Wednesday, February 13, 2008
i heart you with all my heart
(Please insert superbly-worded diatribe about the corruption/commercialization of holidays here, paying special attention to the fact that shitty, worthless greeting cards cost $5.00 apiece!!!)
That said, I am every bit a slave to commercialism. Well no, I'm amending that. I'm a slave to sentiment. There we go. Sentiment. That's it. My kids want for nothing, save someone to get rid of some of the extraneous shit in their room so they can play with the same raggedy form-less stuffed animals they've had for ninety three years. And yet here I sit with Valentines day breathing down my neck, and far be it from me to let it pass without some measure of fanfare. Now, I say I do these things to make my kids happy, to show them I love them, and it's true. But there's a serious disconnect when I find myself in Fred Meyer for the THIRD time in one day, just to make sure everyone has a trinket, a thing of candy, and strike me down, one of those blasted heart-shaped mylar balloons! People, it's those balloons that get me. Their simplicity and charm cast a spell on me, and pretty soon I'm buying heart-shaped candy, heart-shaped erasers, heart-shaped bath mats, whatever. It's worth mentioning that these festive little treasures are only a dollar, so I don't have to dig very deep to drag a handful of them home to remind my kids that I love love love them.
I'm a little embarrassed about my attachment to holidays, but in my heart-of-balloon-hearts, I defend it. Granted, I need to manage my time a little better so as to spare myself the maddening jaunts to Fred Meyer at eleven o'clock, whereupon I buy the balloons in secret, forced to wedge them under the Obama rally signs in the back of my Jeep, and hope they don't pop up once I pick up Reilly, who is busy at my mom's, putting the finishing touches on surprises of her own. I'm sure a better mom would observe Valentines day by watching the story of stuff with her kids, before taking the recycling out, and dusting all the PLAN toys, but damn it, those balloons get me every time. In fact, they are so important to me that tonight, I attempted for the first time in history, to go to the store in pajama bottoms. (buries face in hands) I was even undeterred by the absurdity of my clown-sized clogs juxtaposed against my sheer, never mind way-too-short, and definitely not passing as regular pants, pants. I had fully succumbed to the pajamafication of America, a movement I have passionately opposed, all because I needed the balloons. (Oh, and was too freaking lazy to put my jeans back on.) I got as far as the entryway when Todd asked, rather incredulously, "Um, isn't that a wee bit, um, casual?" His words were like a smelling salt, and I quickly retreated to my room to lug out the jeans.
What I am trying to say is that Valentines day, like its cousin holidays, is a total pain in my ass, but the sentimental benefits outweigh the dark side (ie- spending $8.00 on balloons I may forget to recycle, and trying to wear lingerie to acquire said balloons.) It's worth it to see my kids' faces in the morning, and to know that amidst the INSANITY that is our life, they can count on Mama making a fuss over these silly little days. And they know I love them...even when I'm screaming as I trip over the sagging, days-old balloons, with my feet caught in the strings.
Happy Valentines day everyone.