I was talking to my uncle (my mom's brother) the other day and got to thinking..."wow!"
If I really stop to think about my life it's easy for me to say "how did I turn out so normal? I had no chance!"
There are other times I think "did my childhood really happen? It all seems so long ago and unreal."
Then there are times like my conversation with Uncle the other day that I think "these people are for real?!" and it blows my mind that I'm even remotely in touch with reality.
Mental problems manifest themselves in a variety of ways. One of my husband's relatives has paranoid schizophrenia. When she has an "episode" it's pretty obvious. She talks in hushed tones, her eyes get shifty and she goes on and on about people going through her stuff, or that she knows people are talking about her.
Then there's my mom. Her mannerisms also change. Anyone who pays attention to her can tell some thing's off, even if they don't know her. Her actions speak louder than her words. She does a pretty good job of keeping the irrational thoughts to herself (thankfully).
Then there's my uncle. There is no obvious change in his behavior. His presentation is so convincing that if someone didn't have a firm grasp on reality, it'd be easy to get sucked into thinking what he says is true.
Take our conversation the other day, for instance.
He was talking about his cell phone. He started out making complete sense, then he digressed and started talking about how "they" have bugged his phone. Apparently he works for whoever "they" are. He disabled the bugs, but left the tracking device in tact because it's important for "them" to know where he is at all times.
My mother is convinced he's Jesus (as in God's son, not a Spanish kid), and Uncle has even commented that he's talked to a supreme being and knows things he shouldn't.
So let's recap, shall we?
My grandma (Mom and Uncle's mom) thought she was psychic and could see the future, she was convinced my cousins and I were princesses from the lost land of Atlantis, and she released souls that were stuck in the in-between.
My mom is convinced my uncle (her brother) is Jesus. She also thinks the people on TV can see into the room the TV is in. She has had an affair with a famous person and has given acting advice to another very famous actor. At one point in time she was convinced I was possessed and another time she put salt above the doorways to keep the demons away.
Uncle apparently has also bought into the story about him being deity, also thinks himself to be a government agent of sorts (have you seen "A Beautiful Mind"?) and thinks he is invincible.
I'm sorry, how am I sane? I didn't have a chance!
I am thoroughly convinced that the only reason I'm as well adjusted and normal as I am is because God (as in the God in Heaven...that the Bible talks about. Not some bizarre-o god that walks around disguised as my uncle) had better plans for me. Really, there is no other way.