Breaking the Psycho
As I get older, I’m coming to a horrible realization. Things I do, silly phrases that slip from my mouth, and even some of my facial expressions remind me of my mother. I’m sure there are some who wouldn’t mind this because they get along quite well with their moms. Personally, however, I don’t have a very good history with my mother. Seeing these things in myself reminds me of a not-so-happy past, and that is why I want to know if there is a way to keep from letting her permeate through my subconscious into the physical world for a dreaded appearance.
My husband explained something very interesting to me. He researched this because he has a lot of the same habits and tendencies as his biological father, but he spent less than a month with his dad over the course of twenty-eight years. This phenomenon has been called genetic memory-basically claiming that memories are transferred through DNA. The science community argues this however, and labels other scientists who support the theory as pseudo-scientists. Why would this be such a foreign concept to grasp?
It’s not unusual to see a natural talent passed down to children. I have always loved art, and I excel at drawing objects. Place a still-life in front of me, and I create the equivalence of a black and white picture, but tell me to draw a car and don’t give me a tangible reference-my drawing turns out looking like I drew it while wearing a blindfold. I also fail miserably at drawing the human form. My husband, on the other hand, can draw anything from his imagination or memory. Our twelve-year-old daughter is a beautiful artist, and she can draw both realistic and imaginative subjects.
Scientists even tested mice to see if genetic memory could be proven. They started by training mice to go through a maze. The mice walked this maze repeatedly, and finally learned how to make it to the end. The offspring from all of those mice were placed in the same maze. Each generation was able to finish the maze faster than the last, until the final generation tested completed it in less than thirty seconds. I think that’s pretty amazing, and the evidence for genetic memory in that case is indisputable.
Even more interesting, is the study done on flatworms. Scientist electrocuted flatworms every time a light was turned on; when shocked, the worms curled up. After that treatment, any time the worms were exposed to the light, they curled. The coolest part of this is that flatworms can regenerate. If the worm is cut in half, the tail end grows a new head and the head end grows a new tail. Well, guess what happened after they regenerated and were exposed to light. They curled up! Tell me that’s not amazing, and that it doesn’t prove this cool anomaly.
So if good and cool things can be passed down, surely the negative can too. We say the admirable, positive traits are “talents”, and they are inherited from past relatives. Just because something we do or the way we act is less than desirable, doesn’t mean it wasn’t absorbed from one of our parents. Negative things don’t have to be learned by observing and mimicking. Take me as an example. I make it a point to not be like my mother. I saw how she acted when I was growing up, and even at a young age, it sickened me. So when I make one of her facial expressions, or even write in mixed print and cursive, it’s completely involuntary. I didn’t make it a point to do that; I would have no reason to do those things on purpose. I’m not masochistic. The real question is…can I break the cycle? I don’t want the same traits passed onto my daughter as well.
So are memories stored in DNA? If they are, I don’t see any way to prevent them from showing. I don’t want to be a bi-polar, paranoid schizophrenic, but for as much as I do not want to be that way, I still don’t want to take medicine in order to prevent it. Well, I’d be okay with a gum or a patch. Can I buy Bitchorette or BitchoDerm at the pharmacy? Maybe I can wear a rubber band around my wrist and snap it at the very second I see the awkward version of Joan Crawford seeping through. “No wire hang… ” *Snap* Ouch!!