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Welcome to Shut Up About Your Perfect Kid

Therapy and sanity for ordinary parents of special kids.

Today’s Guest Blogger – Diane Mierzwik

OK folks, we’ve got another treat for you. This one’s even better (and a lot less fattening than the treats from the ice cream man). Today’s blog is from Diane Mierzwik. Diane is the author of “Weekly Affirmations for Premenopausal Women” (James A. Rock Publishers) as well as three other books. She blogs at

I have prided myself in enjoying the things my son enjoyed. I watched Sesame Street and Winnie the Pooh. I listened to Disney soundtracks and Wee Songs of Joy. I might have been busy with the dishes whenever Thomas the Tank was on, but the dishes had to be done some time.
Once he got older, we listened to Lincoln Park and watched Mtv together. I was never afraid of participating in his generation’s entertainment. I’d even watch intently while he played his computer and video games. Watching might be exaggerating. Listening might be more accurate since my eyes were closed as I dosed.

So, I felt so sorry for the dad I saw one morning taking his son to school. While my son and I sang along to the radio together on our drive to school, this man had to cart around a son who had earplugs hooked up to an IPod and was staring out the window. How sad, I thought in my motherly naiveté.

Only two short years later, I happily took away the privilege of watching Viva La Bam at the slightest hint of disrespect. Then, without asking,  I borrowed my son’s IPod Shuffle for a jog. Turning the shuffle on, I jogged a few blocks not really listening to the lyrics, still trying to get into that jogging rhythm at my age is generally mistaken for limping along when I was stopped dead in my tracks – no, seriously, I think my heart stopped – shocked by the lyrics I knew my son had spent his hard-earned, I mean my hard-earned money on.

I kept hitting fast-forward to the next song, searching for the music we listened to together.

Then I realized, I had stumbled upon his contraband music. Oh, I know about contraband music. I had my own.  The music I got in trouble for was Butthole Surfers. My dad didn’t know the lyrics to my favorite song, which had lines about being down on my knees. This I hid, as I’m sure there was music my dad hid from his dad.

But suddenly, I didn’t want to know. I turned off the his Ipod and listened to myself breath so hard I sounded like a freight train.

The next time we were on a road trip, with my new understanding of our growing generational rift, I reminded my son to bring his Ipod. It seems as I have gotten older, I’m more interested in listening to what he calls “old lady” music and am happy to hum away, glancing his way occasionally and musing about what a cherub he is, wearing earphones and staring out the window so serenely.

3 Responses to Today’s Guest Blogger – Diane Mierzwik

  1. Lisa March 22, 2012 at 10:19 pm #

    Oh, Diane, I could have written this (if I could write as well as you). I too listened to the Disney music, know every Arthur episode by heart (which we still watch). But now my 13-year-old also wants to watch Family Guy and she listens to Alice in Chains. So when she has her iPod on in the car, I get to listen to NPR. Heck, when I was 13 I was listening to the Village People and “racy” disco songs (sometimes, but not always, getting the meaning), so who am I to judge? 🙂

  2. Diane Mierzwik March 23, 2012 at 1:34 am #

    Thanks Lisa!

  3. Vanda March 23, 2012 at 2:31 pm #

    I hear, back in the day, organ music was “of the devil”! Imagine that!

    I think comparing generations is so interesting. Can you imagine your son, frozen, mid-stride, over lyrics HIS child is listening to? Who knows. By then music will probably be telepathically transmitted from some i-cloud and we will never know exactly what is being sung!!!

    Fun read. Thanks

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