You know what I’m discovering, more and more, as my children grow older?
I bet you can guess the usual suspects…the unconditional love, the pride, the awe as they learn new things, the fact that parenting is a balancing act and that, as parents, there’s only so much that you can do for your child.
Yes, there’s all of those things.
But mostly, I’m discovering that I don’t much like living with smaller versions of myself. The majority of the time it’s fine, I should add—lest anyone feel compelled to contact the Department; the elements outlined above cause me to swell and burst with happiness. However, those moments when one—or all three—holds up that mirror that reflects my less attractive personality traits remind me with shocking clarity that I have ugliness within. I work to hide it from the world and my darlings flaunt it in my face. It’s terrifying, I have to be honest.
History sometimes feels evanescent, have you noticed? Times goes on, memories fade and the past flickers like a faulty light bulb. I forget that I must have been revolting to my own parents. I didn’t see the work they put into me, the excruciating amounts of time they spent to ensure that the yukky parts of me, the aspects that are socially unacceptable, are not screamed or shown in public.
But the past is fleeting only until I speak to my mum on the phone and relay the trying moments Hubster and I have been through. I hear her chuckling on the phone and I realise that history doesn’t evaporate. It repeats, and repeats in ways that insist we learn from it. And that’s kind of cool.
So when I’m confronted by those small versions of myself, when they’re annoying me, ignoring me, or terrifying me with my inner ugly on display, I vow to not give in or give up. I am working on the future, by learning from the past.