We have all heard that expression at least once. It is an age old question posed to make you wax all philosophical about what is reality. From that quote there have been other incarnations; If a bear sh*ts in the woods and no one is around to smell it does it still stink?...If a man is talking in the forest and there is no woman around to hear him is he still wrong?...Is a frog's ass watertight?...the list goes on and on. Now I am not trying to go all Friedrich Nietzsche on you, but I have a philosophical question for you to ponder. It is one I bet you have never heard; If a bin full of craft supplies falls on a mom's head and no one comes to see if she is OK does it still hurt? YES! Yes, it does!!
This happened to me the other day. We have so much craft stuff we needed to buy a 5 foot pantry cabinet to hold it all. I noticed something was hanging out of the bottom of the cabinet so I innocently opened it to remove the scrap paper hanging out. What I didn't realize at the time was that I was not simply opening the craft cabinet door, no, it was much more sinister...I was opening the gates to HELL! As soon as I opened the door to the cabinet a rain of arts and crafts crap that would make Martha Stewart proud fell down upon me culminating with a heavy bin of colored pencils whacking me on the head before spilling all over the kitchen floor. It was a loud crash. Very loud. Now, our house is on the smaller side. It is small enough for us to hear each other's thoughts. There is no way on God's green earth that my family did not hear the crash. Surely one of them would come running to make sure their matriarch is still alive. Nope, OK, they would at least call out from their rooms to see if everything was alright. Negative. Not one person, or pet for that matter came to my rescue. I sat on the floor for a bit amidst all the recyclable egg cartons, cray-pas, Mod-Podge and glue sticks and realized no one gave a sh*t. It was a sad, sobering thought...
This little incident was quite enlightening. I am not going to lump Chuck in this whole equation, he does care about me and we make a good team together. But my children don't really give me a second thought. Once they have what they need from me I become useless. I don't think this is unique to my kids, I think this is generally how it is with children and their moms. Sara is 9 and starting to hit that age where she thinks she knows everything and assumes I know nothing. This becomes even more apparent when one of her friends is around. It is as if she can't admit she likes me to anyone. I remember years ago when my niece was around this age my sister saying when she is with her friends she acts all queer. At the time I had no children and I thought calling your kid queer was kind of harsh. Now, going through it myself it is spot on. She becomes queer with a CAPITAL Q!! She rolls her eyes at whatever I say, she tries to make me look like super nerdy and like an idiot in front of them and that I am just all around uncool. It is so annoying and I want to scream out, "oh was I uncool last night when you were begging to sleep in my bed because you were afraid of the wind?" But I don't. It is just a phase that all mothers and daughters go through. Lucky me gets to go through it 3 times and between them I get to be ridiculed and mocked for the next 15 years. YAY ME!!
We went to buy new furniture for our TV room the other day. We are actually buying real, grown up furniture!! I told Chuck the day it gets delivered we should ship the girls off somewhere for the night so we can say we actually had something nice for a few hours before they destroy it. But I digress, Sara came with us and she was making suggestions about what we should get. I told her that ultimately Chuck and I had final say and she said without missing a beat, "oh so it will be something ugly then". It is that kind of stuff I am dealing with.
The other day Sara was getting ready for school and her hair wasn't just the way she wanted it. It looked fine by the way. I offered to help and was very politely told in a voice reminiscent of the Exorcist, "no I don't want your help...you are terrible at doing hair". Now, as a general rule I do suck at doing hair but all she wanted was a simple pony tail. I CAN handle that. I didn't get upset or flustered by the wonderful vote of confidence from my own flesh and blood. I actually had to chuckle. I remember doing the exact same thing to my mom when I was about that age. Thankfully nowadays the girls were their hair long and straight. I was in school from the late 70's until 1990. My poor mom had to deal with the Dorothy Hamil bowl cut of the 70's, the straight down the middle with feathered sides of the early 80's and the huge Aqua Net hair of the late 80's. She didn't stand a chance! There was so much yelling, throwing of brushes and slamming of doors every morning it was a wonder DCF didn't come and take me away. Being taken away by the state wasn't the only hazard I had to overcome. My mom would do my hair every morning with a cigarette in her mouth, hey, it was the 80's. With the amount of hairspray being dispensed each morning I am lucky to have not been blown up. Oh and world, I am so sorry about the ozone. I think I may have single handedly depleted it with my Aussie Sprunch Spray. I wish I could talk to my mom again and offer her a mea culpa, Lo siento, Je suis desolee, Scusa, Ich bitte Sie, Sumimasen and I'm sorry in as many languages as I can. I know I can't say those things to her anymore...but I feel as though she is somewhere looking down on me and laughing and laughing about me getting my comeuppance. As a side note, I just had to take a 15 minute break from writing my blog to deal with a meltdown due to the fact a certain someone can't find a hat that doesn't make her look stupid. Mind you we are in the middle of a blizzard and all of our immediate neighbors are in their 80's so I don't think they will be making any fashion commentaries. But hey, what do I know? I'm just the mom.
Sara isn't the only guilt party. The other two chime in with their little digs too but they are just that much younger so they aren't nearly as bad...yet. I did tell Chuck years ago that he had my permission to move out when Sara hit 11 returning when Emily turned 18. I figure that would give him enough time to avoid the majority of the drama, hormonal instability and all around shit showiness of the female pre and teenage years. I will stay home, not because I am a martyr, more of penance for my own teenage angst I put my parents through.
When I was talking about the subject of my blog with Chuck, Emily said if a craft bin fell on my head she would come to see if I am OK. I reminded her that the other night when that happened she ignored me. She thought for a minute and told me, "well, if it happens today I will see if you are OK". The sentiment is nice and I think she really believed what she was saying but somehow coming from the girl who yells, "don't talk to me" when asked if she has poop in her diaper...I somehow don't trust her to come rushing to my aid.
This is going to be a long ride....I guess I better buckle up! Thank God for Prozac an awesome therapist and wine.