Friday, April 29, 2005

Five more questions

Orange had posted the answer to 5 questions that sergei had sent to her with further instructions to ask 5 other people 5 questions. So I volunteered because I figured what the hell....

and now they are answered:

1. What aspect of parenting was the most unpleasant surprise to you?

Hmm, probably that I was supposed to be tied to this little person for the rest of my life, though I have found that it gets easier as he gets older. I had a hard time adjusting to this particular change and sometimes I do wish I could just “do my thing” and not have the great amount of responsibility that I do have (an example would be sitting on the beach without having to worry about him jumping into the water without me).

2. What is your most irrational fear?

Fears can be irrational? : ) But seriously, I’d have to say bridges and tornadoes. I’m not visibly afraid of many things, but I worry about crossing bridges while Peanut is in the car with me as I know he can’t survive without me and there is no way I’d let him die. With this came the realization that it’s either both of us live or both of us die; it’s a huge responsibility when you think about it. There are times when this kind of anxiety keeps me awake at night and that, I believe, is when it crosses over into the realm of irrationality because the chances of it ever happening are slim and none. I dream about tornadoes endlessly and last summer, Mother Nature decided that we needed a few reminders about who is boss, therefore sending us 3 of ‘em in as many weeks. Thank goddess I was here in Richmond and not at home!

3. Are you turning into your mother? And would that be a good or bad thing?

Agh, I have to answer yes to this because I am a lot like my mother and I’ve caught myself doing things that I swore, pre-Peanut, that I would never do to my own kids. My mother had/has an explosive temper and during my adolescent years, used my head as a battering ram for whatever I happened to be leaning on when she became angry. She would take my head and slam it backwards and its hit doorframes, dresser knobs, etc. Peanut is 5 years old now but for a while I found myself reacting to his tantrums the same way my mom would react to mine. I have since learned how to relax myself or walk away but it’s been a long time coming as I had to gain the knowledge of introspection first and realize I had some responsibility in the way Peanut was acting.

But turning into my mom is also a good thing, too, because I used to think my mom was the bomb (not a totally fair statement because I still do). My dad was out to sea a lot and she was a single mom for the most part. With their lack of funds, she still made sure we (my sister and I) had what we needed and supported us in almost everything we did by coming to all our open houses and so forth. She was very much involved in our lives yet still allowed us our independence in order to find our own way in the world. She let us express ourselves but with regulations (picture those commercials for a drug free America here). It seems that as soon as I begin to think that my mom will never understand me, she surprises me with some magical statement and then I’m all awash with love and affection for her again. My mom has always been that caring lady who was ready with hugs and kisses whenever anything went wrong. When we got old enough to go out with friends without her, we’d come home at 11pm and jump up on my parents’ bed (on my mom’s side) to talk about what we did that night, who went with us, etc. My dad would deal with it for a while then start complaining that he was trying to sleep. This is something I hope Peanut and I can continue when he’s older.

4. What’s your favorite book that you read before the age of 20?

Geesh…that’s really making me think. I remember reading Where the Red Fern Grows in 7th grade and loving it. Then there are Judy Blume and Beverly Cleary books. Lord of the Flies was also excellent and in the 10th grade, I read a book about a German soldier who was hiding out in a house and he wasn’t supposed to be and the young girl who lived there fantasized about what he was like…the title had German soldier in it I think. I don’t have any one favorite as I tend to like just about everything I read and champion them all. Between the ages of 16 and 18 is when I discovered Stephen King and Dean Koontz as well.

5. What do you expect to be doing 15 years from now, when your son is grown?

Hopefully making public policy in either DC or back here in VA. I know that I will not be content sitting on my ass (at least I hope I won’t be anyway) so I plan on being in the public/political sphere somewhere somehow. I’m also hoping this will set a wonderfully high standard for Peanut and he’ll be a better man than his father ever has been.