Growing up I used to hear the phrase, “You’ll understand when you…” My mom, my brother, my teachers, pretty much anyone older than me would start a sentence with that phrase. It was usually followed with a qualification that one had to meet in order to truly appreciate the struggle of the speaker’s life. I didn’t believe it then and I damn sure don’t believe it now. Not to toot my own horn, but I was an intelligent and insightful kid. I still am minus the parts of my brain that were drown in alcohol or fumigated with random poisonous smokes. Why couldn’t I have understood what they were saying at the time? Because they were full of shit. What I didn’t know then, and I do know now, is that that statement is merely a cover for mediocrity and failure.
I hear this even today. Someone will tell me that I’ll understand their position when I do this, or experience that, or get to that age. I hate to burst your bubbles, but chances are that none of you are experiencing a struggle or challenge that is unique. Many have experienced it before you, and many will after you, and even if they haven’t, that doesn’t mean that they don’t understand it.
My mother used to use this as an excuse for why she treated me the way that she did. She’d always say, “You’ll understand when you have kids of your own.” Or if her and my stepdad, or my father were fighting she’d say, “You’ll understand when you’re married.” “You’ll understand when you have a REAL job.” “You’ll understand when you’re an adult.” Well guess what…oh, did you guess? No! Did you? Well shit. I guess you did! I’m a parent. I’m a husband. My job is more real than anything my mom ever did, or at least I make way more money than she ever did. I’m a fucking adult (though I still act like a kid sometimes)! I don’t understand anything that she did. In fact, the more of life’s stages that I reached, the less sense anything that she did made to me.
I look at my daughter, and my son and I can’t imagine treating them the way that she treated me. I can’t imagine treating my wife the way that she treated my stepdad, and I can’t imagine behaving the way that she did, ever. There are NO excuses that she has left. I’ve reached all of those stages. She’d complain that she had a rough childhood. Well tick that off my list! She complained that she grew up poor. Hey so did I! She complained that she didn’t get to go to college. Hmmm, no diploma on my wall. She complained about her mental problems. Well her own damn doctor diagnosed me with the same bullshit disorders. What else is left? At some point, the slight possibility comes to light that she may just be a self-pitying lazy ass, 100% typical American woman. No offense to the ladies, but the majority of you that I have met are irrational, whiny, needy, dependent, and most importantly completely self absorbed.
Praise Jesus in heaven, that I found a woman who isn’t like that. I tell my wife frequently that she’s basically a man in a really hot chick’s body. Of course, she’s not the only one of her species. I’ve met many women like her, but they’re definitely the minority. But wait, don’t think that stupidty is being hoarded. Nay…men have the moron gene too. I remember being told by one person that I’d understand their mentality and methodology for parenting when I had more than 1 kid. I wasn’t a real parent until I had more than one kid. I’m approaching 2 years into my second, and not much has changed. I was told by another person, that my marriage wouldn’t be all smiles and happy times after we’d been together a while. 10 year anniversary coming up this summer and I still can’t get enough of my wife.
Now don’t think that’s just me spewing rhetoric because I know my wife reads this. No no. I truly would rather be with her than anyone else. The proof is in the pudding. If you’re reading this, and you know me, then ask yourself when the last time I hung out with you without her was. Chances are good it was an occasion that she couldn’t come to. Oh and unlike many men that I know, it’s not because she bitches about it. It’s because I actually prefer her to anyone else that I’ve ever met. Hence the reason why I made her my permanent roommate, and started making people with her. Crazy idea, I know. Marry your favorite person, your REAL best friend. What good are acquaintances when your best friend is a really hot chick that you can sleep with, who is also a blast to hang out with?
So I’m getting old, I’m making babies, I’ve got a 9-5, I own a house, I pay taxes, I have life insurance, I eat healthy, I go to bed at a reasonable hour, and nothing that my parents, or anyone else I know, ever did makes any sense. They said it would, and it still doesn’t. I was told that music was just a phase and that it would pass. Well, here I sit in a room with 8 guitars, a full studio, drums, lyrics everywhere, and I’m still pouring out music. I was told the policy of going to bed when you’re tired instead of at an arbitrary time wouldn’t work when my kids were in school. Hmm, daughter just went to bed at her own pace and she’s been in school for 3 months now. That’s weird. “You mean she hasn’t dropped dead from that yet?” No, my good sir, she hasn’t.
What about my policy of hoes before bros? I was told that after many years of marriage I’d be craving “man time” and I’d need a good circle of friends to hang out with, and to get away from the family with. Well, I’ve learned that the bros are nothing but selfish pricks who don’t really give a shit about me. Sure they’re good for a few laughs over beers, but when I really need someone to show up for me, I can only think of one “bro” who would. One out of everyone that I’ve ever know, who would literally do anything to help me out. Strangely he’s the only one who’s never started a sentence “You’ll understand when you…”
What’s my point? Nothing. I never have points. I’m hear to waste your time. It’s just intriguing to me how desperately we struggle to rationalize and justify our own failings. Rather than admitting that we’re shitting parents, friends, spouses, or anything else we just tell others that they haven’t experienced what we have, and therefore, they don’t understand why we’re as worthless as we are. Get over yourself. If you’re a failure, then it’s your fault. The odds were against my brother and I turning out to be good fathers, good husbands, not dirt poor, and not completely psychotic douche bags, but somehow we made it out. Well, we’re both a bit psychotic, but only in the fun ways. No more excuses, for any of us.