>’not really’… really?

9 May

>With a recent trip to France mainland I found that talking to people in French is getting a bit easier. I’ve decided – possibly for the sake of sanity – that the stuff I don’t understand is probably best not understood. You cut out a lot of crap, actually, when you don’t entirely understand or speak a language. Things are right to the point, since you don’t really have much more than what you need…not much small talk or embellishment available in the ol’ repertoire.

What leaves me speechless, in addition to actually not having the words, are the things people say sometimes. ‘Not Really’ seems to be a common theme in people’s perception of my life. Let me give some examples…

I’ve spoken to many people about the subject of adoption. This conversation begins in many different ways. It can start with where I’ve lived – San Francisco, and move from there to the gay community and how people feel about gay rights, including adopting children. Discussion around this may go on for a while before I say that I was adopted, at which point, inevitably, I get the same response, perhaps varying a bit from person to person: “Oh, sorry, I didn’t know…well, I mean, you know what I mean, because they’re not really your parents” and “Oh…well yeah, then you know what I mean, it’s like, you’re not really Jewish”.
Here, I tend to try to make small talk with people around things I can easily talk about in French. So, family is easy. I’m a step mother. Voila. “Uh-huh”, they say, “And so now you want to have one of your own, right?”, or “Ah…yes, I see, and so you’ll really understand how beautiful it is when the child is yours, because it’s (normally they take a look around and lower their voice) it’s …different…when they’re not really yours“.
Yeah. Who are they looking around for, I wonder, someone not to offend? Intriguing.
It’s presumptuous, at best, to say these things, especially when preceded by ‘you know what I mean’. Actually, no, I don’t. But I can infer. I can infer that you are lacking a certain amount of sensitivity or openness that I am happy to possess.

So, it kind of piled up in my head the other day, all this ‘not really’ business. If I were less happy with the family I have (all of it, my folks, extended, ma petite famille Guadeloupean, my friends) well then I might get really bogged down by the thoughts that ‘not really’ comments create. Actually I just find it really intriguing to be honest.
I mean, look at it this way, what if I believed what so many people said…what would be my place in the world? If I were…
Not really my parents daughter.
Not really Jewish.
Not really connected to the two little boys in my life, les monstres?

Where would I be then? Floating in not really land? Not connected to anything or anyone by strong ties that bind? Relatively identity-less? Pffff
Good thing I can look at it differently, eh? I’m a free agent. It’s not the questioners or the clear-cut mold needers who decide who I belong with or to. Mais non, c’est moi.

In fact, I feel a bit sad for people who can’t see past the connection of blood when it comes to deep love or spirituality, I really do. it’s just, I wonder if they’re happy that way, or not really.


One Response to “>’not really’… really?”

  1. Jay May 18, 2010 at 23:54 #

    >Hi,my name is Jack. I arrived a year ago on this paradise island. And like you I have been stuggling to get all settled up. And it's still not like i wished. so far that i lost the battle against guadeloupe. I'm really thinking of leaving soon. unfortunatly. Something that people always say is:stop compare guadeloupe with where you came from.and be patient.Two very hard things. as i used to live in holland. yeah indeed Holland. and i'm not a very patient person. so guadeloupe was hard to mee. and not forget the 44days of strike.maybe we can stay in touch and get rid of all the negative vibes through you blog. cheers, and keep up the good fightJack

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