Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Am I Blue?

by Judy Merrill Larsen

Being a mom means you're gonna make mistakes with your kids. We all know that, right? I freely admit lots of screw-ups and I am also very free with my apologies (saying "I'm sorry" also makes it harder for them to stay mad at me.). Here are just a few mistakes:

~lack of vegetables. Yes, I serve plenty of salad. And fruit. But I have never served peas (other than peapods) in my kitchen and I never will. I hated them as a kid. Yuck. I also don't like many other cooked vegetables. Too mushy. If I don't like 'em, I'm not cooking 'em. Mushrooms are also on the list.

~lack of baby books/scrapbooks. I took tons of pictures. I saved report cards and "special" papers. The pictures are in photo albums up until about age 8, the rest are in boxes up in my office. But at least the boxes are labeled. The scrapbooks are pristinely new and empty.

~um, I sometimes yelled. Lost my temper when it wasn't really their fault. Cursed in their presence. Didn't always set a good example. Might have been inconsistent.

~My #1 Son (dubbed "Earthworm" by his brother; "Greenboy" by me) complains that I still don't have a compost heap in my backyard. Sorry, mea culpa, I'm just not a person who wants to trot out back with my egg shells and banana peels. I do recycle though.

But, you know what? I can totally relax now because all these things (well, except for the compost heap. And peas.) are reversible. Correctible. Unlike my cousin (distant cousin, I want to add) who turned his family blue. Yes. He really did. And it's permanent. Seriously. It can't be undone.

Now, it's not smurf blue.

It's not even as bad as that guy who was on Oprah talking to Dr. Oz a few months back who was really blue.

But, there is a distinct blue undertone to their skin nonetheless. And it won't fade or go away. It's there. Apparently, the rest of his family (but not him. That's telling.) were advocates of some dietary supplement. He felt it was too expensive. So, rather than buy it from their handy dandy local drugstore, he figured he'd make his own version. I mean, heck, why not? He'd had a chemistry set as a kid.

How complicated could it be? So he sent away to some mail order place and ordered all the ingredients and mixed them up. Look at all the money he was saving, he probably bragged to them. But, oops, there was a glitch of sorts. Rumor has it that he ordered a slightly different version of aluminum than people are supposed to ingest. And a few weeks after they'd started taking his formula, somebody commented that they were all (except for him who didn't believe in the supplement) looking a tad blue. Just a tinge, but noticeable. Oh, and did I mention it's PERMANENT?!

So, when I'm reviewing my litany of parental offenses, I take great pride in knowing I've never changed the color of my children's skin. Perhaps I'll still get that Mother-of-the-year award after all.

p.s. I'm on the last leg of my 2200+ mile road trip in a U-Haul from St. Louis to Seattle today, so I won't be commenting until tomorrow. Road trip stories to follow!


Daisy said...

The compost? It's easy, really. Get yourself a bin, dump things in, stir once in a while, and you'll have compost and much less garbage.

devilish southern belle said...

Oh wow. I've never changed the color of my kids' skin, either. I think it'd be pretty neat, though, to have a slightly different skin tone. I guess blue wouldn't go all that well with my red hair, though!

Judy Merrill Larsen said...

Ok, Daisy, between you and my son, maybe I'll give it a try!

DSB, I'd just like that magical skin tone that makes cellulite invisible. I'm thinking it's NOT blue.