Seeing Myself in a Story
Contributor

Watching Parenthood the other night.  I just love the way they can take these complex life issues and wrap them up into tidy packages that I can handle.  So I watch the show and I say, hey, they could handle THAT, certainly I can handle whatever will face me tomorrow, right?  Anyway, in last night's episode, two parents (I can never remember TV character's names.  I'm pretty good at remembering names of people I meet, but TV characters, not so much), so the two parents of the little girl are confronted by her grandfather and accused of coddling her and not teaching her how to be a good sport, a good loser at games.  So the dad sets up this scenario where they play a game and he wins.  Temper tantrum ensues.  Off she goes to her bedroom where we hear the tirade from where the father is standing outside the door.  The mother comes home and takes his place and there she is, pouring herself a glass of wine while her daughter plays out her temper tantrum on the other side of the door.

 

The little girl has to learn to deal with her feelings, right?  Mom gets to sit outside the door and have a glass of wine, right?  I had those scenes with my kids, yes I did, but not so much the sitting with a glass of wine, maybe I should have.  But here's what I felt last night, at 52, with grown children, I now saw ME as the person on BOTH sides of the door.  I have to be the adult and know how to manage my feelings, but I also want to be the kid who gets to have a temper tantrum in her bedroom.  So how does THAT work?  Do they call this Mid-Life crisis?  Regression? 

 

A nosy psychologist could probably have a field day with that one, but I tell it to point out how stories are everywhere and we get to use them to learn about others, our world and ourselves.  It was kinda fun last night seeing myself in that story.  I'll have my temper tantrum, oh yes I will.  On my own.  With the door closed.  And maybe my poor daughter will be sitting outside the door with a glass of wine.....

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