Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Parent Trap

I'd like to take a moment to deviate from the main topic of this blog and talk about something else that's really important to me: my parents. Bear with me, people. This might get mushy.

For the record, I have the greatest parents in the entire world. This is not a biased opinion, but hard fact. I even have evidence to back it up.

1. My mom cooks for me whenever I come home. Yes, this is something lots of mothers do, but mine does it best.

2. My mom sends me emails. This is also something other mothers do, but mine does it better. Today she emailed me to ask if I'd ever eaten at some obscure sandwich shop, and to tell me she bought me a 50's black and white polkadot dress at the Goodwill.

3. Sometimes my mommy buys me groceries.

4. My mom watches Golden Girls with me.

5. My padre also sends me emails, which I can guarantee are better than any email you've ever received from anyone, at any time. Case in point:

I heard your podray would not let you try a sip of coffee from his
cup.But you can always have a drink from my water dish.I hope you
change your mind about me. I think I am kind of cute.I love you, Mr.
Puffy snake

6. My padre sometimes fills up my car with gas. And then keeps me from leaving for an extra ten minutes because he wants to double-check the tires to make sure I won't die on the drive home.

7. If I come home for the weekend, my padre runs out to the car, shouting, "Sum's home! Sum's home!" I'm then smothered with hugs and more shouting.

8. My padre can't actually spell 'padre.'

I always hear people complaining about their parents, and that makes me sad. I wish I could clone my parents and share them with those kids. But I guess, if I did that, they wouldn't really be my parents, and they aren't something I want to share.

The closer it gets to June, the more I realize that I'll have to leave my parents. I always knew I'd have to someday, but someday isn't that far away anymore. I won't be able to come home on the weekends to do laundry (I refuse to spend $12 every time I want to wash my clothes. Landlords suck.), or spend an afternoon thrifting with my mom. My dad won't wander into my room with my sister's pet snake, trying to creep me out. I'll get to see them once or twice a year, and while I'm ready to move on and live my life, it's still sad to think about leaving them.

My parents are the reason I've gotten to where I am today. They've constantly encouraged me, and instilled in me an indispensable work ethic. We don't have a lot of money; my mom and dad both work two jobs, and I've had to pay for college myself. My parents never even went to college. But you know what? They've never once complained. They've taken everything in stride, and they've raised three kids. I think we all turned out pretty well, too (even if my brother still likes to pull stupid pranks, and my sister has a pet snake). My dad is the happiest person I've ever met, and I try to emulate that. I've learned not to sweat the small stuff, and when the bigger things come around, well, I've got my parents.

You know what else makes my parents so great? They've let me fail. They've let me make my own choices and learn from my mistakes. If they hadn't let me go to Ireland, I'd be a completely different person right now, and I don't think I'd like her nearly as much. They let me transfer colleges three times, even if they didn't know whether the next school would be the right one. Heck, they let me major in whatever I wanted, even though the economy sucks and jobs are hard to come by. They've been there to support me through every decision, even if they didn't like it. I'm still not sure how they feel about me moving to New York, but you know what? They're letting me do it, and they're still behind me. They've supported my writing, and even though I haven't let them read any of it, they still tell their friends about it. Like it's cool, and something to be proud of. Not every parent does that, and I'm unfailingly grateful that my parents believe in me. I could've gone to school to make wooden shoes and they'd probably tell everyone how proud they were, but they're parents, you know? It's what they do.

My life's had its ups and downs, there's no doubt about that. Middle school and high school were rough, but my parents always told me things would get better. And they did. Looking back, I wish I'd listened to them. It would've saved me a whole lot of stress, let me tell you! These days, as college comes to an end, and the rest of my life is starting to come into focus, I can honestly tell all you younger folks that things really do start to look up once you're an adult. Listen to your parents - they've been through it, and they aren't lying (despite what you think now. Trust me, I used to be one of you).

So hats off to you, Madre and Padre. You really are the greatest parents in the world, and I can never thank you enough for the woman you've helped me become.

(And, for the record, I can't wait to see my dad in Time Square. Talk about a fish out of water. I'll be sure to get pictures.)

1 comment:

  1. Awesome post, Sammy! With you 100%--my parents are awesome and I love spending time with them. My parents sound a lot like yours in that you could describe them as "not like the other moms and dads"--Mom and I can spend hours cackling over 1950s scifi and Dad taught me how to appreciate Scotch. Three cheers for parents!