A View From My Point

Posts tagged ‘Irreverent Parenting’

We Need To Talk

All of us. Yes, all of us – come from parents – some kind of parents, doesn’t matter, we’re here now aren’t we?

And I don’t think we’re doing too shabbily. I mean, we’re alive (big YAY), we’re reading stuff on the Internet – wow, got some education there didn’t we? Did our parents do that for us? Mine didn’t – they might have enabled me, yes they certainly did and they pushed for a whole lot extra by springing for a tertiary education but if I was 5 years old I could probably still make sense of these etchings  on a page. And look at you – managing so well by yourself – hell, I bet even my blind friends have these words piped into some kind of  device that makes them ‘talk’.

So, why oh why is there this constant criticism and judgment of how people are raising their children or how they they themselves were raised. I know money makes the world go round but essentially it’s people that want the money to make it go round so isn’t it really People that make the world go round?

All these rules:

love them when they cry, ignore them when they cry

feed them from the breast or feed them from the bottle

oh good grief, give birth to them with your own vagina or have an incision made in your own abdomen but whatever you do get them birthed and there they are – Birthed. New people, every .05 seconds or something like that – google it – I’m too lazy.

Show them flash cards, don’t play them anything but Mozart or put the tv on so that they get used to noise.

Strap them into the car or let them roam around on the dashboard.

Don’t let boys where pink, don’t let girls do karate or boys can get away with pink while they play rugby and girls need to learn self-defense.

No sugar, no salt, no nuts, no eggs, no food after midnight and don’t let them get wet – that might be mogwais – same difference.

Bath them once a day from day one or don’t bath them for the first 6 weeks of external womb existence and it’s cool to take a break on weekends.

Wear them or grow them in incubators.

Listen to The Men/Gods in White Coats or The Local Faith Healer and White Witch

Put oil (not petroleum) on their crusty little scalps or hang them from the ankles to increase blood circulation to the pip section.

Swaddle them like samoosas or cover them lightly in anything except down feathers.

Wooden toys only or recycled plastic toys to protect the environment (which one? my house or the global one which seems to be pretty good at taking care of itself?)

Pay a fortune for school and deck them out in designer duds. Organic (what is that?) Cotton only with or Polyester only because that’s what they’ll be wearing in space one day.

Cut their hair, grow their hair, paint them and parade them like dolls or let them run barefoot everywhere or squash their little feet and legs into the right shape with shoes and leg irons.

It’s enough to make anyone second guess themselves every second time they make a Parenting Decision.

Look around.

I had a fellow Mom ask me the other day if I had noticed how different my children where to each other.

um.

Yes.

They’re two different people.

I asked her if she felt that she and I were alike barring the fact that we’d both reproduced via the loin.

The conversations stopped there.

Come On People.

We are ALL People.

We all got here.

We all Live here.

Our parents raised us. Mine smacked me. Sometimes I didn’t eat anything except chocolate cake and coca cola. We never had to sleep in the car for more than a 5 hours at a time, we weren’t strapped in and we got lucky and we always had a roof over our heads. But I’m willing to guess that some of the folk out there that have had to live in their cars and munch on raw carrots for weeks on end are also Alive and using MXIT on their cellphones. After I was given the boot instead of a car for my 21st birthday I had to subside on olives and provitas for a month or two – didn’t do me any harm, in fact I slimmed down nicely enough to get some decent action.

Even if you’re not. It doesn’t give anyone the RIGHT to go up to anyone else and tell them not to chastise their children in public. Or criticise the fact that the baby that they’re wearing isn’t sleeping in the right position or that it’s drinking from a non BPA plastic free bottle. Or that it’s nappies won’t biodegrade over the next 200 hundred years (this is thumb suck figure – I’ve mentioned that I’m lazy to google). If people don’t wanna strap their kids in (and this is something that I’ve had to train myself to let go of) then so be it. The gene pool needs less idiots – and that might sound a little hard but raising children isn’t a picnic, not that picnics are catered events by on hand staff but you get what I mean. And if you don’t – can I refer you to my Suggestion Box? It’s the button on your top right hand corner and all you have to do is press CTRL ALT DEL.

Enough. Look around again –

Everyone is Going Through Something what matters are Two Things:

Area of Concern

and

Area of Influence

Let’s not be silly about it. Get your focus on and do the best you can with your bit.

People are People.

PS: These are not all my original thoughts but I’m selling them that way. Most of it is from a revered Elder in my immediate orbit so I’m claiming them as lessons learned. It’s still valid.

 

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A Silly Poem For Arsenic Hour

My darling children, from when you wake up

I take a sip from my steaming cup

Countdown begins to and Hour that will come

the seconds beat within my heart like a drum

the time of the day that I’ve learnt to dread

it makes the blood thunder in my head

Arsenic Hour

No one has power

A time for all Seasons

this Insanity has no reasons

From playing well together at around 3 pm

the crescendo is slow and it builds like REM

it doesn’t start with any particular note

perhaps it’s from one swirling dust mote

“It’s MINE!’ is the most oft repeated refrain

and I’m sure we’ll hear it again

and then it swiftly escalates to a blow

the thump on flesh where a bruise will show

whether you’re knocking each other with soft toys

or fighting about which one belongs to the boys

It’s upon us, this new Hour, we’ve reached Destination

(one that didn’t exist in my previous incarnation)

Through all your screaming and your tears

I’ve realized one of life’s greatest fears:

There is no one else I would pay

to see you this way.

The thin veneer of human I’ve managed to paste

over the crazy animal you are, is not a waste

as Time marches on I know you will learn

the voice that I use can be described as ‘stern’

and your little bums will be on fire

I am a Wooden Spoon for hire

Yes! That’s the anecdote to your poison

‘an eye for an eye’ we can all get our noise on!

My name is Mommy, hear me roar!

Feel my wrath! It’s gonna be sore!

Tuck you in, I will, like a robot be

I want to love you again tomorrow, don’t make me count to three.

Stupid Questions

I know, I know, there’s no such thing as a Stupid Question but I’m getting the feeling that there might just be a category for Unnecessary Questions. Even more so now that we have Google, I fear I might never have to ask a good question ever again, that the Q & A sections of seminars and talks on ‘How To’ and “What For” might forever become redundant as a result.

Since spending time with lots of people from all walks of life I get to interact and converse with a broad range of humans and have developed a high level of tolerance for many things, having to share a home with what I refer to as my uninterviewed housemates (my own children) they have come up with a few real gems of their own. I love me a good chinwag as much as the next garrulous  person but there are some questions that tend to make me want to climb the walls, here are few – feel free to add your own, if you have any.

  • What are you doing? This from someone who is watching me brush my teeth. Okay the someone is 6 years old and has only been brushing her own teeth for about 5 years but STILL it doesn’t look that much different 30 odd years down the line! I get asked this while I’m driving, eating breakfast, stuffing the washing machine, loading the tumble drier, swimming, walking, reading, doing downward facing dog etc.
  • Did you call me? As I hoarsely croak out a ‘yes’ after having yelled for an hour and then gone and stood next to the person and said their name 20 times in a normal voice.
  • Is that for me? A cup of coffee, one cup, that I feel I might deserve after a morning of working (earning money working), tending children and managed some kind of housework. Or a sandwich, slapped together, just like I like it and am about to take a bite or a sip. Clearly, ‘No, it’s mine’.
  • Really? I’m not going to pull my punches on this one – it’s a pet Hate! If I’ve introduced myself (which I’ve had to do a lot lately since we have relocated to a new town) and you’ve asked what I do (as small talk would dictate) and I answer you honestly with my career choice of the last 12 years and you ask me, “Really?” – the look in my eyes is murderous, it makes me want to answer, “No, not really, I lie about my job, I’m actually a serial killer – and you’re next.” Or, we don’t have any pets and you ask, “Do you have any pets?” and I say, “No, we don’t” and you say, “Really?” “Except for the pachyderm and the marsupial, no, none, none whatsoever!” – there’s a special place in hell for this way that people think is a way to continue a small talking conversation.
  • Did you come here? I have arrived at my destination, I am standing before you – are you being rude and alluding to the fact that I might have just had an orgasm on this spot?
  • Is that it? I say, “this is the sandwich I made for you” (yes I do sometimes cater for other people apart from my selfish self), ‘Is that it?” as you point to the only sandwich on the plate. “No, that is Winnie the Pooh that I had the 2 year old crap out for you”.
  • What do you call that stuff? This is usually accompanied with a gesticulation and a face. It is just you and I in an empty room and your gesticulation looks like you might be making candy floss in a sugar spinning machine but your face is saying that the stuff to which you are referring might be gross – so it’s not candy floss. What could it be? I don’t know what ‘stuff’ is so I would not know what to call it. Perhaps if you described it in words we could try and work it out.
  • Have you seen my dingus? No thank you and I don’t want to. Usually, I must admit, it’s my filthy mind and you might be referring to your cellular telephone but then gesticulate the universal language for telephonic handset not ask me if I’ve seen your thingie.
  • What’s for supper? Who cares, not you, since I made it and that’s what you’ll be having or not having since you’re a nasty bunch of fuss pots who live on cheese and crackers anyway. I hope one day that my children will write their own blogs on the spectacular culinary failure that their mother is – I’m not really, it’s just 2 underaged peoples opinion. According to them I haven’t made anything awesome for them to eat since they quit breast feeding.
  • Are you sleeping? Surely if there is no response to this question then it is in the affirmative. Repeatedly asking it louder while poking the ‘sleeper’ will prove that that person is awake – “Mom, you are such a liar” – I get that a lot, but I think they’re meaning that I like to to lie down making me more of a lie-er than a person prone to untruths. Attached to this question is usually it’s little brother asking, ‘Are you awake?’ – they have all their bases covered in the Stupid Question section.
  • Do you know where my (insert name of misplaced item here) is? My bog standard answer usually includes a cartoon character, I like to make it fun for the person who thinks I know where their stuff is. For example: “It’s swinging from my left eyelash playing Tarzan.” or “Why don’t you check down that hole in the garden, I think Bugs Bunny took it.” or a personal favourite, as I close my eyes and put my fingers to my temples, “Ooooooooommmmmmm, please Casper, if you can hear me, please tell us where the dingus is.”

These Questions will no doubt continue and I will get older and more crotchety about them, I wonder if Medical Aid will cover my high blood pressure medication for this obviously chronic condition? Really? What am I doing? I think I’ll go and have a nap, not sleep or be  awake and wait for the feeling to pass.

Lies We Tell Our Kids – dedicated to ericanexpress

  1. Christmas beetles are agents of Father Christmas so that he can watch you all the time.
  2.  I’m sure that animal next to the side of the road will just shake it off and be right as rain in a couple of minutes.
  3.  If you don’t eat fresh fruit and vegetables then you’ll get scurvy and die like a Pirate sea dog.
  4.  You can touch my laptop when you’re 9 years old.
  5.  If you don’t let me take that thorn/splinter out then it’s going to be taken up into your blood stream and puncture your lung.
  6.  If you stay up too late at night then the Naglug* is going to make you sick.
  7.  No, we can’t go and swim, you have to wait an hour until after you’ve eaten otherwise you’ll sink but you can run in the sprinklers if you want to.
  8. I need you to go and fetch me a leaf from that tree at the bottom of the Garden please and do it like you’re a snail, see how slowly you can move.
  9. If you pick up a tortoise it will pee on you and then die (this one back fired though because the next question to issue from the Eldest was, ‘What do tortoises drink Mom?’ Me: ‘Water’ Eldest,’Then they have to pee’ innocent face, blinking up at me, ‘ do they die every time they pee?’
  10. I’ve also told the Eldest that girls shouldn’t learn to read and write because it’s unnecassary for her to have these skills since girls grow up to have babies and clean the house. Paradoxical intention, has her reading and writing at the age of 5.
  11.  If you swallow a watermelon pip a baby will grow in your tummy. This was awkward when the Eldest asked if Daddy put his seed in my mouth when we announced that we were expecting the Youngest.
  12. 5 am is still Night Time and we should ALL be sleeping – this one doesn’t work.
  13. Injections don’t hurt and antibiotics taste like sweets – this one only works once.
  14. If you aren’t buckled up in a car then it won’t start and then we can’t go anywhere.
  15. When we feel they’ve watched too much tv for a day then we tell them there’s a power failure – how sad that at the ages of 2 and 6 they know what a power failure is.
  16. And when we want to ride our bicycles somewhere we tell them that there is no fuel in the car.
  17. ‘Sweetheart, that is a beautiful song, please can you sing it to me again? Mommy loves the sound of your voice in her ears’
  18. ‘Please close the door behind you, Mommy and Daddy are going to have a nap.’
  19. If we put up Christmas lights then they’re going to short out and burn the house down and we’ll have to live in the car. Ok, technically not a lie since one of them did get a little hot and start melting the plastic needles on our fake pine tree but it stops the nagging once a day.
  20. Nothing that you see on tv is real – except Oprah. And if you want that Barbie then I suggest you give her a call and ask her to hook you up.

And now? Okay so my parenting relationship with my children  isn’t based entirely on trust but it’s so much fun and my children have the imaginations of inventors and people who can change the world without putting too much effort into it.

We’re all going to grow up with issues and since some of these lies are from our own parents and aunts and uncles (see if you can spot the Vintage Lies). I believe that they only sculpted us into the amazing adults we are today – with trust issues, but amazing nonetheless.

*Night Air or Light

I is for Impossible

I is for Impossible – I have a good friend that says he prefers ‘impossible’ to ‘difficult’ because ‘difficult looks like hard work’. Kids are sometimes impossible and sometimes difficult. We have our work cut out for us.

I is for Impi – now a green dinosaur used for entertainment purposes but it used to be foot soldier in the Zulu army.

I is for Issues – if you have no issues then your children will have them all for you. Same if you have a lot of issues then your children will have issues too but not the same ones as you. Issues need tissues.

I is for Insanity – it hereditary, you get it from your offspring. One only needs to spend about 5 years with a new person to realise that they’re not all there. It’s up to the parent to collect as many marbles for their children as one can – of course, just so that the aforementioned children can lose them again.

I is for Illicit – if you want your kids to know something hide it from them. At first you may have to tell them that you’ve hidden something to whet their curiosity. I like to pretend I have a terrible secret – ‘I stole you from some nice rich people’ is a favourite – it makes them appreciate you more, I’m sure.

I is for Ill – the worst kind of offspring – very high maintenance and demanding. Best to try and keep them healthy.

I is for Innocent – children are often described as innocent looking – that’s where it stops and we all know you can’t go by looks

I is for Impatient – what children are for everything! Food, beverages, fun stuff, to go somewhere, to stop you from singing, to stop you from dancing, for the television to be put on, for the dvd to start, for the sun to shine, for it to rain, etc. To change their clothes every 20 minutes (whether they can dress themselves or not) – Children are Impatient – and society doesn’t help with its ‘instant gratification’ philosophy and practise. You just keep breathing – slowly with your eyes closed, lead by example.

I is for Icky – I’ve touched on this before – Children are Icky – from the tops of their cradle crapped skulls to the tips of their oddly shaped and always needing trimming toe nails – go on deny it.

I is for Irk – if you’ve never been irked before try watching The Royal Wedding all day while holding down a Mom Job.

I is for Interesting – this Mom Job might get mundane in it’s repetiveness but it’s always interesting, ones offspring are free variables and even though you’re going through the motions they’re not, it will always be different to what it was yesterday – thank heavens!

I is for Ischial Crest – fancy medical term for Hip – you know, where you carry them until they get too heavy.

I is for Intuition – so you had Woman’s Intuition before you had kids, check out the revised model: Mother’s Intuition! Be prepared to grow eyes in the back of your head, so that you can drive, hand out snacks, change the music and develop X Ray Vision – you will know when they stick their tongues out at you because you can see through walls , Hearing like an Eagle that allows you to know if it’s a ‘good quiet’ or a ‘bad quiet’. A Sense of Smell that can sniff out the stench of a stinky bum up to 5 rooms away. A Supersonic Voice that can be raised and heard if used correctly in conjunction with a Wooden Spoon. And a Healing Touch – seriously, sometimes just holding the little people can take away the pain or break a fever.  Of course these powers only pertain to your own charges and they can’t be transferred for cash but they come in handy nonetheless.

I is for Immune System – this could be included in the super power list because I’ve never known a mother to get sick – not like fathers get sick anyway and certainly not like kids get sick. Immune System – cultivate stronger ones by letting your kids be gross and sticky.

I is for Injuries – kids get hurt, we can only prevent a few of the daily accidents. A First Aid course is never wasted. Kids also heal fast – they have amazing regenerative powers and don’t underestimate the element of Drama that is a part of any proper Owee.

I is for Illustrious – imagine being famous for being a Mom. Having roses strewn at ones feet at the end of each day as you bow to the foot lights after supper and then collect your accolades after all the laundry is done. I suppose Mothering is an Illustrious Career – it’s just invisible and will only be appreciated once your children notice there’s no one to spread their sandwiches for them.

I is for Imminent – Offspring Grow Up, it’s a Fact of Life and it happens faster than you think.

I is for Immature – sometimes it’s not only the inexperienced people in the family that have this trait. One can only hope that it is fleeting for the Adults.

I is for If – yes, it’s an illusion and it’s for children. I love playing “If’ with my kids, “Mom, can I have a TV in my room?” Me: “Sure, IF you grow up and get a decent job and have a nice house, then I’m sure you’ll be able to afford a TV in your room”. “Mom, have you seen my shoes/bag/doll/teddy/car/makeup?” Me: “IF you can’t see them with your healthy young eyes then how can I seem them with my used up old eyes?” “Mom, I think you don’t love me.” Me, “IF you think that, it’s probably true.” “Mom, Stop It!” Me: “IF I stop it then you won’t know what being teased feels like and you’ll grow up without a sense of humour.”

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