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The “Real” Me

I attended my daughter’s preschool  back to school night this evening.  This means, getting to know a new group of parents, some of which have their oldest in preschool.  New parents always worry me because they may not have given up their ideals and sanity yet.  They say admirable things like, “How do we know what our kids learned in school today so I can ask my child about it?”  I respect this, but the easy way out is “what did you do, what did you learn and what was your favorite part”?  They are still trying to do everything right (bless their hearts).  I have to say, all of the moms I met seem very nice and down to earth, but time will tell who is as off-balanced as me.  I have decided to show them the “real me” as early as possible in hopes of bringing them to the dark-side of reality parenting.  Or maybe they are already there…

Last summer, there was an evening when I had too much to liquid fun and I was acting like a child.  I was throwing food at my friends (trying to start a food fight, not out of malice) and generally acting silly.  My husband was getting irritated with me (how could this be?!) .  I turned to my group of friends and proclaimed, “This is the real me!”.  I will never live that quote down, but I have also embraced it in many ways.  Here’s more about the “real” me.  Yes, it’s another list of confessions.

  • I loathe the idea of owning a dog.  My kids want one very badly and I am dead set against it.  When I hear dog, I think hair, fleas, chewed up furniture, doggie breath and more responsibility.  It is a threat to my precarious life balance.  Don’t get me wrong, I like dogs – when they belong to other people!  I am also not a huge fan of overnight dog guests, but have made exceptions for my dearest friends. (Devon – I am high-fiving you right now).
  • I let my kids eat food they have dropped on the ground (there’s no dog to clean it up).  Correction, I tell my kids they have to eat what they drop, because I am not giving them more.  Now, this is only in my house, when the floors are reasonably clean, and maybe outside if it’s not too public of an area…
  • I love the idea of playdates that involve cocktails.  I NEVER drink when I am responsible for someone elses children AT ALL and I never have more than one if my husband is out-of-town.  This is not a joke and if you drink while watching my kids, you will learn about mama bear.  But, if you bring your little one over in the afternoon and you’re staying and want to have a beer with me, that is my kind of playdate!
  • I am perfectly comfortable letting my children’s teachers be responsible for their learning.  I will do all the homework and read to them, but frankly, I am exhausted at night and do not feel compelled to do extra credit as a mom.  I am glad there are professionals to ensure my kids are brilliant.
  • I recycle, but I drive a diesel SUV, do not compost, never made my own baby food, use disposable diapers and pull-ups and loved having drugs to ease the pain of labor.
  • I bake the bread for church, but mostly to make up for how often I miss Mass (meaning mostly absent) and to see a friend who I never get to see unless it is baking time.
  • I don’t like cold water so I spend more time watching my kids swim than swimming with them.
  • I cannot do math.  Period.

What’s the real you?  You can tell me, I promise to use a fake name when I blog about it! 😉

  1. August 26, 2010 at 6:32 am

    I like this post… a lot of it “resembles” me.

    I love dogs, too, but don’t want one. We had one before and that was enough. I love cats too, so cute and fluffy, I but don’t want one of them either.

    I don’t drink alcohol (period) but love the idea of playdates that involve herbal tea.

    My kids or 28 and 31… enough said about teachers.

    I’m a firm believer in recycling EVERYTHING. Heaven forbid my husband to put a ‘dirty’ can of tuna in the garbage before he “rinses and drip-dries it.

    I walk more than anything. That’s probably because I don’t have a driver’s license.

    I don’t like cold water either and the sight of my husband splashing cold water on his face first thing in the morning is enough to make me shiver.

    I can’t do math either. Period. But I love learning languages. Born and raised in a French community, I learned English at an early age, took 2 years of Spanish in High School, 2 more years of it later, learned SEE (Signed Exact English) and ASL (American Sign Language) and am now a volunteer “interpreter” for church services and other events.

    I took one year of Biblical Hebrew in University though the only word I remember is Shalom (peace). I also learned Shona, one of the several dialects in Zimbabwe before heading out on the first of 2 short-term missions with World Vision. I remember Good morning, afternoon and evening, and if I think real hard, perhaps numbers 1 – 10.

    I miss Africa 😦

    And that’s the real me 🙂

  2. August 26, 2010 at 9:08 am

    Great post. I never thought I’d agree with the dog thing until I had my daughter. Now we have two dogs and a baby and every day I tell my dogs, “we love you but you are IN THE WAY” Only I’m paraphrasing becasue I don’t use such polite language.

  3. michellekthooft
    August 26, 2010 at 1:24 pm

    Hmmm, the real me. I am in my forties and just barely figuring it out. I home-schooled my kids, my girls, but didn’t do a perfect job of it. Our boy is 7 and I just registered him for school today. The girls had each other, he has no one but busy teenage sisters and Mom. So as we were “touring” the empty grade school where he will be attending, I was awash with memories of my lonely, frightening childhood. I got my identity from that grade school and feel like I’m just shedding it now and finding out who I really am.

    So I was getting emotional about it, sending him there, when the thought occurred to me that his childhood is not mine. He has TWO parents who communicate with him, enjoy him, spend time with him, LOVE him. I think that makes all the difference in the world. So we’re sending him to school. I battle with the home-schooled indoctrination demons screaming at me, but I’m choosing to let him have the best of both worlds.

    I love wine. Second thing about me. I read your post about your breaking up with wine and I hope it never happens to me. 🙂 I think after being in fundie-land for so long, it’s kind of a freedom thing for me. I can drink wine and God still loves me. Some of my church-going friends might judge me, but whatever.

    Friends are flipping hard to find. Third thing I’m finding out.

    My garden is lovely and too big. But it will probably always be too big because I can never do something small. I have to knit a alpine sweater with 2 colors and patterns the first time I pick up knitting needles. No scarves here. It’s just the way I am. So the garden is too big.

    I cant’ seem to exercise to save my life.

    I love watching movies, especially with my kids. The commentary is priceless.

    We own a dog, eleven cats (outdoors), five horses, and last time I counted, eight chickens.(there’s a vagabond fox around). But I drew the line at mice. NO MICE!!

    I recycle, compost, eat locally grown & organic every chance I can, watched Food Inc and practically threw up, but I also drive a gas-guzzling Suburban. I want to get a bumper sticker made that says “bio-diesel wanna be.”

    But generally I don’t like bumper stickers. I have one. It says, “Love Wins.”

    And I love to make bread. But only with my Kitchen Aid.

    So that is a weency tiny version of who I really am.

  4. August 26, 2010 at 1:43 pm

    Oh, interesting topic! You should let people know who you are, right? I’m torn on dog issue. I loved having a dog as a kid, but owning one as an adult seems like a lot of work.

    And here’s a big thing for me to admit: I recycle most things, but sometimes I just can’t bear to clean out the Suave shampoo and conditioner bottles and I throw them away.

    Also, the real me isn’t as quiet as I may seem at first. I just need to see people a lot before I feel comfortable enough to open up. 🙂

  5. Stacey
    August 26, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    Real me-
    I will run to the gym to lose weight and also stay in shape-
    I will then walk over to a coffee house and get a white mocha (non – fat) which is an oxymoron and then pick out a pastry…. So basically – the run was for nothing-

    By the way – why get a dog when you have a husband and two kids to walk, feed, clean up their @#$@#$ etc. etc. I already feel like a have a dog(s)

    Hugs – Paige you rock

  6. Stacey
    August 26, 2010 at 3:57 pm

    By the way… ” I love the real Paige… ” she is the best
    I love when she comes over to crash on my couch and tell my husband she is not leaving ….. I love when she throws food and tells everyone that this is the “real her..”
    what can i say… I am a “real me fan…”

  7. August 27, 2010 at 5:53 am

    Thank you for the laughter so early in my morning. The “real” you seems pretty great to me. Diane

  8. zeusiswatching
    August 28, 2010 at 9:44 am

    Math is terrible thing.

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