You would think, by now, I’d be old enough to know better…
Sometimes, I expect the world to be fair and for other people to observe the golden rule. Just because you put your personal differences aside and do the right thing when it comes to someone else, even if you have to grit your teeth to do it, doesn’t mean that very same person in a remarkably similar reversal, will do the same thing. I should just know that by now, right? Maybe this time I’ve actually learned that. Maybe. Hey, it could happen!
Sometimes not saying anything is better than saying something nasty. (My mother taught me that one.) So when I say nothing and say nothing and count to 100 and say nothing…. when does the goading stop? Does an ulcer signify success? Would taking up kick-boxing help… at all?
My father was the one that always said “Life’s not fair” — and I always argued. But you know what? He was right. Life isn’t fair. And, like parenting, no one gives you a manual. You, me and everyone else, just have to wing it, do what we can and hope for the best.
I laughed when both my parents told me that “parenting adults is harder than parenting children.” I felt the sting of the words aimed at me, while I complained about the messes my tiny children made and how hard it was to have two boys so close together in age and to literally start over again with a girl 10 years after the eldest boy was born. They didn’t understand, I assured myself… they never had THREE kids and they never tried to do it alone. I was wrong. They were right. ‘Nuff said.
So here I sit… trying to figure out how to learn to “let go” of the things I can’t do anything about and there I go… searching under every un-turned rock to find the wisdom to know the difference. Here I am, waiting for a miracle, a revelation, a tiny sliver of insight so I can figure out what my role is and if, indeed, I still have one in so many situations that find me lately.
In the meantime, while I impatiently await enlightenment, maybe I can be mature enough to quit worrying about everyone else and give myself permission to just take care of me and the one child I have left who is still under legal age.
Maybe now is the time to quit wringing my hands about all the things I failed to do perfectly, and start enjoying life a little more. Maybe today is the day I finally reach a comfortable level of maturity and realize that being a little more selfish isn’t necessarily a bad thing… maybe it’s a bit more like self-preservation. Maybe that’s what it really means to be mature. Maybe.