If only my mom were here today, I swear she would be having total giggle-fits every single day upon being proven right at every turn. How did this happen? How could the woman I thought was SO wrong my entire life turn out to be some kind of psychic?
More and more I wish I could turn to her and say “Damn mom, you were SO RIGHT! My bad. Sorry!” even thought I know she would do a victory dance- I imagine myself as a grandmother feeling completely vindicated in all the shit my kids are giving me grief about now as it is happening to them. History does tend to have a way of repeating itself.
Parenthood is not an 18 year commitment- it is a lifetime- from the moment you conceive until your very last breath. Whether it be your children or your children’s children- it continues on and on and ON.
Yeah, so much for the notion that once the kids move out you’re done, right?
Never before has my nose been rubbed in my eternal wrongness as when it comes to toys. Now, I never saw my mom go totally spaz-crazy on one and tear the batteries out… not that I’ve done that or anything… but she never seemed to develop the hatred that I have for some of them. Or maybe she was just better at hiding it. Or maybe I was just too caught up with myself to even care. Or the really stupid whale dress she insisted putting me in all the time. What can I say- I was easily dist- Oh, shiny!
My entire life, toys were things to play with. This playing with included smashing them into each other, throwing them, banging on them, sitting on them, riding things around that were not ride-on toys but they worked well enough for me, and trying to make things with wings fly. I mean, it makes sense- right? Yet somehow I always got in trouble for doing these things.
What? Why? What did I do wrong?? It’s a toy! It’s meant to be played with! I’m just playing with it! You’re crazy, lady!
Life loves to play cruel jokes on us, and just like mommy warned that we’d understand when we had kids of our own and we thought she was totally full of shit and only trying to get her way for no reason at all other than to protect her perfect record of being right (which is a pretty safe assumption to make, am I right?)- we understand. We don’t like it one bit- but we finally GET IT. Those thick skulls we were told we always had finally softened the hell up and reality swooped in and punched us in the tit. Or the balls. Whichever you have. Reality sucker punched’em good and hard.
Or… smashed them. Ouch, smashing tits- that’s not exactly the visual I was aiming for- but let’s go with it.
Smashing- like what I have walked in on for the past week (week? what am I saying. LIFE. his whole LIFE) with Parker taking one toy and beating the ever-living fuck out of another that frighteningly reminded me of that terror Sid from Toy Story. I mean, he’s a kid. He’s a boy! They’re supposed to do these kinds of things, aren’t they? But instead of seeing a child banging around toys in a way that comes natural to him- I see money floating right out the window. DEAR GOD, THAT WAS SO EXPENSIVE! YOU STOP THAT RIGHT NOW BEFORE YOU BREAK IT!
Bam! Hi mom. I didn’t see you there in my subconscious. How long have you been there? Oh… only my whole life? Okay then.
It’s no wonder my mom’s head nearly spun all the way around when she walked into the living room and caught me chopping all of my Barbies’ heads off with a piece of wood. It didn’t matter that the heads pop on and off rather easily- it was that I was beating the pulp out of things she spent money on- and money isn’t something the vast majority of us just toss away. Even if it is just a child playing. That never once registered in my brain- just like it never does in my kids’ brains.
There is a part of me that is grateful that I finally understand my mom. I finally know she wasn’t just trying to crap on my good times to be mean or because she hated things like fun and joy. The other part of me misses the me that had no concept of money or bills or the dollar amount of a toy getting smashed to pieces in a fit of toddler glee.
Of course I want my children to learn respect for their toys, their furniture- pretty much everything. Respect what you have enough not to totally destroy it- but there is a line. I refuse to teach them in a way that puts a dollar sign in front of everything while they are still young enough not to understand how tough the world really is. I want to let them have their fun. I want to let my kids be kids, just like my mom let me (even if she HATED it.)
I also want to get the moment my mother never got to have with me. Rubbing my kids face in my new-found eternal rightness with a big fat “told ya so!”
How you win at parenting pic.twitter.com/vFxCsfqmh7
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