Thank you for raising me to be a hell-raiser. When I took Drivers Ed with my best friend, she slammed on the breaks and cried once. Every time I was behind the wheel, it was more like Yippee Ki-yay Mother Fuckers!
Don’t get me wrong, there’s definitely pros to being the girl who cried in Drivers Ed. My best friend never has to apologize to people for her brazen words also known as “harsh honesty.” I do. I have to do that. A lot. Plus, I’m often told that it’s astounding that I’m still alive and well, driving the way I do.
BUT. I rarely take shit from anyone. I stand up for myself and my beliefs and my loved ones and women and people of color and my students and Humans Who Genuinely Enjoy Miracle Whip and my dog (he’s still learning, OK?!). I’m so full of self-righteous indignation sometimes that I have been known to—gasp!—tell a man why I don’t want to go on another date with him. I know, I know, the audacity! Let him think he’s amazing and superior, even when letting him down, right? NO. Not right.
I have stomped my foot, I have gotten on and off so many goddamn soapboxes, I have tutted and tsked my way through a room, and I have shaken my head and finger at plenty of deserving suspects. How dare they? Do they know who I am? Do they know who raised me?
Yes, yes, this means my options are narrowed. I’m too outspoken or too opinionated or too awesome for a lot of guys. I’d be married with a bunch of babies by now if I wasn’t such a hell-raiser. I just…can’t seem to stop.
I wanted to thank you for not being the kind of mother who says things like:
“You should really hurry up and meet a man so that I can have grandbabies.”
“Why are you still single? When are you gonna settle down?”
“You’re not getting any younger!”
“Maybe you shouldn’t be so picky; maybe this is the best thing that’s gonna come around…”
Sometimes I forget how lucky I am—I forget how common those questions are, how casually they’re constantly thrown at women like darts.
YOU say things like:
“You don’t HAVE to have kids. Don’t feel like you HAVE to have children. If you want them, well OK then.”
And then, when I say that yes, I do want kids one day, but I worry about the complications of having kids in your mid-late thirties:
“You know, you don’t have to get married to have a kid. You can always adopt. Never rush into something because you want to have kids.”
“You should NEVER settle.”
It’s crazy how many parents pressure their children into getting married and having kids…I will always be grateful to have been raised by a woman like you, who never pressured me into doing anything besides focusing on my schoolwork. I may be biased as an educator, but I think that’s the only thing that parents should ever pressure their kids into doing, haha! You may not be perfect. I’m sure as hell not perfect. But I am a hell-raiser and you are perfect in my eyes. Thanks, Mama<3