When I Was A Kid, I Never Thought I’d Become My Parents. And Yet Here We Are.
Payback is a bitch.
You don’t truly learn the meaning of this phrase until you become a parent.
Suddenly all of the hell-raising we did and grey hair we gave our parents in our own youth isn’t so funny or nostalgic anymore.
Remember when we were young and our parents would say, “I hope you have a kid just like you one day,” and we would go, “Oh yeah? Well I do too, because I’m awesome.” We ate those words, didn’t we? It seems our children are determined to repeat history – our history.
Do any of these give you some déjà vu?
When I Was a Kid, I LOVED Roller-Coasters. Now They’re The Worst.
When I was fourteen, there was no ride scary enough to deter me. If a ride opened that did seventy-three loops and then plummeted fifty stories straight down, I was first in line. I say fourteen, because I could not ride roller-coasters before I was old enough to go to the park alone with friends.
Why? Because my mom was a wimp – at least that’s the take I had on it. She couldn’t even watch me on a roller-coaster. But now that my oldest is approaching the minimum height for these beasts, I am trying to come up with a plausible lie to keep him off of them. “Sorry, Son, the park mysteriously closed down the exact day you hit five feet tall. Weird, huh?”
When I Was a Kid, I Was The Master of Snark.
I used to pride myself on my snark – okay, I still do. My parents, though, seemed to alternate between being quietly impressed with my aptitude for sarcasm, and wishing they could find an affordable boarding school.
My children have inherited this talent, and Mom and Dad, I now understand your struggle. In fairness, based on the stories I’ve heard from my own parents’ youths, this is a family trait that goes way back.
When I Was A Kid, I Made Mornings Horrible For Everyone
I was so hard to wake up as a teenager, that once the fire alarm went off erroneously, and while the rest of my family scrambled out of their rooms, I meandered out five minutes later, confirmed there was no fire, and went immediately back to sleep.
You can imagine what mornings were like trying to get to school across town by 8 AM. I am being paid back for this grief I caused two-fold. My youngest wakes me up at what my mother refers to as “sparrow fart” in the morning.
If the sun isn’t out yet, we consider it a win. Conversely, my oldest child is as easy to wake as a hibernating bear, and not nearly as friendly. Our mornings involve gentle rousing, yelling, removing blankets and sheets, then idle threats of sprinkling with water until he is awake enough to literally growl for thirty-five minutes.
When I was a Kid, I Needed A Personal Chauffer – Now I Am The Chauffer
Full-disclosure, I sort of lucked out with this one. There was no bussing to my school, so my parents drove me. I was also very active in extra-curricular activities, so my parents drove me there too. Then there was my social life.
Now, my kids require similar accommodations – except that I don’t have a driver’s license, so it’s my husband doing it. This extra sucks for him, because he took buses as a kid, so he is being paid back for my youth. Also, he drives me everywhere too. (Sorry, Babe.)
When I Was a Kid, I Thought My Parents Were Horrifying. Now I’m The Horrifying One.
At some point you learn that your parents are horrifying and should not be allowed in public. My parents were about my age now when I came to this realization as a kid. I know this because my kid doesn’t always want to be seen with me either.
Thankfully, I planned this well by having kids five years apart in age. My six-year-old thinks I’m the best – and by the time he’s a tween and realizes I’m horrifying, my oldest will be old enough to think I’m awesome again. And if that doesn’t line up perfectly, I can always take a page from my dad’s book and just start wearing super embarrassing hats when they commit any of the infractions mentioned in this article.
Have you realized you’ve turned into your parents yet? I’m sorry and you’re welcome. Just remember that chances are good that one day, your children will have children just like them – and payback is a bitch.