This is my bear. It was given to me by my great grandmother when I was born. It's pretty much the thing I've owned for the longest (or one of few things I've owned the longest). Now, I love to think of myself as this transitory, evolving personality - a fluid self, but I was thinking about this bear (and my similarly old bunny) and I wondered about a couple of things: 1. Me as as a current genetic conclusion, and thus, 2. How much of me (i.e. my self and personality/identity) is inherited? How much of me is fluid and how much of me is a pre-determined collection of genes and ancestral memory? Are those things contradictory? No matter what choices I make in life and situations I involve myself in and any subsequent change I experience in myself, will I always be fundamentally and firstly the child who recieved this bear?
I mean, I still have the bear, so it's never left me. It's been with me all the time, somewhere nearby throughout every existential crisis and every realisation. So is the current me, with various traits and ideas conjured via a life of choices and discoveries, more me than the me that holds all the familial memories and the particular genetic make up? Obviously those two axes exist in me at the same time. They're the same person. So the question doesn't really make sense.
I have this sense of myself as an inevitability, and it's both calming and distressing. I want to be someone of my own design, but that's impossible, since I was made - the next in a sequence of birth and death. It's kinda gross. I know that people think of birth as a very beautiful and wonderful thing, and I get that, but I always thought it was kinda gross. I always thought the concept of life was kinda gross, whenever I thought about it. It's not like you get to consent to living, you know? You're just forced to be born and be alive. You don't get to think about it, you just are it. Sometimes I just can't believe that!
So I think what I'm getting at here is that maybe I want to identify with myself more as the eventual result of the lives of all my ancestors. Sometimes identifying as a real person at all is weird to me, and growing up I always felt seperate from my family, because I felt that I was myself and no-one was like me or could be easily related to me. When I was really little I earnestly wondered if I was actually an alien because I didn't recognise myself in everyone around me. I've heard that's a pretty common thought for a little kid, so I guess little kids are weird and wacky aliens. Sometimes I miss being that little alien, but I guess the bear makes me happy because it feels more real than me. It remains unchanged. It's a cute kind of anchor to some part of my humanity (whatever that is).