“You’re just being contrary!” my mum used to say. I think that from a young age, she must have found me indeed, a bit different than other kids my age.

I wasn’t rebellious, in fact as a teen I was anything but rebellious, but you might say that I went through the usual girly teen behaviour so many of us poor women went through. I fell in and out of love with pop stars, loved singing and dancing and enjoyed an outdoor lifestyle with many of my friends.

Perhaps my generation was the last one to grow up without mobile phones, without game consoles to play bowling without the actual ball and tennis without being on a tennis court.

Our playground wasn’t a one metre spot in front of the television, no; we had a large park in front of where I lived, a playground in the back, football pitch to the right and a high school on the left. Excellent places to hang out, tease boys, have silly chats with girlfriends and plot world domination. After all, as a teenager, you often think you will live forever and that you’ll be some kind of Superwoman.

I never became Xena, Warrior Princess because from early on in life, my health had more medical hiccups than a dog has real hiccups. Measles; chicken pox; bronchitis attacks; some weird allergic reaction that made me end up all red and covered in bubbles; sprained ankles, wrists (and ego), and a whole bunch of other illnesses. And if I wasn’t managing some infection, then I got spider bites, mosquito bites and bites in the proverbial bum of being just, well… contrary, I suppose.

On the other hand, I never broke a bone in my life until 5 years ago when I broke my tailbone (coccyx). Here I was, FINALLY breaking something and it couldn’t even be put in a cast. Utter disappointment because of course, I had years of broken bones to catch up on and now my friends, family, colleagues, neighbours, boyfriends, ex-boyfriends and their new wives couldn’t even sign the darn cast!

Like I said, contrary.

Otherwise, the non-rebel that I was, I think I only smoked 5 cigarettes in my life and consumed about a litre of beer before deciding I didn’t like alcohol at the age of 16. Never tried drugs (apart from the ones my doctors prescribe me) and I haven’t got a clue about the ones you end up in jail or rehab for.

Contrary again so.

More than likely I aged before my real age decided it still had some more ageing to do. Now please don’t compare me to your granny because there is still some hope for me. I like concerts as long as I can sit down and get a cab ride home. I like rugby, more the I’ll-let-you-strong-boys-play-it-for-me-type than me doing it myself (obviously). And I like ice cream, big time, like a kid likes Christmas. That must prove that I am not yet ready to be put by the garbage outside just yet, n’est-ce pas?

Oh, I’ve done other things contrary, although that’s food for next time.


Did someone say ice cream?

©Willeke Van Eeckhoutte and Ireland, Multiple Sclerosis & Me, 2011-2013. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Willeke Van Eeckhoutte and Ireland, Multiple Sclerosis & Me with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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