Wednesday, October 5, 2011

#38 - Not My Favorite Thing

Growing up in a fairly good sized family (there were four of us in my immediate fam and numerous cousins, aunts and uncles scattered about in my extended fam), I have been witness to the "fave syndrome".  You know what I mean - you are the oldest, so you are the fave; you are the only girl/boy, so you are the fave; you have a talent, like singing or playing an instrument that can be put on display when company comes, so you are the fave; you are pretty, so you are the fave. You get the picture.  Sometimes I have been the recipient of the doting, affirmers, as in being the first grandchild on my mother's side and NEVER doing any wrong in my grandmother's eyes! More often than not, however, I was just the eye witness. My brother, being the only boy, was waited on hand and foot.  Granted he was born in 1959, and my parent's generation looked at household tasks in a very gender specific way, i.e. boys did not wash dishes or go to the laundromat with our dirty clothes or vacuum; come to think of it, I'm not sure what my brother ever did in the way of chores! Then there was one sister, who was considered the "miracle child" because she was born with an open valve in her heart and needed a complete blood transfusion at birth, thereby rendering her incapable of pulling the shopping cart filled with laundry to the laundromat on the corner of our block. Mind you, she was perfectly capable of running like a loon through the streets playing tag and hide and go seek, but those activities must have sapped her of all strength, resulting in her not having to do any chores either. So, I witnessed quite a bit of the "fave syndrome" in my family, which left me with a sour taste in my mouth.  I will say I was on the receiving end of this syndrome with one person - my grandmother.  I could DO NO WRONG when it came to my grandmother.  It didn't matter what it was or how bad it was, she always came to my defense (especially to my mother).  "Oh so she had a few beers and she's 15.  That's only 3 years away from the legal age, and after all, she's not on drugs, is she?" Even if my grandmother really knew how bad I was, she would never have admitted it to anyone else. But I still do not like the "fave syndrome", regardless of how I was treated by my grandmother. So, when it came to us having our own children, I always had the "fave syndrome" in the back of my mind, and I would like to think we treated both of our kids fairly, never favoring one over the other, but recognizing their gifts and talents and affirming them.  And I want all my grandchildren to know they are all equal in my eyes - they all will NEVER DO ANY WRONG in my eyes! I am an EOG, after all - and Equal Opportunity Grammy!

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