the next room listening and folding laundry. (This will become interesting in a minute, I promise.) You can’t play hide and seek with a toddler without a dramatic search monologue, so I began hollering.
“Where could H be? Is he under the bed?”
*Giggles from the linen closet*
“Is he under the pillows?”
*More giggles from the closet*
“Is he behind the shower curtain?”
*Noises from the linen closet become nervous* “I’M IN HERE, BEFF!”
“Is he next to the book case? Where could H BE?!”
It was at this point that the stoic little kid ceased to be stoic.
“I’M IN HERE BEFF!!!!!!” called the sad lost toddler as he began to sob. Mum and I lost it and let out giant belly laughs. That, of course, sent H into a full on hysterical sob-fest as we hauled him out of the closet and consoled him.
While I probably shouldn’t love a story where I made my brother cry, it’s one of my favorite stories to tell. There’s so much to it. He was so upset that I couldn’t find him. He thought he was lost forever, or at least that I thought he was. He wanted to be found so badly that who won the game became irrelevant. Perhaps he thought we both won the game if I found him. Either way he did NOT like thinking he was lost.
Even though H no longer gets upset when we play hide and seek – and no longer asks to play hide and seek at all – I think about him being “lost” all the time. We all feel lost a lot of the time, but we don’t talk about it. It is one of those topics that one only brings up in private. Public image almost has to be one of confidence, so all those worries about not being found and being invisible have to remain out of sight. Maybe it’s one of those rules everyone assumes exists when it actually doesn’t, but the effect is the same. We don’t talk about what worries us or how scared we are about the direction our lives are going. I don’t like that, and I want to change it.
So now you know why I call this blog/diary/thing “I’m Right Here Beff”. It’s because I feel lost a lot of the time, and I have a lot of friends who do too. The 20-something experience is not always fun, and I feel like writing about it. It won’t all be serious though, I promise. If I were serious all the time I’d probably implode and become an accountant. (Nothing against accountants, it’s just a profession that is the polar opposite of my personality. Numbers and things just aren’t for me.)
So tata friends, if anyone is listening. I’ll be back soon.