Psychologist Alfred Adler theorized that childhood experiences affect our behavior and personality as adults. This is concerning considering I was left at a gas station in the mountains when I was 8 years-old by a bunch of drunk, none-English speaking, friends of a neighbor, that my recently divorced dad entrusted with my care for the day. I was sitting on the curb kicking a rock thinking about just how screwed I was when the car whipped back into the parking lot and screeched to a stop in front of me. The driver whistled at me and said “Vamonos!” and I climbed back in and laughed at the hilarity of their ignorance right along with them.
On that particular day my mom was recorded as being a 10 on the Richter-Scale-of-Pissed when they dropped me off 3 hours late. She tore out of our house screaming her goddamn head off and she did not even know that I had been abandoned at a gas station. I realized right then that my parents were never going to get back together. To this day when Mike bitches about me driving around on empty I remind him that gas stations have the propensity of igniting an episode of PTSD based on the trauma I endured as a child.
I tell you this tale not because I want you to feel sorry for me even though I do, but because my daughter recently started riding her bike without training wheels and skillfully executed her first face plant. Mike had taken the girls down the street to ride bikes when 5 minutes later my 7-year-old burst through the door screaming “MOMMY- SISSY’S FACE IS ALL OVER THE STREET BECAUSE SHE FELL OFF HER BIKE BECAUSE DADDY WAS TEXTING AND THERE IS BLOOD EVERYWHERE AND I AM NOT SURE IF SHE IS ALIVE OH AND DADDY ALSO LEFT HER BIKE DOWN THE STREET SO SOMEONE NEEDS TO GO GET IT SO SOME OTHER KID DOESN’T STEAL IT BECAUSE I STILL WANT THAT BIKE!” My children are half Italian so usually I don’t panic over yelling but she seemed really worked up. I ran outside and sure enough Mike was carrying our daughter up the street.
I hissed “I cannot believe you were texting Mike!” I put her into the car and drove her over to the doctor since her lip was so swollen she looked like she starred in an episode of ‘Real Housewives.’ Overcome with guilt, I told the doctor what I said to Mike and he said “men always get blamed for everything.” I started to nod my head in shameful agreement until he blew it with “So let me get this straight, you were doing dishes when this happened? I did not know princesses did dishes. BWAHAHAHAHAHA!” Alas, even a medical degree cannot save them. Ladies, clearly the fate of the world rests on our shoulders.
An hour later we were back home with the diagnosis of a minor concussion and a hurt thumb. Mike and I were lying in bed with our daughter stoned and sound asleep between us when I decided to make amends with Mike “I am sorry I snapped at you and I have a confession to make, I talked her into going up a ramp at the skate park yesterday. You are not the only shitty parent.” I couldn’t tell if he said “You are a nice soul” or “You are an asshole” but I figured we were good.
I also decided that I would never make my daughter ride a bike again. What a seriously jacked up thing to do to a kid. Hi. Get your balance! Good, now that your confidence is soaring and you feel a false sense of security, mommy and daddy are going to secretly let go and deceive you! Then when you fall off we will make you get back on so you can relive the trauma! Yeah, you overcame the fear of what will inevitably happen again! Fuck that. Coloring is so much safer. XO
PS.Thank you Dr.W and his wife for letting him stay late to help my kid! IOU more than just money. I know I owe you a lot of that though.