I have a love/hate thing with thrift stores.
When I find something I need/want secondhand, I feel as my sister says," that I'm stickin' it to the man". I love that I'm not contributing to the overindulgent consumer driven machine. I get something that was already used and is now about to be used again.
The problem is that Liv loves thrift shopping too. She wants to buy everything...or at least some very ...absurd (in my opinion) things and then has a mega-meltdown when I don't purchase these things for her. (She once spazzed because I would by her a velvet drop waisted dress with poofy taffetta sleeves and skirt that must have been a woman's size 12 from 1983. She was going to 'grow into it'.)
I thought it would be fun to make a scarecrow. I let her decide if we were going to make a man, woman, OR child. She chose child - little girl. I let her pick the outfit. She chose an extremely neon bright floral dress with a dropped waist...I'm seeing a trend suddenly. I let her pick the hair colour. Orange yarn. Then, out of the blue, SHE wants the dress and wants to pick another dress for the scarecrow. In fact, she wants the dress, another for the scarecrow AND wants to make a 'daddy' scarecrow to be with the little girl. Fuck. Do I say 'no' because I can't afford it money or attention wise (two scarecrows is more than I can do right now) or do I say 'yes' because she wants to make a 'daddy' one because she misses Jeff. She freaks out. Cries. Plants her little feet and refuses to leave the store. Briar is getting upset because he wants to check out a different broken used toy from the shelf and wants out of the cart while he's at it. I'm afraid to make a scene because I am already fighting back tears...Our wedding song is playing over the loudspeaker.
It's these moments that I want to spaz too. A big hairy fit. Scream. Throw the fucking drop-waisted ball of tacky neon ugly dress and stomp all over it. Spit on it. Yell "What the fucking fuck did I do to create such a fucking bullshit scene?! I JUST WANTED TO MAKE A SCARECROW! I thought it would be fun for you!"
But I didn't. I swore under my breath. I thought nasty thoughts as I pulled the shopping cart with Liv hanging onto the side dragging her feet and Briar attempted to undo the seat belt. I glowered at the teenage gum-popping clerk as she slowly removed hangers and discussed which day she had off next with some of her friends standing nearby. I put the cart back. Pick up both kids. Stomped to the car. Buckled both screaming and flailing kids into the car. Locked the doors so Liv couldn't escape back to the cesspool of 80's dress rebirth. Put my head on the steering wheel and cried and swore. Thought about what a shit-ass mother I have become and that I am a total hypocrite when it comes to all my child-rearing beliefs. They're nice ideas. I just don't think I am capable of being this mellow zen mommy anymore. I'm a frothing, swearing, temper tantrum having, freak-show who has kids.
I don't think I'll be going to the second hand store anytime soon again. I'm going to have to go without a potato peeler, painting shirt, picnic basket, etc or just let the 'man stick it to me'....
The Silencing of a Poet
1 day ago