*she said sarcastically*
I now have a very light relationship with my parents. I’m not sure how one even has a real relationship when they are told that they only want to be heard from if they can remain non-controversial. Which means, only speak to us if you agree with everything.
But, I have to take the boys back to IN, and I stay at Grandma’s to crash for the night before going back to GA the next morning. I don’t stay in IN. And, Grandma lives next to Mom and Dad.
I’ve really attempted to not insert my opinions. Heck, I’ve even kept my mouth shut about facts. Because facts seem to have a liberal bias at their house. Soooo…what is there to safely talk about while they preach about Donald Trump being the best thing to happen since sliced bread? What is there to say when they grill my 9 yr old about why he doesn’t go to church? (“because I won’t give him the car keys” isn’t met with as much laughter as I had hoped)
So, friends! I can talk about my friends! This is good right? Ann is my best friend, they know this. Great, so far so good. Ann got me a Christmas present! I am on a roll, nothing “controversial” here. It was amazingly thoughtful. I had told her, a long time ago, how much I loved Barbie as a kid. And, how because there were always babies in my parents house, I was never allowed to keep Barbie’s shoes or accessories. Because the “baby might choke”. So for Christmas Ann brought me in a big box…with a Barbie, and 3 outfits, and a closet full of accessories. Probably 15 pairs of shoes, sunglasses, necklaces, purses, everything.
I finished my story, and my mother said “that’s ridiculous. You lie. You had dozens of pairs of Barbie shoes. We never got rid of them, you always lost them or didn’t take care of them. It wasn’t that great of a gift.”
So, I just said “well, I thought it was a cool gift anyway” and she said “fine, but just know, you always had the shoes.”
I dropped it. But, then I had a 12 hour drive back home with my husband. I remember. I remember crying as the threw the little stuff away. I remember my dad telling me if I didn’t shut up he’d give me “a reason to cry.” (which i always thought was stupid, obviously, I have a reason to cry,hence why i am crying) or, alternatively, telling me if I didn’t shut up, then we could just throw away all my Barbies. I remember, the choking explanation was used for why we weren’t allowed to have Legos either. I remember deciding the Barbies in swimsuits weren’t worth getting because we couldn’t get them wet, because mom said it would ruin their hair. I remember the Barbies were stored in this neon pink suit case, it was a hard case, it was little. Not a real suit case. I remember it had purple latches, and a purple handle, and the latches slid closed sideways, they didn’t flip up. I remember you had to make sure there was no tulle or satin or anything else not entirely within when you tried to close it, or it wouldn’t latch. I remember my favorite dress for Barbie was an orange-peach strapless column dress…it was satin and had a green velvet trim around the top. And, sewn to the waist were like, triangles of tulle, staggered and layered, so the tulle poofed out and had a bunch of different pointy ends, just shorter than the satin. I can clearly remember all of this…but I’m completely wrong about the shoe thing? And, believe me, if there is one thing I’m rarely wrong about, it’s shoes.
So, I started thinking back to the things that I’ve said as an adult that piss off my parents. And, I figured it out.
If I remember anything positive, they say that is exactly how it happened, they can’t believe i remember, I have such a great memory.
ANYTHING negative though is met with “no we didn’t”, “that’s a lie”, “you can’t remember that, you were too young”, “why are you always trying to pick a fight”
Even if it isn’t anything “bad”. I didn’t mention the shoe thing to accuse them of doing anything wrong. I didn’t tell my friend to play the martyr. It was more of a wistful memory “I would have liked that, but the baby would have choked on the shoes, so I couldn’t have it”. That was it. I didn’t attack my parents, I didn’t ridicule, I didn’t say it was stupid. I just said “I wanted this, and it didn’t work out”.
Any memory I have that isn’t positive is a lie, according to them. That I made it up because I want them to look bad. Yes…because I’m really sitting here going “you know what would really make my parents look bad to my 35 yr old friend? if I tell her how I wasn’t allowed to have Barbie shoes when I was 6.”
How can ALL of my negative memories be wrong, while all my positive ones are exactly correct? I feel like I’m pretty fucked up for someone who had such a perfect childhood.
I’m going somewhere with this, I think. But, I’m at 900 words and I need to go walk the dog before the thunderstorms/tornados are completely in the area.