Archive for the ‘manners’ Category

Many decades ago, when I was a girl who didn’t like being bothered to do anything that would cut into my daydreaming and reading time, my mother embarked on a crafts project. She designed and embroidered two pillows for me. The first depicted colorful little snails and the curving words, “Don’t Rush Me.” The second was adorned with tiny insects with the heading “Don’t Bug Me.” Why did my mother take the time to stitch these charming little pillows? Let’s just say I drove her to it.

I’ve been thinking about those pillows lately as my teenaged sons greet my requests to do, well, anything, with the same sort of exasperated annoyance I once apparently perfected. Those pillows, still nestled in a box somewhere in my mother’s attic, remind me that I once was more like my boys are now than I usually admit. When I ask for the umpteenth time that they don’t walk into the house in their mud-caked baseball cleats or remind them to put their dirty clothes into the hamper, I certainly don’t find myself thinking “gee, like mother, like sons!”

But those pillows are proof that I was not always a grown up, and that the journey from being a child who thinks parents are uptight and obsessive about such absurdities as household chores to becoming an adult who actually hangs up a wet bath towel without being told to do so is a very long one. (more…)

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