How do you deal with the bumps and lumps in life?

Every now and then I surprise myself.

Sometimes it’s a nice surprise, and I realise I’m not quite who I thought I was. Some incident, usually a small one, reveals to me that I’m less of a mess than I see myself as being. Or I realise that being such a mess is an advantage every now and then – those are the best nice surprises!

Sometimes it’s a neutral surprise. It’s a reminder of something you already know but maybe haven’t thought about in a while. It can be nice, but it’s more neutral in its effect. It’s sort of: “Oh, yeah…that.”

For instance I know I’m not the terrible person I was convinced that I was for so long since childhood because my narcissist mother needed for me to be the terrible one so that she in comparison could be the wonderful one (it was a little bit more complicated than that, as it always is with narcissists).

A large part of the narcissist’s view of themselves relies on comparing themselves with others, with the ideal goal being to compare themselves with someone else and win that competition (eg. my ego is bigger than yours, yours is puny! HAHA I WIN! – that was a bad example,Ā  I’m sure you can come up with a better one). The comparison competition is usually rigged because they have more of a chance to consistently win that way.

Sometimes it’s a nasty surprise. We all know what those are. Those ones tend to get our attention the most and make us forget all the other kinds of surprises. Those ones can make us surprise-phobic.

The other night I surprised myself, but I’m not sure what category of self-surprise it falls into… it all started earlier than I’m going to start the story.

I had just finished watching a film (what film it was isn’t really relevant, or maybe it is and I haven’t made the connection) and got up to do some stuff (like get a glass of water). That’s when I felt a weird sensation which I described quickly to myself in imagery as a screwed up fairly unused tissue which you’d tucked into your sweatpants’ waist because no pockets, and it went for a ramble down the pants and got stuck halfway down. But my sweats have pockets and the legs are loose. So… WTF!?

WTF!? in this case turned out to be a newly formed prominent lump on my knee (see image below)…

.

.

And no, I’m not going to share an actual photo of it because ew (even though it’s not really that ew, it’s more huh? Is your knee supposed to look like it’s wearing a bowler hat without the rim?), but if you’re a visual kind of person and need more than a drawing – type ‘prepatellar bursitis’ (otherwise known as Housemaid’s knee) into google images.

My body regularly surprises me.

Mostly they’re nice surprises as in – I survived that uninjured! I really didn’t think I’d get away with that! Thank goodness I have a hard head because that was a rather strong impact! I am always hitting my head because I often forget it’s there. It does have a few permanent not originally part of the skull bumps and scars. The biggest is when I crashed into a concrete wall while playing some stupid human centipede (not at all like that film I am never going to watch) type game at school because I was at the front and the kid at the back fell over, human dominoes falling ensued with added momentum for each kid which fell and my skull broke the fall for all of us. Luckily there were only about 20 kids in the class (me included).

Often they’re neutral surprises as in – Huh? What have I done now, is that blood!? where did that come from… oh yeah… never mind it’ll sort itself out.

Occasionally they’re bad surprises like some years ago when my back couldn’t take anymore and said enough! But it got better while teaching me to be less of an ass to my body.

What has surprised me the most about this sudden lump on my knee and how I’ve handled it since it appeared seemingly out of the blue is that I didn’t feel ashamed about it. I didn’t feel like I needed to hide it, pretend it wasn’t there and tell no one. Don’t bother people with your stuff!

To be fair to the me who feels ashamed of bothering people with my stuff, if you have any ailment or injury around narcissists… it turns into a competition, and a point of comparison, with the narcissists always having to win (no one suffers quite like a narcissist, you will never win the suffering olympics when they’re participating even if you take it to the max).

I realise that sounds strange, but it’s even stranger to live it.

If I got a cold as a child, my mother would get the flu and my father would get pneumonia. My mother would then let my father and myself know (loudly and repeatedly, for years afterwards too) that she had won because unlike us she was soldiering on, a saint and martyr forced to look after both of us while she was dying more than we were. Once you’ve been on this merry-go-round a few times, you learn to keep as much as you can about yourself to yourself, and to always feel wrong about having any stuff of your own. It’s a hard habit to break… free from.

When you come to think about it… everything and everyone is strange. In some ways it’s what makes personal stories so interesting. It’s how we find out that we’re not alone in strangeness, even if our strangeness is slightly different from that of others. We’re all strangeness expressing itself.

I didn’t surprise myself though, when I decided to give my knee lump a name, Lumpy (short for Lumpknee), and a voice of its own. Lumpy says: It’s time for you to stop kneeling, and crawling around on your knees!

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8 thoughts on “How do you deal with the bumps and lumps in life?

Add yours

  1. I keep accidentally hitting send.

    I want to know when someone I care for is not feeling well or finds something weird or odd going on. There’s privacy, yes, but there’s allowing people who care for us to care for us and I think that’s something we ACoNs have to learn. We’re not wrong about having lumps and bumps and it’s okay to be comforted when they pop up too.

    I think I’m done typing now. I think I’ll hit send. šŸ˜‰

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    1. Buttons! šŸ˜‰

      I agree, I also prefer it when people tell me exactly what’s going on with them. I don’t just want to be there for others when things are hunky-dunky for them. And I get annoyed when someone keeps an injury, ailment or personal issue which is affecting them from me because they don’t want to bother me. I do see the sort of hypocrisy of me not doing what I want others to do. It’s just that it’s so easy to brush my own stuff off, under a rug, I’ve been doing it for so long and the training to be private about my own stuff was an intensive course of constantly being told in lots of ways that my stuff is a nuisance and no one wants to know. I am gradually changing, bit by tiny bit… maybe.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Hi Lumpy! šŸ™‚

    It’s good that you can accept what your body does without feeling wrong about it. It’s a normal biological reaction to a stress point and is probably going to do it anyway to protect that part of you. šŸ™‚

    My body has been doing more unexpected and strange things for about the last five or so years. M and I compare them and if anyone overheard us doing that we would sound like the most desperate old curmudgeons moaning about our aches and pains. I shouldn’t find it so surprising because I have really lived in my body, but I do.

    My mother was a health martyr as well. To be fair she had been in a bad motor vehicle accident and the consequences of that had a huge impact on her, but she also victimised herself while at the same time claiming the most extraordinary ability to overcome her physical issues. Her injuries were worse than anyone else’s and she had to work more than anyone else. But of course only she possessed the strength to do that. Yikes. How she managed to be both a hero and a victim was amazing. She liked to compare her recovery to my sister’s (she was in the same MVA but less seriously injured). Of course, my sister put little effort into getting better and suffered the consequences. What those were, I’m not sure, as my sister recovered just fine.

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    1. I love that you and M bond over your aches and pains, I think if anyone overheard you they’d most likely join in because there’s something nurturing about that kind of discussion. šŸ™‚

      Unless, of course, a narc is involved and then it’s just another stage for them to make the show all about them. No one suffers as much, as long, as all-encompassingly, as a narc. No one else is really allowed to suffer at all, unless the narc needs them to – either for comparison/competition purposes or because the narc inflicted an injury on someone and wants to get satisfaction (but if they inflicted an injury which they don’t view as that, then you’re not allowed to show any suffering).

      For covert narcs in particular their suffering is how they get what they are after – attention, fuel, special status, ego boost, power, to control others, etc. The victim is the hero, and thus to be the hero you have to be the victim, and it is a competition, they do not like to share the podium. It is a strange scenario because non-narc victims always seek to remove themselves as soon as possible from the status of victim, but covert narcs do the opposite, aiming to prolongue it indefinitely (adding all sorts of provisos which make them exempt, not responsible, and unaccountable).

      Have you ever read Le Malade Imaginaire, it’s a brilliant study of narcissistic behaviour and attitudes.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I have read it – but a long time ago now. I hadn’t thought of it until you mentioned it. It’s time to read that again. šŸ™‚

        I’d been intending more evolved responses to your comments, but I’ve been absolutely levelled by flu and am living in a tissue and soup bubble. I’m feeling a little better today but still have a fever.

        Something like this always reminds me of how great it is to have good health. So, good heath wishes to you! šŸ™‚

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