It's my job

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

The duties of being a parent and the paybacks.

I try quite often to remind my children just what my job description consists of as far as being a parent. I remind them that my main goal is to make their lives miserable and secondly to embarrass them. I had been reminded quite often while they were growing up that I had done a very good job at both.

Probably the most embarrassing thing that I do is to run while in their presence. They are all constantly telling me not to. I have to to catch up with them, because they were all blessed with long legs and walk so much faster than I do. If I need to quickly get out of the way of traffic, they tell me not to run. Would they prefer it if I were to get hit? I won't ask them that question.

So how about the many times that they have caused me a bit of embarrassment. The many times that my face turned beet red and I had to hang my head? Have they forgotten those moments? Well let me refresh their memories and enlighten others on just what I had to put up with while they were growing up.

It starts with the time that I had gotten them to the car following a trip to the old Sernetts store. I turned to put one of them into the car and she proudly showed me a Rubics Cube key chain that she had walked out of the store with, without paying. She had no idea that she had done anything wrong. She was perhaps 4 and had no idea that she had not just won the lottery but had broken the law. That same daughter between the time that she had her driver's permit and her driver's license every time - and yes I said every time - would run the stop sign at a certain intersection she knew well. It never failed. I would just sink down in the seat so as to not let anyone know that I was in the car. The sad thing is the stop sign was across the street from us and kitty corner to the Sheriff's Office. She has learned from her past mistakes and has grown to be a law abiding citizen.

Then there is the daughter who just hated the doctor and dentist. Every time we would go she screamed bloody murder. It was as if the tongue depressor were some offensive weapon. The worst time was when the doctor was checking her throat with his offensive tongue depressor and with her moon boots (those big bulky thick soled snow boots from the 80's) she kicked. Yes, she injured him. It was probably the utmost embarrassing moment of my life. Not that he perhaps didn't deserve it. It took at least 4 of us to hold her down just to have the dentist check her teeth, let alone do any work. Years later she fessed up to why she cried. She hated the sucky thing that sucks up the water and spit.

A move from the farm into a small town (get where I'm going with this one?)...

A young toddler out riding her bike with training wheels along the sidewalk had decided half a block away from home that having to run back to the house for the bathroom was just something that need not be accomplished. A very nice neighbor came to the door with a rather large smirk on his face and pointed to my sweet little daughter as she was looking at the puddle that she had just made.

Many a time while shopping as the girls got old enough to reach shelves, they enjoyed throwing certain items in the cart without my knowledge. The bulky packages or paper towels, diapers, multi pack Kleenexes and tampons were easy to spot before we checked out. It was the condoms, pregnancy tests, lighters, numerous candy bars and packages of gum that would appear on the conveyer belt that got my goat. They were behind me just giggling and pointing, as I flushed with embarrassment told the cashier "No, those don't go."

Those four girls have kept me on my toes. And to be truthful, I would have it no other way.