What I know at 32
In fact, the older I get the less I know which I think may actually be a step forward towards enlightenment. But probably not.
Regardless, since today marks the anniversary of my birth, I thought I’d share a few morsels of wisdom/truth that I have accumulated thus far.
**Doesn’t include previous lives. Because I can’t remember ANY of that shit no matter how many times I’ve tried.
"I, myself, am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions” -Augusten Burroughs
This quote not only serves as a window into how I see myself, but upon greater reflection it is also an accurate summation of all my favorite people. I throw ‘best friend’ around like it’s my job. I will tell a particularly great server they are my best friend mere moments after meeting them, I will refer to at least 3 dozen people as my ‘besties’. I subscribe to the Mindy Kaling school of thought that ‘bestfriend’ isn’t a person but rather a tier.
But the ones that have squirreled their way into my heart of hearts, the ones I confide in and laugh with, and ugly cry on- snot and all. Well, this is them. My band of misfits and weirdos makes my heart soar and my face hurt from laughing. And they are always right there to pick my sorry, defeated ass up when I need them. Which is often.
Being in love is less flowers, Lionel Richie love songs, and grand displays of affection and more the boring stuff.
Like knowing exactly the spot that is ALWAYS itchy on my back that I can’t reach, and getting it the first time. Or reminding me that no matter how good my book is, I’ll barf if I try reading while in a car. Settling my nerves when I think some catastrophic cataclysmic ending is headed my way because two weird things have happened to me and so the third death-inducing thing is around the corner. Being woken up at 4am with the greatest thought I have ever had and not getting angry or hating me for it, but simply telling me “I love you. But shut up and go to sleep” in the nicest way possible.
Being in love is knowing all the bizarre ins and outs of who someone is and loving them through it. I’d say for it but honestly I think he’s growing tired of the chewing neurosis. But come one.. chewing is THE WORST.
Being a parent is bull shit. NO one tells you that. Kids are terrorists. Parents of other kids can be even worse than terrorists.. which is.. I don’t know, gluten or something.
I love them. I really, really do. They make me pictures and tell me how snuggling with me is the best because I feel like a pillow, and my toddler is currently only referring to me as “Brittany” and I can’t get him to stop yelling “You STUPID” at random people. But I do really, really love them.
But I have also never thought about leaving my husband and I have thought almost weekly about leaving my children.
Parenting is hard and it’s bullshit and we should be allowed to speak more candidly about it. Because the way I see life, a giant, splendid pendulum, means that the more I speak and laugh about the bad times, the more I feel and relish the good times. The more I am open and honest with my friends about thinking about selling my eldest on kijiji, the more I can return home to them and find the humour and the sanity to keep running this marathon for one more day.
They are the most perfect of humans with their own little flaws, and the immense gratitude I feel to get to be their mom is almost overwhelming as I watch them begin to blossom into distinct, independent, smart, and obviously ridiculously good looking, little humans. And it’s this dichotomy I live with daily. The amazement and wonder of how I got to be so lucky to have such great kids, and then having to reprimand a nearly potty-trained toddler because he has found great elation in peeing on his sister in the bathtub.
Beyoncé and Britney Spears are only one year older than me.
I can’t decide about #blessed. Like on one hand it’s great to feel such gratitude for like, Pumpkin Spice Latte season, but maybe a little much and we’re losing site of the significance of blessings and blessed.
If someone makes you laugh keep them in your life forever. The ones who make you laugh and make your day a little more sunshiney are the keepers. There’s enough negative, energy-sucking people in this world. Keep the good ones and be the good ones.
Animals are the single greatest mental health therapy around. Every day should be spent giving some love to an animal.
“Sexiness wears thin after a while and beauty fades, but to be married to a man who makes you laugh every day, ah, now that's a real treat.” Joanne Woodward
More than half of my 32 years has been spent with the same guy. I get so many comments and questions about how at 15 and 17, two teenagers met and managed to navigate their way through three kids and 9 years of marriage- mostly but not always happily since I’m in the business of being honest. But, honestly I have no idea what has made us work so far other than that we genuinely enjoy each other’s company. I mean reading Twilight (shut up.. I was super pregnant and I needed a diversion) I saw how Jacob imprinted on Edward and Bella’s kid and wondered is something like that happened to us. Like it was fated or something cosmic like that. Or maybe we just have worked really hard to have a friendship and partnership or maybe we are just really lucky. I don’t know.
But in the absence of any good advice I can, and now that I have referenced Stephanie Myer on my blog (cringe) this quote from Joanne Woodward (was married for years and years to the sexy Paul Newman) is kind of the best and only advice, really.
Honestly last night we got laughing about something and I had to stand up repeatedly because the wheezing and snorting was trying to kill me. I was crying and he was laughing harder at me and my noises and I nearly passed out. If that’s what she means then yes. Do that. Especially if he thinks those snorts and wheezes and weird cry face are loveable too.
***New Kids on The Block are better dancers than Backstreet Boys. It pains me to admit it, but the truth needs to be told.