My Kid is Better Than Your Kid? What'chu Talkin' bout Willis???
And now Rachel will proceed to isolate 95% of the Blogosphere because my blog should really be entitled Rachel vs. The World:
Nablopomo has been, should I say, quite the learning experience so far. Not only have I learned that I’m just as socially awkward online as I am in real life when it comes to interacting with new faces, like the newest person in the neighborhood who crashes the yearly Summertime ‘Hood BBQ at Conrad and Lisa’s house. But I never knew just how many mommy bloggers were out there. Apparently, Conrad and Lisa’s friends all have three or more children and said children are the most precocious kids to have ever in the history of time, been conceived.
I’m all for early learning and stuff. For example, “don’t put your hand on the stove-top unless you want Dr. Doom to cut that hand off!! Or Count von Count, despite his affinity for dressing like a gothic pimp, is an effective tool (and fantastically hands off) in teaching your children complex mathematical problems. I’m obviously preparing my child for an academic career at the local community college.
Honestly, my child has long passed the stages of Snuffaluffagus and tricking herself out for Count. Admittedly, when she was a baby, I allowed her to sleep in my bed, not because I read somewhere that it creates an intense maternal bond, but for the love of my sanity I needed some fucking sleep and putting her next to me in bed was an easy solution. (I did purchase one of those sleep pillows ensuring she didn’t end up on her stomach and prevented me from rolling on top of her). We shared a bedroom anyway and that precious crib turned into an unusable piece of home decor.
Speaking of precious – O, Mommy Blogs. My encounters with them have led me to the conclusion that Passive Aggression is the title of the first chapter in “Creating the Best Mommy Blog for dummies” book. I never knew how many “genius” children were out there! I mean, HOLY FUCK, either you took out a second mortgage on your upper-class suburban home in order to turkey baste Bill Gates’ sperm in to your ill -na na or Generation Xers (of which I’m proudly a card carrying member) aren’t as unambitious as the statistics say! And apparently, we didn’t in fact, smoke nearly as much pot in the parking lot at school during lunch time as reported.
Or maybe that was just me.
I can’t help but wonder, with all this genius baby-making, what happens when reality creeps in to these children’s lives. Because it will. It’s going to walk up to your genius child the first day of kindergarten and bite reality on the arm. Every time a mommy blogger states, “the doctor said that little Jenna is just the smartest little girl he ever saw!” what mommy really means is, “my kid is better than your kid,” in great big Fontlicious letters across the computer screen for all the world to marvel.
Lina engaged in a friendship with one of these children during her elementary school days. Said child was so socially inept that by fourth grade, she’d already bagged a year of therapy. She and Lina fought like sisters and I came to understand, through careful observation, that said child didn’t like to be intellectually or creatively challenged in any meaningful way and purposely chose friends who were bordering Learning Disabled (actually, some of them were), in order to foster her superiority complex. It was a very short-lived friendship.
Dear mommy bloggers: MY KID IS BETTER THAN YOUR KID
Lina, who will be thirteen in a couple of weeks (an eyeliner and lip gloss kind of girl), came running into the house Wednesday from the bus stop, smiling wildly about this Maple Leaf. “MOMMY, LOOK AT THE SIZE OF THIS LEAF – I FOUND IT IN OUR FRONT YARD AND IT’S BIGGER THAN MY HEAD!”
I asked her if I could take a picture of her with the leaf. (at nearing thirteen, you better ask your daughter if you can take a picture or else prepare to deal with the fallout of sucking teeth and eyes rolling so hard, you think you just might have to make an ER run because they’ve gotten stuck).
I almost fell on the floor when she enthusiastically said yes. “Are you going to post it to Facebook?!!!”
Of course I was. She stood near the hearth and raised the mammoth leaf up to her face, covering it. I clicked my phone camera and off the picture went to my personal FB wall.
Not only was I elated that my girly-girl daughter, who chats it up with her friends on KIK and Instagram, took enormous delight in a maple leaf, I couldn’t help but remember the time Claire, from Six Feet Under, created an art project by placing cut-out eyes on top of her own and asked her boyfriend to take pictures of her. I’m not saying that Lina meant to create art, but it was the instinctual nature of it that took my breath away. She could have simply put the leaf next to her head, but she chose to cover her own face with it. Maybe I’m searching for the artist within, because what mother doesn’t want her child to share such an amazing trait? But she did it, whatever her intent or however I perceive it.
She is, for all intents and purposes, a teenager. She found tremendous amounts of joy in a maple leaf, while walking home from the bus stop. She covered her face with it and wanted me to take a picture.
My Kid Is Better Than Your Genius Baby.
Not because I’ve tirelessly shoved flashcards in her face to the point she regurgitates meaningless letters on a card. Not because she is constantly compared to other children. Not because I’ve created an impenetrable bubble filled with fairy dust and gaggy blog posts.
Because she is growing into a person all her own. The reflection is one that comes from a place of honest self-growth and personal enjoyment. She is no one’s puppet on a string. And in my eyes, she did a breathtaking thing, of her own pure volition.
They sicken of the calm who know the storm - Dorothy Parker