I was overall a good girl this past week. Usually during the stress of being around and talking with so many relatives, I usually insult someone. I'm rather outspoken and really have a short fuse when it comes to way people act foolish and say ignorant things. Yet at the same time I've learned, not only do I not know everything, my opinion only matters to me and when I say how I feel about it, I come across as a bitch. Really, I believe live and let live as long as their stupidity doesn't harm children, especially mine.
Case in point: One relative is talking about how her grandson has stayed with her and his grandfather for the last week. She sighs and tells us they will be picking him up again to stay the next week with them. She moans how she never has alone time with her retired husband or to be by herself as she's off work next week. Now to me, it's simple. Tell the grandson, "I love you but you'll have to wait until next weekend and only stay a couple nights. Grandma and Grandpa need to do some things alone." Sure it's nice their grandson wants to be with them (they spoil him horribly and he dislikes his step-father), but you have to teach the child limitations.
Why moan and groan about it if you're going to give in to the child? Is it her way of bragging that her grandchild rather stay with her than his own mother? Personally I never understood that. If a child doesn't miss his mother, then what is the mother doing wrong?
I was a good girl. I just sat there with a stupid grin on my face, eyebrows raised and nodded with sympathy that I didn't feel.
So many times I heard people complain about something they could easily set their foot down and tell another person no or get off their butts and take care of the problem themselves. See, that's how I feel about it. I see a problem, I have two choices: I can do something about it or I can shut up. At the Christmas gatherings, I kept my mouth shut. That was the second choice. They really didn't want my opinion or my help. They just enjoy complaining about each other. And by me answering their whining in the past, I received nothing but a horrible reputation with my families. I spoke out too much. So now they can flounder in their indecisiveness as they really don't want my opinion.
Another attitude that bothered me was how adults talked about their children. During each of the get-togethers, they would say things in front of their children like, "I can't wait until they graduate and out of the house" or "Hey there, bubble-head" or "He acts so gay" or "He better plan on a tech school, he'll never get in a university" or the one I hate the most (as my mom use to say in front of me, "She's sweet? If only you lived with her."
Then these same people go around wondering why their children have self-esteem issues?
Hey, I know I wasn't a perfect parent, but I was cautious of what I said to my kids. I always TRIED to say positive things and whenever someone told me, "Your daughter is so sweet." Even today I always say, "Yes, she is." And I believe it. I'm fortunate and blessed. No. My children are not perfect. They have made mistakes and will make others. But so have I. I just refused to air them to everyone in effort to make myself sound like a martyr.
Oh, the biggy happened yesterday. An uncle I rarely see (maybe ten times in forty years) and who is really a nice guy, but not too bright, pointed to my youngest daughter (who's about to turn twenty-two) and said, "Carla, is she your granddaughter?"
The people around us became very quiet. I figured they were waiting for me to explode and tell him off, instead I turned away and asked my nephew how his wife was doing as she wasn't there. I'm sure someone told my uncle he'd made a big faux pas as he never asked it again.
Yep, I was a good girl.