Sunday, September 22, 2013

Move Over, Miley: Why I Can Never Be a Role Model

“If your kid needs a role model and you ain't it, you're both f****d.”
― George Carlin

Immediately after lunch on Friday, I did this:

In a fit of conscience immediately after popping that delectable sugary caramel-y goodness into my mouth, I pieced together the shreds of hastily torn wrapper and found that the tasty treat has 200 calories (OK, I've seen WORSE) but 29 GRAMS OF SUGAR!!!  Holy mother of pearl.  That is REALLY a lot of sugar packed into one delicious treat.  I begrudgingly wrapped it back up and stuck it into a desk drawer for the ants to find later.  Let them die of a sugar coma.

I would be horrified if my children ever put a 29-grams-of-sugar treat into their mouths.  I can put this sugar-laden grenade into my system without a second thought (until, granted, I read the nutrition information..."nutrition" being a VERY loose term for this item).  I KNOW that children emulate what their parents do...but, MAN, I sometimes suck as a role model.  Sometimes, I need to go sit in a corner and think about what I've done.

  • Driving.  Sometimes, I have to admit, I drive too fast.  And I have texted while driving (although not when my kids are in the car...they TAKE my PHONE away if I try!).  I practice rolling stops at certain intersections.  Very often, I am rifling through my purse for that tube of lipstick or a pen or that coupon I tucked away while I'm hurtling down the highway.  I do all of this because I believe myself to be a FABULOUS and terribly competent driver.  I'm sure that will be etched on my gravestone someday. "Here lies Kelly T.  She was a fabulous and terribly competent driver.  Until she crashed."  
  • Emotions.  I cry at the drop of a hat.  I do.  I admit it.  I get teary over EVERYTHING.  Sad, happy, you name it.  On the other end of the spectrum, sometimes, my anger flashes up quickly and I snap at people.  I also have days where I just can't seem to get out of my pajamas.  Instead of being rational and reasonable, I FEEL my way through life.  I do recognize myself in most of the Lifetime: Television for Women movies.  
  • Procrastination.  There is nothing I can't put off.  I TELL myself that I operate best under a tight deadline, but really I am just delaying the work stuff so I can do the fun stuff FIRST.  Sometimes, I also eat dessert before dinner...because I could DIE before dessert if dinner always comes first.  I almost NEVER choose work before fun.  It's why I can often be found cleaning my house at midnight because all the fun people have gone to bed.
  • Denial.  Pffft.  OK.  SOMETIMES I pretend to myself that everything is OK.  SOMETIMES I am very Scarlett O'Hara-ish in my approach to life:  "I'll think about it tomorrow."  Today, everything is sunny if I simply don't focus on those cobwebs in the corner then I can look at the SUNSHINE STREAMING THROUGH THE WINDOWS.  For a moment...for TODAY...the cobwebs don't exist. This is not exactly healthy.  I'm just sayin'.
  • Addictions.  So, I don't really know if "having an addictive personality" is a really REAL thing defined by psychologists or if it's JUST another excuse we addictive-type people have to avoid taking responsibility for our actions.  I WILL tell you this:   I avoid drugs like the PLAGUE because I KNOW I would be an AWESOME drug addict.  I would forego everything in my life to have ONE MORE HIT.  I know myself.  So I don't touch drugs.  I've been a borderline alcoholic (perhaps even crossed over THAT particular red-flag zone a time or two...when you desire a beer while DRIVING TO WORK in the morning it MIGHT be a bad sign).  I've smoked.  I've eaten myself into oblivion.  I've indulged in countless other self-destructive behaviors over the years that I would never, ever want my kids to see or to emulate.
 Thing 1 and Thing 2 are blessed to have MANY adults in their lives who serve as FABULOUS role models.  In many ways, their dad is a terrific role model in the places where I fall short and I manage to fill in the gaps where he might have an issue or two.  They have their grandparents and some friends of the family and they've had many wonderful teachers, coaches and Scout leaders to look up to.  Those Things are blessed in ways they can't imagine.

And I just thank God that it's NOT all up to me.  It truly does take a village, doesn't it?

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