Monday, January 18, 2016

Things Mom Got Right & Wrong

Dear Little B,

It's me again, well you, well bigger you. I wanted to take some time to write to you about one of the most influential people in your life, (believe it or not you stubborn brat) Mom. So much of what she says to you goes in one ear and out the other. Don't roll your eyes as I know you are doing. It's just you and.... well you here. You know you do it.

Here are some things to remember.  Mom is your Mother, that being said there are some things I know you don't think about. She is a woman. One who had dreams and ambition and hopes of her own and put them aside to accept the title of Mother. She was you once upon a time. At one point in time she was in high school dating that guy that Grandpa didn't like. She was pretty bad ass, sneaking Dad out the back door so they wouldn't get caught. She used to ride on the back of a motorcycle. Face it you are not even that ballsy. 

She spent a lot of years learning to be the woman that yells at you to clean your room or makes you feel 2" tall because although she may not have heard the words you said, she knows by the voice you said them in you are lying about something. She knows you more than you know yourself and she's been through it all, believe me. Learn to talk to her. She will never put you down or not believe in you if you are honest with her.  It's something that I hate I didn't learn until many years older than you. Not only was this the cause of more time away from Mom than I wish, it is also the cause of every phone call with her being 3-4 hours long. For her sake and ours, open up to her. She is far smarter than you give her credit for.

There are a lot of things she got right. She found an amazing man and held onto him for dear life. Things between Mom & Dad have not always been great, but you will never believe that because it's not what you see. They have struggled a lot, but through it all they worked together. Love is worth that. I would love to say you are going to find that kind of a guy but the verdict is still out this many years later. If old me can make any sense to young me, take their lead. They don't always agree but they always work it out. You will save yourself a lot of heartbreak if you can take this seed to heart and let it bloom.

Do you want to know another thing she got right? Walk upstairs and look in the oriental basket. Go look at her book shelf. Do you see that silver bowl with the ball of yarn in it next to the chair? With all the things she has to do... work, keep 5 daughters straight, grandchildren (depending on when this reaches you), cleaning, cooking etc.... she still finds time to do the things that make her happy. Dad's no different. Go in the garage and look at the railroad or downstairs to the darkroom. Look at that harpsichord for heavens sake. I can't stress further how important something like this is to help you stay happy and balanced. Find a hobby, something you like to do (and I know you like to do a whole lot of things) and make sure you take the time to make you happy. Do all the things you are supposed to do and some of the things you want to do. Create something. Something you can look at and say "I DID THAT!".  All in all, it doesn't matter who is proud of you except you. You owe it to us to allow us that.

I'm sure there are so many more things that she got right but here's one last gem that ties into the next one. Do you ever see her wear rolled up cut off jeans and bobby socks? Are those saddle shoes still in her closet? I know you'd know because you are the only one in the house that raids her shoes because you are the only one with feet big enough. The answer is obviously no. There is a reason for that. Enjoy the fad of the day or more rightly knowing who you/I am the ANTI fad. Those Doc Martins and shaved head are fun while you have them but know they stay where they belong, in the '80s. I know you want me to tell you that you didn't turn into a long haired hippie tree hugging freak like those Earth Day band wagon jumpers, but if it is any consolation I guess that is the ANTI fad now so I've stayed true to character.

Ok, I know you snarky brat. You have been waiting for that list of some of the things that Mom got wrong. I will touch on them a bit here though I am sure there are so many things I will forget as with the brief list before.

The hair. I know I mentioned it before but it begs repeating on the what she got wrong list. You've done everything you can think of with it. Colors that only belong on a rainbow or South American parrot, lengths that society says only belong on an 18 yr old boy at boot camp.  Every time you do something new to it, you get chewed out and know you don't get to go out as much as your other sisters because of fear of others opinions. Let me tell you this baby girl, embrace it. Color it. Wear what you will. Soon enough you are going to have to set out in the grown up world. You are going to have to compromise your artistic style and become what others want to see so you can get that job or that rental. Enjoy every bit of what you are while you can. Before you know it, you will have no choice but to look presentable to the masses on the outside.

Engleburt Humperdink. Ok, this one Mom got WAY wrong. To put it plainly, you know how much you laugh because she thinks EH is the greatest? Well you are right to laugh. He's not cool, he's old his music sucks. To you.  Just remember these criticisms and commit any comments you have to memory because I can promise you in the not too distant future you will be hearing the same thing about Robert W. Smith, Motley Crue, Axel Rose and many more because they are not "Justin" or "Harry".  Just remember every thought you have on EH you are going to have to hear from the mouths of your daughters. It won't always be awful though. Its fun when your kids go through a "retro" phase (which they all do, like you did when you went through that 50s phase and played teen angle over and over) and start playing music you listened to. I guess technically I should say music that you listen to since you are actively discovering your music tastes.

Ok, here's one last thing she got wrong. Honestly, you know those geometry classes with Mrs. C you are taking? Or that Humanities class you have that you almost never show up for? Mom and Dad are going to go fight for you to graduate because of that class by the way. (Why do you have to be such a D-Bag all the time?) Well, the long and short of it is that you will NEVER need those classes. They lied. You won't ever need to know about the most common stone in North America or the gestation period of an elephant. Unfortunately they won't realize and start tailoring school around things you will need for a few decades so in the mean time, what Mom & Dad may not have said but I'm sure they are thinking is "Suck it up". You are going to have to do a lot of things in life that you really don't want to and won't need later in life, but you have to suck it up and get those things done to get what you will need. (in this instance it's a diploma but you can extrapolate this to fit many circumstances that will come up.)

The long and the short of things here to remember, Mom's been there and believe it or not she's probably done that. Give her the benefit of the doubt. Go out of your way for her because she has most definitely done that for you. She won't always be there for you, while she is let her know how much she is appreciated.

I will however leave you with one of my favorite songs today. You should appreciate it, our tastes don't change that much over the many years I am writing to you from. Its a little something to look forward to.

With Honesty,

Bigger Little B

Queen - Bohemian Rhapsody
REM - Man In The Moon
Meatloaf - You Took the Words Right Outta My Mouth
Tool - 10000 days
Meatloaf - Paradise by the Dashboard Light
Bette Midler - Wind Beneath My Wings
AC/DC - Big Balls
Tesla - Love Song
Megadeth - A Tout Le Monde
Motley Crue - Home Sweet Home
N'Sync - Bye Bye Bye
Les Miserables - On My Own
Les Miserables - Stars
Mark Dinning - Teen Angel
Billy Boyd - The Last Goodbye

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