So, I've been hanging out with these strangers lately. They're a bit older than me and they're sometimes out of touch with modern day reality, but they're wicked funny.
They're my parents.
Mom and Dad recently moved back to the Tri-State, and the Good Loving Daughter that I am, I'm helping unpack their boxes and put their belongings in order. It's a lot of Hey, look at these funny pictures I found! When did you get these tacky glasses? Hey, can I have this retro, turquoise apron?
Over the course of wrapping all the brown paper bound up in about a thousand cardboard boxes, I'm learning stories, sharing laughs and getting to know the two cool people my parents have become.
But then, I guess they've always been cool. I just didn't see them that way.
Mom and I have been laughing about all kinds of things since they moved back a week and a half ago. Nothing really significant to share, usually inside family jokes or recollections about crazy people we've known in the past, but there have been a couple occasions where we've been laughing so hard that we've each had to run for the bathroom. I think I've said before I have a pee problem when it comes to major league laughing.
Dad is continuously showing me new things about the house. Dishing details about the digital satellite dish, a new development a mi familia. Telling me about the new Gigantor television he wants to get for the pub room (a.k.a. finished basement). Telling me about the recent visit by the Invisible Fencing guy, and how the dude said might actually know of me through someone I once dated.
That's when I realized my worlds are starting to overlap - my family life and my personal life. My parents have known from afar about the crazy antics of Kate the Great. Now the circumstances have developed to a situation where Mom and Dad could actually experience/hear of/discover some of my ways first hand. Eek.
Then again, these days there's less crazy and more busy.
For a while, I wondered how much time I had to spend with Mom and Dad. One day a week? A few days a week? A weekend night? Sunday dinner? This situation is completely foreign to me. The last time I lived with my parents I was a fugly teenager who stayed holed up in my room with my books, listening to U2 Achtung Baby on repeat One love. One life. You've got to do what you should. to avoid the rest of our clan.
Now It seems I can't get enough of them.
For all that bitching I did as a kid, all the name calling and shouting and running around the house to avoid the yard stick (my mother's chosen weapon), I have come to discover that my parents are Good People.
I started liking them years ago, when we developed a relationship over the phone and though those annual visits back home for the Holidays and summer clambakes. The bummer about those visits is that my mom gets tense during special occasions, so a trip for Christmas in Connecticut usually accounted for Three snide remarks, Two shouting matches and a Partridge in a pear tree.
Now my visits have a little more levity because the stress factor is taken out of the equation. Well, most of it. My mom is a pretty high strung person as a rule. My dad is Mister Cool, and the two have a way of balancing each other out. I think I got a little bit of both in me. Don't know whether that's a good thing.
I think my parents are discovering the Softer Side of KtG. I'm not so defiant anymore. Strong? Yes. Bullheaded? Okay, maybe a little bit. But Cut-Off-My-Nose-To-Spite-My-Face? Not anymore.
I just have a pee problem where laughing is concerned.
Good thing there are lots of bathrooms in the new house.