Parenting is like a having too many Glade Plugins?
DISCLAIMER: I really don’t use glade plugins anymore, but I do buy a wide variety of essential oils that get plugged into an outlet diffuser (which looks suspiciously similar to the glade plugin doohickey). I suspect my next big conspiracy theory will involve Dick Cheney owning my organic oil company, and secretly updating the recipe to chemically-altered fossil fuels that only smell like peppermint. muhaha!
But back to parenting and glade plugins. Let me guess your first two questions:
1) Aren’t you a little too much of a hippie to use glade plug ins, Stephanie?
Yes, of course I am! Why in the hell would I pay money to pollute my indoor air? I can go outside and get polluted air for FREE. Beyond that, the plastic pouch full of chemical-laden, noxious fumes that Glade calls perfume gives me migraines.
2) Ah, I see; your statement parenting is like too many glade plugins is an analogy.
So. You’ve lost your mind?
No! Well, maybe, but not about this.
Once upon a time, like 6 years ago, I had a friend who loved glade plugins. To the tune of at least one plugin per room, often differing in scent.
You’re still not really grasping the horror, are you?
Here- walk in my mind for a minute.
Take a long-haired dog and add water. Roll dog in swamp mud, some other dog’s poop, then throw the dog at a terrified skunk.
Then spray the dog with seven different bottles of perfume, and at least 5 different aerosol bathroom sprays. Febreeze the poor thing JUST IN CASE.
That was her house– except she DIDN’T HAVE A DOG.
But she couldn’t smell any of the
suffocating lingering perfume/stank anymore. The nose adjusts, you see.
It’s the same phenomenon that allows me to forget that my hall bathroom probably reeks of urine. Don’t judge me; I hit the bowl every time. And I totally threw that in here in case you ever come over and pee in the bathroom. IT’S NOT ME.
So, you see, parenting is like your nose. It just sort of . . . adjusts. As your children age, you are paying attention, but not rea–
Forgive me, this is just easier: you can no longer smell what the Rock is cooking.
This isn’t always a bad thing, as it also means that your little Dumplin’ has clawed his way off the 40x magnification of the parental microscope.
But I digress–
In the middle of a typical– mind-numbing, time-sucking, soul-leaching– day as I strive toward the trend of positive (must-be-over-valium-ed) parenting I realized that I had gotten used to their scent.
That I had gotten used to their reactions, their talents, their strengths, and their weaknesses. Somehow I had stopped being impressed by all of those things; I was failing to notice the scented perfume of their youthfulness. Other people– friends, teachers, and family– can still smell them.
So instead of opening a window for some fresh air, I kept (metaphorically) trying to cover up the rottenness of their discontent.
I pushed Zach to be a better 2nd grader.
Which is fine, except he’s in kindergarten.
I pushed Elliot. I fully expected the LOUD that has been his normal since rocking it Placenta Style would transition seamlessly to an appreciation for quiet.
Guess what happens when you push kids too hard? They fucking push back. Then everyone stands around shoving and poking at each other, until finally calling Game Over because YOU are the ADULT, dammit!
Ha. Adult. Whatever.
Like a house with too many glade plug-ins, the fumes from all those expectations were masking the stink. Problem solved.