Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Wah Dahgu Siam

The Red Dress Club's memoir assignment this week {now referred to as Remembe(red)} was to make a list of some of your most vivid childhood (or more recent) memories. Then pick one and write it down in as much detail as possible. Then investigate what this memory means to you. Ask yourself the following questions: Why has this stuck with me? What did this mean to me at the time? Why did I (or someone else in the scene) react the way I (they) did? How does it feel to look back on it? How does it still affect me (or not)?

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It was night. We were in our PJs in the kitchen.  I was seven or eight years old. Wearing my long-sleeved Smurfette nightgown and holding Pinky, my pink teddy bear (I was terribly original). It was the house that had a crack down the middle of the foundation so I could stand at one end of the kitchen in my roller skates and roll to the other end. The one with the avocado green linoleum, the white formica kitchen table with gold flecks in it and chairs that were covered in goldenrod vinyl. That night, while my little sister and I stood there, Mom told us she had a story and that we could play along.

Once upon a time, there was a prince of Siam who made his subjects bow to him while chanting "Wah...Dahgu...Siam." Mom was playing the part of the prince, Sister and I were playing the subjects. Arms raised, bending at the waist, saying it over and over, a little faster each time. "Wah..Dahgu..Siam, Wah Dahgu Siam, Wahdahgusiam, WhaddaGooseIAm." Mom's eyes twinkling as we realized what we were saying. Sister and I laughing at ourselves and at Mom for being so funny.

My mom, as I imagine is true for most stay-at-home-mothers, spent most of her time cooking, cleaning, clipping coupons, shopping, caring for us, shuttling us to activities, sewing, and paying bills/budgeting. Not to mention, she also spent a fair amount of time removing wallpaper, painting and doing other home improvement tasks as my parents flipped houses to make a little extra so Mom could stay home with us. She was the one who was in charge of us all day. She had to referee fights, clean up messes and deal with drama. So there wasn't a lot of time left to be silly. Ever since I can remember, I thought my mom was smart, brave, caring, kind, calm, patient, honest, polite, and a myriad of other wonderful traits. But I think this memory stuck with me because it's the first time I remember thinking my mom was funny. And she really has a great sense of humor. But it was overshadowed by her other traits. And the fact that Dad is a joke-telling, gregarious, funny guy. So he was the "fun" one because we didn't see him all day. I think this memory of the silly side of my mom serves as a big reminder to me to have fun and be silly with my kids as much as possible.


Jessica Anne said...

That is so funny! It's great when we can recognize and appreciate our parents as people and not just caregivers.

Rebel Chick said...

I never realized how hard my mom worked to be the 'fun one' until I grew up and tried to be just like her!

Cheryl said...

You know I'm so going to try this with my kids today.

When I'm silly, my kids tell me I'm "being weird." Sigh.

K Pugliano said...

Oh, this makes me brim with hope that someday, my daughter will see my humor and not call it weird!!

Lovely post! Good job! :)

Lori @ In Pursuit of Martha Points said...

My mom was a working mom. So her days were spent working, her evening were spent cooking, and her weekends were spent cleaning.

But I remember one evening she and my brother and I sitting on her bed and she was holding a little stuffed toy mouse. She tugged at the mouse with her thumb and it's head bobbed.

We giggled.

She did it again and added a little sound. "Mrrf."

We laughed.

She did it again. Tug and "mrrf."

We cracked up.

She didn't often have the time or energy to do nothing but make us laugh. And so I rememeber.

Jackie said...

It's funny how dads are often the funny ones while moms aren't!

Oh... I think that maybe we lived in the same house at one point! LOL! I remember that lovely shade of green... all of our appliances were that color.

Kristy said...

That is precious! A vivid recollection too with the Smurf jammies!

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