Tuesday, March 27, 2012

I'm an expert

In my house right now are a few stacks of books.  Books that came recommended by people who should know about this stuff.  Books written by so-called experts.  Books that are supposed to help you improve your relationships and give you new tools to help develop healthier connections with those around you.

Marriage books and parenting books and self healing and introspection books and more.

What does it mean if they all, collectively, just seem to piss me off?

I think that part of my biggest problem is that I don't do well being condescended to, and any kind of self-help book comes with a sizable amount of condescension.  Clearly the reader is doing something wrong, and clearly the writer knows better.  Pat, pat, pat.

I've got my fair share of problems, and I have never claimed to have it all figured out.  Obviously I haven't, or I wouldn't bother with these books at all.

They aren't doing any good to me though.

If anything, they are just frustrating me more.

Nothing speaks to me, to my situation, to my life.  No parenting expert has dealt with the set of challenges and experiences I have.  No marriage counselor has been in my house or my life.  No amount of peaceful reflection is going to help me get centered and balanced right now.

I figure at this point in my life, I am doing just fine.  With everything that has happened lately, I haven't ended up on the news.  Not even once.  That's got to be a sign of success.

Maybe I'm setting the bar a little low, I'll admit that.  But that's about as good as it is going to get.

And maybe that is why these books are just frustrating me.  Maybe I just need to stop reading them for a while.  Maybe if and when I am ever in a better place, they won't piss me off quite so much.

Or maybe they are all just really and truly full of terrible advice, and it's not my perception of them at all.  Maybe they really are horribly written and condescending.  Maybe they really don't apply to me at all.  Maybe the so-called experts writing them don't know what the hell they are talking about.

Maybe I should just write these books.

I've got a lot of life experiences under my belt and I'm not on the news.  That's got to count for something.
People ask me for advice all the time, though I'm not always sure why.

That's it.  It's final.

I'm declaring myself an expert.

Right now, I'm an expert on surviving.

That, and extracting confessions from children.
Take a guess at which one was the guilty party.
These are my kids, lined up against the wall yesterday on the first day of Spring Break.  Someone had made a terrible mess and no one confessed.  They took turns throwing each other under the bus, then Ally gave a false confession in an attempt to end the waiting game.  I won.  The guilty one finally copped to it...and it's probably not the one you guessed based on the picture.

I won.

I'm an expert.

I should totally write a book or something.

You'd buy it, right?  ;)


  1. oh my god. You are so winning. You should write a book. I probably wouldn't read it because I've had it with self help and expert books too, but girl, doing what you do every day makes you an expert at YOUR LIFE. Kudos to you. xo

  2. Ah the joys of self help books. Hang in there and get through it your way until it stops working. And yes, I'd buy your book.


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