Monday, June 18, 2012

At The Intersection of Crazy and Parenting

If you're familiar with Dooce, you've heard her say that because she's crazy she doesn't hear and see things the way other people do.  That someone can say something as innocuous as "Hi" and in her head, she hears something, "I hate you."  Yeah, I'm like that.

And I'm like that all the time, every day.  And while I can carry on a perfectly normal conversation with you, and you will think I'm fine, but I hear something that for me, interprets to "I hate you, Laura, and also, you smell bad."  I know, I know, that it's me and not you.  I know that you think we're having a normal conversation and you have no idea that I'm dissecting every nuance of whatever it was that was said.  I'm going over and over it in my head, hearing all the ways I am just not good enough to even be sitting this close to you, let alone presuming to talk to you.

So because I'm crazy, parenting has all sorts of room to reassure myself that I am, in fact, the stupidest person who has ever lived and shouldn't even be allowed to have spiders build their webs in my corners, let alone be in charge of raising a whole other person.  For the most part, I manage to keep my crazy from impacting the midget too much.  Because I know I'm crazy, while I will obsess over whether the midget will end up in a gutter somewhere, saying "If only I had a decent mother..." I also, am pretty good at keeping those fears to myself.  Because, if I'm not careful, the midget will end up  reassuring me (ME!).  Which is not okay and is just going to lead into a whole other round of self-recrimination, that will lead to a downward spiral which will end with me sitting in a gutter...or throwing the midget into the gutter myself to prove to myself that I am, in fact, a horrible parent.

One of the most interesting (Did I say interesting?  I meant mind-blowingly idiotic.) aspects of the crazy as it relates to parenting is that if I see someone on the television doing something stupid, I immediately wonder about how his or her parents feel about it.  It's why, to this day, I can't watch Jackass or any of the stupid spin-offs spawned by it.  Every time I see them doing those stupid, disgusting things, my inner mom thinks, "Please, please, for the love of all that is good in the world, let me be dead if the midget decides to ever do that and televise it."

It also leads to me telling the midget not to do things.  A girl get bullied online in a Lifetime movie?  Clearly this calls for an hour long discussion about what to do if she's bullied online, and what will happen if I ever find out that she's been bullying someone.  And Teen Mom?  Please.  There isn't enough Xanax  in all the world to allow me to sit through that one.

Needless to say, the midget is used to being instructed not to blow up buildings or dismember people or wear dirty underwear, just depending on what we're watching.  However, I apparently offended her intelligence tonight.  We were watching a show about  BASE jumping, as I turned to her to say "Please, don't ever go BASE jumping."  She got that look that all parents of adolescent girls know and hate so well and said "Really?  Really, Mom?  You're going to tell me not to go BASE jumping?  Really?  How stupid do you think I am?"

I couldn't decide whether to smack her or laugh....kinda like most moments with a 12 year old, really.

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Adventures in Self-Love

I really wish Blogger would quit changing shit...or that maybe I was around often enough to notice and understand the changes.  Mostly, though, it's the option that requires on effort of my part.  That's just how I roll.


Anyway, I am here for once, and it's not just to post a video to a song that's roughly the same age I am.  Though, I admit that'll likely happen next.  And not just because listening to songs that are as old as I am makes me feel younger.  It's because sometimes the words in my head get garbled somewhere between my brain and my fingers, and so it's easier to post someone else's words and go..."Yeah, what she said."

I am recovering from a fantastic, but exhausting weekend.  My younger sister came to visit and we decided that , dammit, we deserved some fun.  So, we thought we'd head out to the Italian Picnic, which is a lot like a county fair without the livestock, but with the added bonus of bocce ball.  And, since it's one of the Amador County events, usually you run into everyone you've ever slept with, and their brother...and if you're anything like me, you've probably slept with them, too.  Strangely, I only saw a handful of people I knew, which probably means I'm getting old.  So, after a brief lap of the picnic, during which I was reminded that heels and grass are a bad combo, we headed off to a local bar, to have some fun.

And we did have fun.  I got the older sister to join us, and the midget's dad and his lovely girlfriend were there as well.  We listened to a band that plainly prescribed to the theory that if you can't play it well, you should at least play it loud.  There were a surprising number of people in a very small space, and the bartender made a mean White Russian.  Once our eardrums had been thoroughly assaulted and I had clearly had enough alcohol, we headed off to Denny's (also an Amador County tradition) and ate greasy food to soak up the alcohol.

The evening, combined with a weekend of family time has made me quite exhausted and achy, but my soul feels better than it has in a long, long while.  We're doing it again next month.  It's part of my new "take care of Laura" plan.  And frankly, I need it.  As much fun as I have hanging out with my family...and I do have fun, it's not the same.  Sometimes, I need to not be someone's mom or aunt.  Plus...I need a break from my cousin...I love her dearly, but her continuous unhappiness over everything is wearing.

Look, I get depression.  I understand how it sucks all the color out of the world, and covers even the best things in your life with shit.  It makes you feel like nothing has ever felt okay, and like it will never end.  I get that, but you can't wallow all day, every day.  You can't turn everything into a tragedy and you can't stop finding the humor in shit.  You have to laugh despite the shit, despite the depression.  Because if you don't, then what's the fucking point?

I've got a few more plans in the near future, things that are designed to make me furiously happy.  I've got lunch with a very old friend next week, and another night out with my sisters next month.  I'm talking dancing on tables and waking up in the morning with my fake eyelashes stuck to my nose, going, "Damn that was fun."  I can't wait!

And, because I have to share my musical's what's on repeat on my iPod this week...