Saturday, 6 November 2010

5 things I've been lied about

I don't know why but recently, I had a sudden flash about my childhool and a few things I used to believe at that time. Things I had been told, I have been taught to expect, things I was looking forward to.  Whatever they tell you, childhood is not the perfect time you tend to remember when you grow older; it's got its frustrations too, and parents, in order to ease them, will make promises that life won't always be able to keep.  Now here is just a little list of those kind of half-lies that I was told and, at almost thirty, I realize will never become true. No hard feelings here, I am rather smiling when writing this, because if it triggered a kind of disappointment as an adult, the hope certainly made my life as a child easier - and then, I was so naive, too...

1.  Now, the obvious one will be this Santa Claus (or Saint Nicolas) story. But that's definitely the kind of lie I am glad I was told, and I don't remember being sad at learning (I don't remember how) that this was all a tale. Christmas evenings and Saint Nicolas days have been my best memories, and I soon discovered that the best part in having younger siblings is, even when you're too grown up to pretend believing in them, you keep on receiving presents. And when you're an adult, you can start making presents, which is great too. The one who invented these traditions definitely had a bright idea.

2.  When I was a child, I truly resented having to work in the evenings, after school, doing homeworks and studying lessons.  I remember one evening working hard on trying to force into my head a stupid lesson about the flower's reproduction system, with crazy scientific names (about five of them) and impossible processes.  That evening, I complained to my parents: why do I need to work still after I come back home, and you don't ? Their answer was very practical : wait when you'll grow up, you won't have to do any homeworks anymore. So I waited. I grew up. I moved on my own, got a job... and realized that this was all a lie: after leaving work, you still have a collection of household tasks to do, the kind of things that, as a child, I thought were made automatically (food grew in the fridge, clothes cleaned themselves in the closets, this kind of things). And now, without even having children to take care of, I find myself with even fewer free time during the week than I had as a child, which is a bitter disappointment. Although, let's be totally honest, after a full day's work, going grocery shopping, cooking and even cleaning do feel like a bliss.

3.  Another problem I faced as a child - and as a teenager - was waking up in the morning. I'm not lazy, I'm just not a morning person. I never missed a morning but I always had a hard time opening my eyes. Once again I complained: why do we need to wake up so early when it's so hard ?  The answer I got was either accusative or full of hope: it's hard because you should go to bed earlier, but anyway, when you'll grow older and work, you'll get used to getting up early and it will be easy.  Now I'm grown up, I've been waking up around the same time every week day for the last ten years, and honestly, it's not any easier. I have tried going to bed earlier too, but it doesn't help. I have learned to drink coffee, I have found a very efficient alarm clock, but in any case, if you let me lie down for a few minutes any time during the morning, I'll fall back asleep within seconds. The way it looks, if I ever get used to waking up early, it won't be before many years - and by that time I'll almost be retired and allowed to sleep.  Life is unfair.

4. "After school, you'll be able to choose the job you want to do." That I've heard plenty of times, and believed in it, too. Now I would like to make a poll and ask a thousand of people in every kind of situation: if you could chose any job in the world, would it be the one you're doing now ?  I'm guessing I'd get an overwhelming majority of "no". I'd find it fair to tell children instead: "you probably won't do the job you're dreaming of, but keep on trying, it might happen.  And if it doesn't, don't worry, you'll get used to the job you'll get and whatever it is, you'll be able to build yourself a nest of happiness." That's more what life is like, and I don't see why we should try and hide it to our kids.

5.  Speaking of kids, I had that long period as a teenager when I claimed loudly that I'd never have children. The usual answer would come with an incredulous/you-don't-know-what-you're-talking-about kind of look : "When you grow up, you'll want to have babies, you're just not mature enough now". Well, I'm thirty, a lot of people around me are having children, and I can see one thing: they're all complaining. They wanted the kids all right, but once they have them, their life becomes a daily misery. Check your facebook account, reader, have a close look at the status of those of your friends who have young children, and you'll see what I mean.  As for myself, I'm thinking I'll have some children some day, but mainly because the baby/child state is a necessary step before you get the fun of living with someone who resembles you a little, loves you a lot, and whom you can assist in building a personnality. That doesn't come before the age of 10, I think. So that really destroys the old idea that I'll want to have babies. Plus, I assume that if you're supposed to be "mature" before you wish for something, it means that that wish is not much fun.

What about you, readers ?  What kind of lies were you told as a child ?

1 comment:

  1. Mes parents m'obligeaient à manger les verdure en me disant que j'aurais crû beaucoup… eh non… ma taille est dans la moyenne. .tendente au bas. Sigh !