As a younger adult with parents still alive and well, something that weighs pretty heavily on my mind is their opinion of me. Since I was very little, I remember desiring above all else to make my parents proud. That can sometimes feel more like a prison sentence than a goal, but it is something I hold very close to my heart. I know that my parents aren’t perfect, but they did the best they knew how, and I may be a little biased in saying that they produced a pretty successful kid (well, technically three of us, but I can’t speak for my brother and sister, now can I?)
When my dad mentioned he was going on a business trip, I volunteered to pick him up from the airport. He has been in negotiations and conferences all weekend and I offered to have him sleep on our couch instead of driving all the way back to his home. What he doesn’t know is that because I knew he was coming over today, I busted some serious tooshie trying to make our apartment moderately presentable, clean and smelling like respectable people live here. I also went with my husband to the store yesterday (because we were desperately low on edible goods) and picked up some things to make my dad the most fancy dinner we can afford. Why?
Because my parents went without a lot of times. I know that. I may not have understood it when I was younger, but I damned sure do now. I know that my dad is pretty stubborn and that he and I have the exact same attitude and that makes for an interesting time (especially when I was a teenager). My parents work hard, they do their best to provide everything for my sister (who is currently the only one living at the house, because she’s still in high school) and I appreciate their struggles and hard work much more now that I am living on my own (ish) than when I was living under their roof. Do I still think some of the things they do are cooky? Sure. I mean, I am from a different generation afterall. But when I offered my dad a place to rest today, I knew I wanted to do something nice.
When my parents helped my husband and I move into our apartment my dad made the comment that I should buy him dinner somewhere as payment. That’s all he ever asks for: a warm meal in exchange for his help. And I know he meant dinner out somewhere. But I know that I can’t afford that right now, so a home cooked meal will have to do.
I tried my best, had my husband taste the meat (cause I really don’t eat meat if I can help it-and haven’t for almost 4 years now), I made a bunch of yummy, wholesome side dishes and I put some coffee on, stuck some Dr. Pepper in the fridge and now I’m waiting. I have no idea when he’ll get here, but I think I’m more excited than he’ll be.
Anyway, all this comes down to one thing: I want to show my parents (but at this very moment my dad) that they raised a successful, well-mannered daughter who understands common decency and thankfulness-but is still full of sass and shenanigans. I don’t want my parents to come visit me and it look like I haven’t done anything but loaf about for months on end. I want them to rest easy knowing that I’m not a complete screw-up. And I hope that’s what I prove.
Now, that’s not to say that either of my siblings are disasters-this all only applies to me and how I see things. Like I said, I can’t speak for either of them. That’s just the way it is.
I started this post last night (obviously) and just wanted to say that dinner went well. I think he understood that I tried my best, and I woke up and made breakfast (another thing I usually don’t do) and it was good. All in all, I think it went okay!