recently a newish old friend who reads my blog and is on a certain social networking site asked me
"don't you ever get vulnerable, self conscious, or scared? how can you be so sure about the parenting thing?"
um, yeah. every. single. day. of. my. life. the blog is called sillymortalmama after all. right? and with that i'll stop short of saying, DUH.
let's just break this down, shall we? the only way i can be sure about my parenting is to ask, what's my alternative? always WORRY about it? TELL myself i'm doing a bad job? KNOW deep down inside that all my choices are wrong and i'm just waiting for the other shoe to drop?
in that same vein, what about the vulnerability and the self consciousness and the fear? like i said. DUH. but i'm sorry, i did that for nearly 38 years. i'm done. and i've decided i'm trying something new.
because what if we raised ourselves like we do our babies/kids? or how we were or *wished* we were raised as babies/kids? what if we praised ourselves and honored ourselves and loved ourselves just. as. we. are.
ooooh, look how cute you are with all that chub! look at your beautiful smile! i wuv your bald wittle head! you are SO smart! you are so creative! you are so clever! oh i love you SO SO SO SO much! you are the best thing that ever happened to me!
and then when we tantrumed or got sad or hurt, we held ourselves with soothing words and gentle hugs and just stayed open to it. we didn't run away from it or get disgusted with our behavior or just simply ignore it all together and hope it went away. we sat with ourselves until we felt better.
it's not that i don't feel all that crap. it's just that i'm done letting it be at the forefront of what's happening here. because trust me, the column of "cons" in my life is long. i'm just choosing to focus on the other side of the page.
look, i know you're all tired of hearing about me losing my house. trust me folks, i'm sick of hearing about it myself. but it is the perfect illustration of the other shoe dropping. and then you're like, okay, now what? roll up into a ball and wait for the auction? be really really sad and never recover? drink a big ol' cup of penny royal tea?
you know what i did when i found that notice tacked up on the house for the first time? well, i knew it was coming and i'll tell you what i *thought* i would do. i thought i would fall to my knees and never get up. i *knew* i would. because that's just what you do when vulnerability and self consciousness and fear rule the roost. ooh, then maybe i could somehow find a way to blame it on my childhood and then be able to milk it for all its worth. oh poor poor me. right? i'm being semi-facetious, of course, but you get the picture.
but you know what? i didn't. i untacked the letter, handed it to my husband, and went in and wrote the best damn query letter of my life and sent it off to a slew of literary agents.
and now i prefer to believe that you can't know what it looks like until it happens, and then you just go from there. so you might as well focus on the good stuff. might as well give yourself a chance.
the fact that i've faced rejection after rejection after rejection in the time since is neither here nor there i suppose. ;)
i'm finding everything in my life that is good or charming. from the teeniest to the hugest. and i'm exploiting them fully. why wouldn't i? why wouldn't you? or any of us?
so yeah, pretty much it's all about me and how fabulous things are. because this is my life so why wouldn't it be? why wouldn't i tell about the good things? i've done enough of illustrating all the negatives in my life. i'm done. because not that it's not valid or necessary to work through them, but just because it's ultimately taking up all the space. where is the light gonna go? where will the good things take up residence? and besides, how much fun really is it to complain? (after the initial bitching that is.)
but, just to expose a huge flaw, i will now contradict myself and tell you the following illustrate that it really *isn't* all about me.
wingman was recently stuffing his gullet when i asked him to slow down, actually chew his food. then the duke piped up and admitted that he used to swallow his macaroni and cheese whole because it was so easy to do. then wingman admitted the same thing!
okay i have to interject a side note here to those of you who are not mothers. please don't admit things to your mother after the fact. no matter the amount of time that has passed, no matter what it is. it will always piss us off and make us worry and upset us. we will rarely be amused. you could be 80 and and your mother over 100 and this would still be true. trust me.
"guys, i'd be careful with that. i'm sure i can do the heimlich if i had to, but i wouldn't be able to follow it up with CPR if necessary."
"yeah, i think everyone, especially parents, should know CPR. but i am totally rusty. so chew carefully and don't have a heart attack, okay?"
to which wingman replied with
"well, i'm not going to need to know CPR. but my wife will."
and then i got this sinking feeling. because wingman doesn't even like girls but he HAS mentioned a wife before in passing. and it's never pretty. read on.
"your wife? why your wife and not you?"
"because my wife will take care of the kids. so she'll have to know."
"um, won't you be taking care of the kids, too?"
"um, no. because that's why i will have a wife."
oy. like i said, not pretty. and this isn't the first time it's been brought up. this mythical wife and what her duties will be. and that list is long and ever growing. so far wingman's duties include making them pancakes and eggs and teaching them how to play the Wii. i've not seen it grow from that.
and where he gets this i cannot say. because while i am fairly traditional in my role as wife and mother in this house, he sees his father do all the same things i do. sometimes better. he is being raised to know that gender doesn't have to play a role in our roles in life. it can, but it doesn't *have* to.
so yeah, you want vulnerability and self consciousness and fear?
apparently i'm raising a male chauvinist pig.
happy now? ;)