My Kid Expects More From Me (Spoiler Alert! He’s In For A Let Down)

I’ve been getting telltale signs over the last week that Luke (5) is raising his expectations of me. This is quite a conundrum because I am proud to be a champion of mediocrity and yet there I am, time and time again, encouraging him to improve on everything he does. 

Last Friday I helped him pick out his clothes and as he started getting dressed I headed for my closet. 
“I’m going to pick out my clothes now,” I told him.
“Okaaaay,” he said in a sing-song voice. “Do not EVEN tell me what it is. I can’t wait to be amaaaazed.”
I stopped dead in my tracks. Since when have I ever come out of my closet wearing something that amazed him, or anyone else for that matter? I wear sweat pants every day and I’m pretty sure he was four-years-old before he ever saw me in a dress. I’ll never forget his surprise. “Mom, YOU have a princess suit?”
Afraid he was getting his hopes up for something that was not to be, I told him, “It’s going to be running pants (I hesitated) and a T-shirt.”
“Are you going running?”
“No.” (Slightly annoyed)
“Ohhh, all right then. Dad runs in his.”
With that twist of the knife I went into my closet, closed the door behind me and mumbled under my breath, “At least I can tie my own shoes.”
Then, this morning after hitting snooze on my alarm for the third time I heard his big, flat feet hit the floor as he got out of his bed and headed for my room. The first thing out of his mouth was, “Really, Mom? Free times?” 
He climbed into my bed and we snuggled for a while before having to get him ready for school. Per our usual routine, we argued about the direction he combs his hair and his disdain for blue jeans. Before I knew it he was out the door and headed to school. He will only be there for three hours, but I miss him already. 
What I don’t miss, however, is having my outfit critiqued. 
Billie Jean King is a handsome woman, dammit and I’m not one bit ashamed of copying her swagger. 
This brings me back to my conundrum, though. Is it right for me to expect him to strive for perfection at everything he does while I sleep late and, from time to time, sleep in the outfit I’m going to wear the next day? (Shut up. You know its brilliant.)
Yes, of course it is. 
He’s five-years-old and therefore still crappy at everything!! That may sound harsh, but before judging me try making a resume for your five-year-old. You can’t. It’s hysterical. They can’t do anything. 
Parental win. End conundrum.

Deep Thoughts

I’m really blessed to not be battling the problem of perfectionism. I’ve been excelling at mediocrity since college, but if I had mastered it earlier in life my Mom may have said something like, “Nothing’s too so-so for my daughter.” And she’d be right. I’m very thankful to have dodged the perfectionism bullet. Being okay in several areas is definitely superior to being really great in any one area. It’s probably a fact.

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My Super Sweet Sixteen (times two)

I would first of all like to thank everyone for the kind birthday wishes. You have all helped make my 32nd birthday very special. However, all of this talk of growing older has really gotten me thinking about my own immortality. (I did NOT say immorality.) Everyone dies eventually. It’s a fact. So why not prepare myself and my loved ones for this event by planning my own funeral ahead of time.

Here’s how I want it to go down. In the event that Kevin Costner goes before I do, I would like comedian Ralphie May to do my eulogy. Who am I kidding? Heart disease will take him any day. Let’s go with any current member of Jersey Shore: The New Class. I would like the subject matter to focus on the concept of mediocrity in several areas being superior to greatness in one or two areas. That is after all, my life’s theme. The eulogy should be devoid of any of the stupid things I’ve done in my life, specifically the time  I drove backward through a car wash because I thought you paid AFTERWARD, and the super slow head-on collision that almost occurred during that time.

I would like someone in the back of the room to be making balloon animals, while another person sketches caricatures of anyone seen crying. Cigars will be passed out, and anyone refusing to smoke will be asked to leave. Everyone smokes. End of story. Also, I would like for all of the chairs to be secretly fitted with whoopee cushions. This is really starting to sound like a fun party, is it not? I really hate to miss it.

Please don’t think I’m being morbid. I just find it imperative that people make their end of life wishes known ahead of time. I’m thirty-two now. I pretty much have one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel. When my time comes, my loved ones will be well equipped with the information they need to get that party started.

Clowns can really put the fun- in funeral.

New Year’s Disillusion

The presents have been opened, toys have been played with, new shoes have been worn, and the positive Christmas energy has been taken out to the curb along with the tree. Enter your worst enemy, the New Year’s resolution. For centuries we have celebrated the beginning of a new year by setting a goal for ourselves, and for centuries we have failed to meet that goal. There are a few people out there, who set a specific goal and achieve it, and those people are called assholes, but I digress.

F.M. Knowles said, “He who breaks a resolution is a weakling; He who makes one is a fool.” Setting a daunting and unrealistic goal will only serve as a reminder of what a loser you are. So, instead of resolving to lose fifty pounds and stop drinking in 2011, try setting an easily attainable, or vague goal. If you aspire to wake up before noon most of the time, work ~40 hours a week, or change your underwear daily, you will find a feeling of accomplishment when you achieve, and even surpass your goal. Before long you will be drunk, overweight, and unsuccessful, but with a confidence level usually reserved for the captain of the football team. My point is, if we strive for mediocrity, we can all be winners.

This year I resolved to accept the things I could not change, rite bettur, and stay foxy. I accomplished all three January 1st, 2010. Take that, world! But, what if I had failed? True, I wouldn’t have had that “king of the world” feeling for the remaining 364 ¼ days of the year, but I wouldn’t have let my failures define me or dictate whether I had a good 2010.

I’ve yet to determine my New Year’s resolution for 2011, but rest assured they will rival last year’s in quality and importance. Hopefully, I will achieve them by next December, but if I don’t, that’s ok too. My only plans are to be a little older, a little braver, a little happier, and still none the wiser.