Maybe Itâ€™s Time I Stopped Farting, Burping And Picking My Nose In Front Of The Kids
Occasionally peering into the fishbowl is like looking in the mirror. I thought about this last week while reading a particularly resonant New York Timesarticle on the freedom of living alone â€“ about singletons who choose to eat cereal for every meal, leave their bra on the kitchen table and drink out of the carton. For a moment there, I was feeling rather envious of all those freewheelers. Until I realized: Iâ€™ve never truly left that life behind.
Though my husband would barely notice, being out of the house a minimum of 12 hours a day, I also am guilty of leaving my skivvies in inappropriate places. I am a serial cereal-diner. And, yes, I have been known to drink out of the carton (though, in my defence, only when I know nobody else is interested in the matter at hand â€“ and that goes for dipping my spoon in the ice cream tub, too).
I use the phrase â€œI have been known toâ€ because, unlike those single folk, I often have an audience: my kids.
My girls are four and three, and yet I still behave as if theyâ€™re infants, blissfully ignorant of their mommyâ€™s transgressions. I suppose thatâ€™s because â€œtransgressionsâ€ can be so goddamn fun. The younger one, especially, seems to experience so much joy when she hears me fart, it would seem miserly not to indulge her. So I do, more than perhaps I should. Ditto burping. The few times my husband has heard me let one rip, heâ€™s expressed such horror-slash-disgust that Iâ€™ve vowed to suppress my gas until the day I finally lose control of my faculties. The kids, however, canâ€™t get enough.
Their days are numbered, though. As much as it pains me to censor myself, something tells me my children should be learning by example. If I keep this up much longer theyâ€™re likely to turn into two farting, burping, hawking, privates-scratching monkeys who eat in bed, shower irregularly and sometimes â€œforgetâ€ to brush their teeth before bed. So Iâ€™ve started to ask myself: how many times will I have to hear, â€œEw, Mommy, get that snot off your fingerâ€ before I finally stop nose-picking with zeal?
As it stands, if I were to succumb to a speeding bus tomorrow, my husband would remember me as the lady he fell in love with (okay, so he knows about the cereal and my aversion to bathroom doors, but I remain largely untarnished in his eyes). Iâ€™m not sure Iâ€™d come off half as well if my kids were to give the eulogy.
But then, there never seems to be a good time for this committed boor to go straight. For now I guess itâ€™s enough that Iâ€™ve recognized I have a problem; Iâ€™ve seen the error of my ways, and thatâ€™s half the battle. If thereâ€™s a 12-step program out there, Iâ€™d be open to it. An intervention? Perhaps. Just remember to keep the windows open.