Monday, 21 June 2010
"OUT WITH THE ANGER, IN WITH THE CALM"
So parents. Got to love them I suppose – social norms and all that. But SHIT they can make it difficult to communicate with ‘em! Now, this really is said with love. The mother – bless her sweet heart, slaved away for most of her adult life, bringing up seven kids. And a bloody good job she’s done too (see picture of me for proof). And in her senior years, it seems she has taken it upon herself to retrieve some repayment for said invested time and effort. Her means? Testing and trying her poor patience-less daughter to her limits of tolerance and ability to hold her tongue. Yes, I’m more than willing to fetch you a cup of tea. Cook your dinner? Certainly! Run to the shop for you? Why not?! Any whim your heart desires, sure mummy – you deserve it. (All of the above is not meant to be sarcastic, honest!) But one million general questions about general things per 30 minutes? Asking me to repeat everything that comes out of my mouth? Simply not listening to me when I speak to you, including answers to direct questions? Well. I’m only human, world. A mere mortal.
Now the good news is that I’ve been brought up with a firm hand, gloved in the importance of respect for one’s elders. So I’d never perform a rendition of those fowl kids you see on the bus:
- Foul kid chucks a skittle at a stranger
- Mother tells fowl kid to cease and desist.
- Foul kid screams at top of lungs “Fuck off Mummy!”
Instead, I express my quiet rage with a pause, a deep breath (assuming the rage isn’t stifling my breathing ability) and a response as close to a whisper as I can possibly get away with. I continue to whisper until she stops asking me to repeat myself or until I have suitably calmed myself – whichever happens first. And on it goes. My new mantra (borrowed from generous sister Jenz) “Out with the anger, in with the calm”.
But to be fair, she, along with all reasonable parents, can pretty much get away with anything. Lets be honest, if just one of your parents asked for a cheque of the sum of their expenses (on you) from just your first year of life, you’d be stumped. Unless you’re a junior Rockefeller out here (in which case, let’s be friends!). And money aside, the emotional support, generally sculpting their life around you, the constant and immediate willingness to throw themselves in front of a face-eating-chimpanzee (they exist you know) to save you. The list is vast. Unless your parent is one of those who’d reply to earlier foul kid on the bus: “Fuck you too, you little shit!”
So I’ll wrap this up, and save you from a cheesy-as conclusion about putting the parentals first and love them as much as they love you... (though ‘tis all true). Instead, I’ll leave you with this: my mum looks at me in the face and refers to me using any one of the names of my six siblings at random (and yes I have brothers), before asking me for the sixth time to complete the errand that I’m visibly currently carrying out. And still, I love her. It’s a crazy world.