Don’t you just hate it when your kid grows up to be (marginally) smarter than you? And then he doesn’t have the sense to hide it from you?
A small confession first. (Because of course, I’m all about protecting my privacy and never, ever blab my mouth off about anything personal on here. Ever.) So, very unusually, I’m divulging a cringeworthy piece of information about myself…I eat fifty Eclipse sugarfree mint candies a day. Some days I even eat a hundred of them. They are very small candies, just a teensie bit bigger than a tic tac so it’s not as awful as it sounds. There are 50 in a pack and I eat one pack a day. But if I’m being really honest, I kinda eat two packs a day. Sometimes.
Why? No, not because I have bad breath. (But then it would be really hard to tell anyways, since I eat so many Eclipse mints…) I eat them because I lust and adore them. The minty taste is divine. Kinda like eating toothpaste and sugar and ice all mixed up in one blast. I eat them while I’m sitting at my desk writing. A swig of Diet Coke and three Eclipse…consume…ice-blur your brain….write a paragraph…repeat. I used to eat TicTacs, four packs a day but then I got four cavities in one year while I was writing my first book so I switched to sugar free candy. Problem solved, right?
Umm, no. Now my teeth are fragmenting. In rather frightening zombie-like ways. I eat popcorn in the movies and end up spitting out pieces of teeth. The dentist said, ‘Yes, sugarfree mints are way better than TicTacs but 50 mints a day are definitely not good. They are wearing away the enamel on your teeth. You need to stop eating them.”
Have I stopped? Umm, no. I did try, but like most of my addictions, my “TRY” didn’t last very long. (Can I just add that Im SO glad that I never did drugs in my rebellious youth because I have such an addictive personality that oh-my-crackhead-flyinghighmarijuana-self, I would have totally embraced them.)
So I’m still eating Eclipse. And trying to pretend that it’s okay.
Big Son doesn’t approve. It might be because he cares about me. Or it might be because he doesn’t want to blend all my food for me when I’m fifty and fork out for new titanium teeth for his old mum. Or it might be because he’s a smart-a** and rather bossy.
He tells me, “You shouldn’t eat Eclipse anymore.”
I say, “I’m not chewing them anymore. I just suck on them so they can’t damage my enamel anymore.”
He says, “That’s ridiculous. That’s like saying I didn’t inhale.There’s so many chemicals in those things that you’re probably going to get cancer when you get older. You need to quit.“
I say, “You don’t understand. Eating Eclipse mints MAKES ME HAPPY, dammnit. And life isn’t worth living unless you’re happy.”
He says, “You sound just like a drug addict. That’s what they say, I can’t live without my fix.”
I’m rather horrified that my son has just compared me to a junkie. I say, “Well, look at this as a teaching moment. Learn from my mistakes and never try any addictive substances. Or Eclipse mints.”
He says, “You’re being hypocritical. What are you teaching me when you’re obviously not learning from your own mistake? If I follow your example I should knowingly, willingly engage in activities that are harmful for me just because they give me a momentary high.”
I’m not sure how to respond to such logic. He’s just so….so….right, that I am momentarily befuddled. So I do the only thing I can do.
I say, “Just be quiet. I’m your mother. I gave you life.”
He rolls his eyes at me. And I shake the Eclipse can very loudly ( and defiantly) and shoot up three of them in one go.
Because eating Eclipse MAKES ME HAPPY, dammnit. And even bad hypocrite mothers deserve some happiness in their lives.
But if anyone has the number for an Eclipse Addicts Support Group, please contact me. Secretly. Let’s not tell Big Son that I think I MIGHT have a problem. He’s fiapoto enough as it is…