Wednesday, June 24, 2009

A dose of reality

All of this hoopla surrounding a certain reality tv family has somehow managed to forced me to look at my own family from an audience perspective.

If I had complete control over the editing, this is what you would have seen today:

-The husband spending the early part of the morning helping out by walking the dogs, getting C some milk, making the coffee, and writing a list of things I would like for him to bring home after work.
-Me doing dishes, laundry, sweeping, picking up toys, jotting down some ideas for our curriculum in the fall, and marking the kids' height on our laundry room door.
-H flipping through a cookbook, looking for new things to make.
-H and M climbing trees, playing with bugs, and making a hopscotch board on the deck.
-C being all cuddly and cute, saying "please" repeatedly, using the potty, and hugging the cats.
-J helping with a few morning chores and drawing his own comic strip.

If I had no control over the editing, this is what you would have seen today:

-The husband walking around like a zombie this morning (poor guy had to spend last night getting paid to hang out in bars), completely 'forgetting' to feed and water the dogs, and telling me we already have plenty of milk (not what the fridge told me at 3:00).
-Me doing last night's dishes, boiling cloth diapers because I let them get too much soap build up, sweeping 3 times and still having crumbs, tossing toys into the mound we call "the toy pile", debating whether or not the girls can handle anatomically correct illustrations I wasn't really expecting in one particular book, and making C cry every time I tried to straighten his knees to be measured.
-H having every recipe she chose shot down because we're missing at least 3 ingredients.
-H and M getting yelled at for hanging upside down in trees, throwing bugs at each other, and for shaking the entire deck while I'm trying to write this.
-C trying to convince me to play trains while I try to distract him, running around the house nekkid through most of the morning, and choking the cats.
-J willing to do anything to escape the bedroom he's supposed to be cleaning, and thinking I don't know that he's drawing instead of cleaning.

Then there are the things I wouldn't be able to decide on. What would the world think if they saw my girls announce that they were going to potty train their brother? They even set up a folder to time his potty trips and track his successes, and they decided to reward him with honey roasted peanuts. Adorable kids? Slacker mom? Inappropriate mixing of the sexes?

How about the theft of the red Jell-o packet? Would that shot catch me in the background, playing Bejeweled Blitz?

And would it even be possible to get any of this on tape without hearing Annie, iCarly and Thomas the Tank Engine through the vast majority of it? Not to mention the 4-letter words I can't seem to keep from slipping out.

It's interesting trying to view the day from two different perspectives. You can't edit anything and then still call it reality. You can't boil hours down to 20 or 40 minutes of clips and pretend it's honest.

If that sounds like I'm trying to defend anyone, I'm not. I am, and always will be, against selling childhoods.
But I'm having fun picturing our 1-hour special!

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