BALTIC BELLE

On this personally eventful day, I may as well try to rewind to my very first memories of this existence seeing as I can’t remember the life before this one. 

I’m not sure about my mother, but from what I have been told...my father didn’t want to have any daughters….oops….I meant ‘assigned females’. 

Before I was born, I wasn’t given the alternative name of Patrick so it was to be Niklas Stensson (as in ‘son of Sten’) Karlberg. 

It’s funny because not so long ago, that name would’ve made me feel very uncomfortable but after ‘waking up’ and realising that THAT was simply just a name… it is one that shaped most of who and what I am today. 

I suppose it’s like the friends and people that come and go throughout your life and Niklas has totally left the building now but gave me loads of spiritual freebies. 

Apart from the local supermarket that was a 10 to 15 minute drive away from our fishing and yacht racing village of Vikhög, I will always remember obtaining whatever you wanted to and needed from the nearby sea, forest and our back garden. 

Both my parents were (and are) great cooks and that must’ve influenced them both so much that that could’ve been passed down to my brother and I… well, that’s when I can be bothered... which I haven’t lately! 

I only have one memory of the local supermarket and that was seeing a young skinny man dressed in black who inspired me to take an interest in comic book super heroes….especially Batman! 

I have absolutely no idea how young I was but certainly young enough for my mother to tell me not to speak to strangers. 

At the age of 12, I would always associate how Michael Jackson dressed for his ‘BAD’ album with that gentleman I saw at that supermarket. 

Maybe that’s another reason why there’s a goth within the realms of my soul that comes out once in a blue moon! 

Anyways... I know I don’t talk much about being a fan girl of certain things but at least comic book super heroes and villains is one factor. 

Another one is crocodiles and alligators after seeing my first crocodiles in Thailand when I was 2 but I think I’ve mentioned that already and as I have talked about Thailand so many times now, it’s time to give my life in Sweden a bit more love. 

If only I could remember my first seven years though! 

Memories of my father teaching me how to swim by the beach five minutes walk from us, having sword fights with my bro, my father buying me my very first bike and teaching my brother and I how to shoot a rifle are the main ones I should cherish for rest of my life as well as ‘business’ holidays in Turkey, Kenya, Tanzania, Miami, France, Switzerland, Italy and Norway to name a few. 

It’s no surprise now that my most cherished memories are of the ones where I gained some level of knowledge. 

Obviously, my days in education began in Sweden. 

Kindergarten was pretty awesome and so was primary school. 

I remember our teacher... or whatever you call them….giving us slices of orange in a dark room full of objects for kids such as big inflated balls and different coloured shapes made out of wood and the only light was the natural light coming from outside from the row of windows to the right hand side of the big spacious gym-esque room. 

I’m not sure if this was also at kindergarten so I will just add that at primary school… I remember playing on the snow-covered hills with the other kids sliding down on sleds and nearly hitting into each other. 

I remember another girl called Cindy who pinched me so hard once that it hurt and one day…came to school with a white cotton pad on her left eye. 

Until this day I will never know why. 

I remember sitting in a room with my first special-needs teacher having no idea that that is what they were there for until recently….when that memory just clicked that I’ve been a ‘special’ person my whole life. 

I even remember my first spiritual experience of sitting in a circle with the other kids around a candle that was lit by one of our teachers and whilst holding hands, we were encouraged to look at it…. and then close our eyes as if meditating. 

I suppose the early 80s as a kid wasn’t so bad after all, I never ever got bullied for being autistic or mixed-race at all back in Sweden. 

That’s definitely one thing I miss the most but if I’d stayed there, I know that my brother and I would’ve had to join the territorial army. 

It’s a good thing that we didn’t!

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