This is a short post because I am obviously a Very Busy Person, and also I am caught up in a Netflix documentary about a bank heist and I can’t stop thinking about it long enough to put something really cohesive and deep together.
I got into an argument with someone today. Those of you that know me know how deeply unsurprising this fact is. I could argue with a lampost, and I probably will end up doing exactly that one day, when Moe gets tired of my shit and leaves me and I end up living in a dark apartment with a lot of cactuses (cacti?) as pets because I cannot even be trusted to care for a cat or a gerbil.
The disagreement was about Moe’s daughter. More specifically, what “terminology” I use when referring to myself in relation to her (does that sound as confusing as it actually is, or does it make you roll your eyes and think “who fucking cares?” because, yeah, same).
But you and I are amongst the minority of people who think this when it comes to fascinating subjects like Adult Co-Parenting Terminology.
The point here is that human beings are :
1 – nosey – and –
2 – bored
On several (at least four) occasions, people have referred to the small person who lives with me as my daughter. If it’s a store clerk or a waitress, I don’t bother correcting them because that would encourage conversation and questions, two things that I loathe equally. But when it’s someone I know, and who knows me, and who knows that this tiny individual has a mother who is lovely and amazing and adores her children, I feel like I have to take issue with that. First of all, I didn’t push her (or anything – *shudder*) out of my body. Secondly, I am not a mother. I don’t want to be a mother, and if I did want to be a mother to anyone other than my furry Beast of a dog, I would have no problem being referred to as one. Since, (see above) I would have pushed a human being out of my body (nothankyou) and thus would have earned that title.
I don’t call myself her stepmother, either, because it has so many bad connotations. I don’t call myself her anything. I just exist as a (half-functioning) adult who makes sure she eats food and doesn’t fall over suddenly and has some good times doing the things that kids are supposed to do. I don’t make or enforce rules very often, I don’t raise my voice, and I keep my nose out of parenting issues unless they are immediate and I am the only person around to take action (Hey google! Child has a fever, should I place them in a tub of ice?).
I still don’t know if my approach is wrong or right or somewhere in between. So far, it. seems to be working to everyone’s advantage. Moe’s daughter rarely falls down unexpectedly, I know now that a fever requires only children’s Tylenol (NOT ADULT’S EVER) and some rest, and, (bonus!) I have yet to deal with cleaning up barf. She and I co-exist peacefully, and I hope she grows up seeing me as an adult who cares about her, wants the best for her, and who is cheering her parents on from the sidelines, ready to step in if required. Like an awkward, scrawny, adult relay-racer.
I’m sure, when the teenage years hit us straight in our unsuspecting faces with an aggressive uppercut, this dynamic will shift. If karma actually exists, I will be paid back in full for the total roaring asshole that I was to my parents as a teenager, and I will look back on this blog entry fondly, laughing at my own naivety through a haze of rage-fueled tears.
I will end this now because I just caught myself staring at the wall thinking about how many episodes might be left until we find out who was really behind the bank heist. It involves a collar bomb.
A collar bomb!