Monday, July 14, 2008

Blast from the Past

I was reading this post by Stella and it really got me thinking a lot about the kids I may have someday.

I am the middle child. That should say it all. But really, it just scratches the surface. I have an older brother, with whom my parents thought the sun shone out of his ass, and a younger sister, that did and continues to get away with murder.

So back to poor Sloane the middle child. I was very awkward growing up, much smarter than the kids around me, and more mature. My parents (who really are great, despite the complaining in this post), really didn't know how to raise "Americans". They both were born in Italy, my mom coming here when she was 12, and my dad coming here when he was 25. They were and still are a bit old-fashioned and really very strict.

We always had enough. That's it. Enough. There were no extras. According to my parents, they were unnecessary. No dancing school lessons, no sleepovers, rarely a play-date with someone who lived off of my block. And I wanted those things, badly. I wanted cool LEATHER Keds sneakers, with the scrunchie socks. I wanted to wear a spangly costume and take corny pictures in a showgirl pose. I wanted to have a sleepover birthday party. I wanted to have a perm and crispy bangs like every other girl I knew. (what? I grew up in the 80's.) I look back now, and thank my parents, because they knew I would look even more hurt than I already did, what with the telescopic glasses and train-track braces.

That being said, it really wasn't until I went to high school and got a job at the Gap that I was finally able to wear cool clothes and get some kind of style. I realized that glasses can be stylish (yay!), and developed a fetish for them. I began becoming more confident with my intelligence and instead of sitting back and letting other people lead me, I became a leader.

I have always said that I want to instill in my daughter the same confidence that I missed out in my earlier years. I think that boys have it easy, little girls can be bitches. I see my niece, who is all of 7 months old, and want her to have that confidence starting very young. I have already started to amass a wardrobe for her, although my bro and sil are very aware of what she wears. She has 10 pairs of earrings already and I am going broke buying her hair bows and other accessories.

Seriously, it may not seem like a big thing, and something so insignificant, but when you are shunned because you are wearing Velcro sneakers from Fayva (all my NYC'ers know what I'm talking about), and not the latest LA Gears. It hurts. Deep.

Then when you are about to turn 32 you write a blog post about it. Who needs therapy now?


Jennifer said...

I was stuck with Fayva shoes also (we had that store here in the Midwest) and never had any of the good clothes or cute hairstyles all my friends all did. I know just how you feel. I was an only child, so I had all the attention but sometimes I just didn't WANT it. I was more of a loner that way. I think that due to my parents being terrible at their job (of parenting) that is the reason I refuse to have kids. I just don't want any because I don't feel qualified to raise them properly. I certainly wasn't and I'm still paying for it now. I went through therapy, but apparently I could use a lot more. Like I really want to think about or remember it all again.

Rage said...

I don't have my own kids.

I have Temper's. They're boys.

Enough said. I suppose having said that, there will be no wardrobe hooking up for me.

Hell, I can't even get the boys to put their damn clothes away.


stella said...

Oh, I did have the perm and the crispy bangs. The only problem was that it was a Rave home perm with crooked ass curls. Then I grew it out and in my 6th and 7th grade pictures, I had 3 to 5 inches of straight hair at the roots, and then curly frizzy hair at the tips. Nice.

I wonder if it is even possible to get a perm anymore?

Jennifer said...

Believe it or not, a few ladies I work with STILL get perms! Granted, they look like they're trapped in the 70s and 80s but yea apparently you can still get a perm these days.

Perms always dried my hair out terribly and I'd end up with totally frizzed out ends. Such a great way to go into 9th grade.

Jadeny said...

girl, I relate completely. It was Fayva shoes and Caldor clothes for me. I got picked on ALL the time by the "cool" girls.

~Penny~ said...

Umm.....I am with Jadeny, Caldor and FAYVA!..

Sloane I can not believe you just rattled my brain with that.

BTW...I only had the canvas keds that I bought 99 cents white shoe polish to keep them crisp. A tootbrush for my teeth, nope, my kicks!