There was a Canadian movie out a few years back called Lies My Mother Told Me. I haven’t seen it, but the title always stuck with me. I am considering making it the title of my long awaited memoir.
I think as a parent I was surprised that I would struggle with telling my kids white lies. Santa and other fabled characters aside, there’s the “eat your carrots, they’re good for your eyes” and “frozen yogurt is as good as ice cream” delusions.
I believe honesty is the best policy and I think I’m doing okay there. Truth be told, my kids eat all veggies, so I haven’t had to lie to get them eaten – Emmy actually turned down a ham & cheese sandwich last week because we were out of tomatoes, so I won’t moan about that. And I wouldn’t dream of trying to pass off frozen yogurt as ice cream. I think ice cream is a treat and it should taste like it – no one wants to sit down to a bowl of rocky road ass flavoured frozen yogurt and be told it’s a “treat”.
At Christmas time, I rode the “you need to be good or Santa won’t come” train like a hobo. As I try to figure out where the lines are, I’ll share with you the lies Statler actually told me.
Peppers are good for your hair – it’ll get nice and shiny. There aren’t many veggies I don’t like, but I can’t do peppers. Raw is fine, but as soon as those babies get cooked, forget it. I hate roasted peppers, peppers in chili, peppers in rice, none of it’s good. That little lie had me eating cooked peppers like you wouldn’t believe. Until I realized my hair looked exactly the same. I was then told that it must be due to my thick hair so for it to kick in I should eat more. Yeah, whatever, I was 6 not stupid.
Adopting a baby is like going to pick out a Cabbage Patch. I was adopted. Super thankful for it when you consider the alternatives and knowing that I don’t share genetic material with Statler & Waldorf is what allows me to sleep at night. Now, while it might seem a like a cute idea to tell your adopted child that they were picked out of a cabbage patch, it just leads to weird places. First off, when they decided to go in that direction, it would’ve been helpful if they actually liked Cabbage Patch kids. They vehemently hated the dolls and refused to get one for me. I was in the 1st grade when they were all the rage and totally didn’t understand why they wouldn’t let me have one of the dolls that came from where I came from. It was very confusing. God bless my aunt who got me one for Christmas that year.
You are part Chinese. What the hell!? I have no idea why this was said to me. As a kid I was always curious about where I came from. Statler & Waldorf told me I was adopted when I was really young – I don’t remember ever not knowing, so I must have been really little. I always had questions, which I am sure got annoying at times, but throwing me that kind of curve ball just lead to more confusion. Statler even went so far as to chaperon a field trip to some Asian festival going on that year and told me to pay attention because because I would learn something about what it meant to be Chinese. Now, if you were to ask her about this, I’m sure she has no recollection, but I assure you it happened and I was very confused. I was the whitest kid ever – I would have loved to have been Chinese if it meant having a piece of the puzzle, but I knew the piece didn’t fit. You tell me…
When I compare parenting styles between the generation of my parents & I, I think I’m doing just dandy, my kids believe in Santa but at least they don’t think if they go out of the yard a police man will come and take them away.