Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Alternate YOUniverse

I recently went back on Anne's blog to delete and rewrite a comment I had left on there. I thought it maybe sounded a little more critical than I meant it. I also thought I might have sounded a little braggy (MY kids ALWAYS eat their veggies! What's the matter with YOURS?) Since, by the time I returned to make the change, she had already responded to my message, and she already knows that I'm critical and braggy (she has for about 31 years) I decided to leave it anyway.

I keep kind of feeling like I'm writing too much stuff without giving the whole story (and you guys are all, "Oh, you give PLENTY of story, Lis!"). I think it's the apologizer in me. I have a hard time presenting things to anyone, be it food, lodging, a gift (I don't really do gifts anymore, to keep the apologizer in me at bay) , and now apparently posting on my blog, without giving a list of reasons why it's not as good as it should be or isn't as good as it may sound. It's like I can't let people just decide for themselves. Or not care for themselves. "Oh, these brownies really didn't turn out this time. I accidentally put in too much vanilla!" Heaven forBID anyone think that I NORMALLY make my brownies that vanilla-y!

That's one thing I love about blogging. You can create your own little YOUniverse. When posting about the trip to the zoo, you don't even have to mention the hour long fit the toddler threw which overshadowed most of the fun stuff. Just talk about the fun stuff, and suddenly, you realize, "Hey! That was a GREAT day!" Mention your preference for Indian food, using a few real Indian names of real Indian dishes, and everyone accidentally thinks you're an Indian food expert. Talk about how your baby has a fetish with wiping things (particularly the coffee table and the kitchen floor) and his mom must be a clean freak. Or the table and floor are so dirty that even the baby feels the need to do something about it.*

I love having my own little MEniverse. My real life is full to the brim of kids and taking care of kids and kid stuff (which I LOVE), but it's nice to have place where I'm not "mom" or even "honey." Just Lisa. Here I have occasional visits from the kids, but mostly it's Lisa's world. I can include any of the good I want and leave out as much of the bad as I can. Still, some of the not so lovely details WILL leak in. Details like how very, very often I yell at my kids. Or like how I use Baby Einstein as a babysitter or never stop eating baked goods. But besides minor leaks like that, I just love being able to dam back the rest of the negative, leaving just a nice, refreshing pool of the...um...let's say "real me."

*All incidents and characters are fictitious. If any example resembles reality it is coincidental.


Susan said...

1st of all, Evie going to Slovakia: Now you know how I feel when you take her away from me for year at a time! also, why Slovakia?

2nd of all, yelling: Yesterday at Tyra's softball game some kids whose parents help coach were running around beside/behind the bleachers as usual. All of a sudden one of their mothers started up from the front of the bleachers yelling "No you don't Ryan! That is NOT OKAY!" etc., while walking right in front of the whole group of parents on the bleachers to get to the kids in trouble. I sort of smiled because she sounded just like me when I mean business but haven't reached hysteria yet. On the other hand the reaction on the bleachers did not seem so accepting of her behavior at all. I've heard her yell at her kids before and actually talked to her once about the merits of yelling. One last note: I was fasting to not yell so much--closely related to trying to be in tune and have the spirit, but even STILL!

And finally, your YOUniverse. I LOVE getting to look into your world, and even comment on it :) It's a great place to visit, even if things are a little critical/braggy :) (Silly, that's ME)

jonesfamily said...

First of all, you guys just need some meds to curtail the yelling.

Secondly, this post is so funny and true!

And thirdly, I've often thought about how most of my posts revolve around my boys and where am I? It looks like I don't even exist apart from them. Which is pretty much the case. I suppose one day I'll have a life separate from my kids!

Susan said...

ok, I just keep reading your yellling anecdote over and over, mostly to relive my imagined version of your kids serious little head nods followed by David's "often"
I just love it!

Erin said...

I really like your point about how you remember what you post about (and conveniently forget about the tantrum at the zoo or whatever). Nathan pointed out to me the other day that because we didn't take any pictures of our Memorial Day barbecue or write a blog about it, we will probably forget about it altogether eventually. Which is probably true. Hopefully when my kids go back and look at my blog (I hope to make it into a book eventually using something like blurb), they will remember the "youniverse" that I created of going to a farm or zoo, and forget about me yelling at them.

I thought Evie was just an anomaly for eating all her veggies. Are you saying all your kids like veggies? WOW!

Lisa said...

Su-You're so not braggy or critical, but you are SUCH an apologizer like me!! And yelling--it definitely depends on purpose and tone of voice. Screaming in anger and frustration = bad (I do this too, of course) raising your voice to get your kids attention or show that you "mean business" as you say = sometimes necessary. I do do both more "often" than I would like, though (I'm thinking maybe once a week in some extreme situation would be good).

Anne- I'm still very hopeful that I'll never have to take any performance enhancing drugs. :)
And you forgot to put THIRDLY in all caps!

Erin- I think the trick is, I generally make the veggies we all like the most. Also, I only require them to eat a small amount of the ones they don't love as much. But they know they have to eat what's on their plate so there are no battles. So you see I don't really mean that they're such perfect veggie eaters (and of course my quote in my post was an exaggeration of my actual comment on her blog) but I've made vegetable eating do-able for all of us, which still means that my kids probably eat less veggies than kids who have to be forced or "persuaded".

Lisa said...

Sorry, Su, forgot about the Evie thing. Slovakia is just across the border and only a few hour drive away. Things are cheaper there (and it's lovely) and therefore, that is where her school goes for their "green school" during the school year.

And That sounds VERY dangerous if you feel like I do for whole YEARS at a time! You should surely have died of starvation a long, long time ago! I'm glad you didn't, but I'm just saying.
Or maybe you end up doing what I did and make a good pan of brownies and somehow force it past that lump in your throat? Ug.