A few Facebook friends – mothers – recently asked their offspring a series of questions to ascertain how well the young children know their mom. I followed along; amused by some of the responses. I wondered how the exercise would play out with my young adults who are 25 (J) and 27 (B) years old.
And so, without prompting my kids, I asked these questions and wrote down exactly what they said.
What is something I say a lot?
J: “Nooo….soooo” and “oh yeah!”
B: “I’m funny!” and “you betcha”
What makes me happy?
J: The new house. The dogs. Yokneam. Me.
B: Being with family. Judaism. Israel. Proving people wrong. Making someone laugh. Being right. Seeing your kids achieve. Dancing. Your grandparents. Your dogs. Your house. Getting upgraded to first class.
What makes me sad?
J: Talking to Baba Oydah and Zaydie Cha (when they say they won’t be around much longer). When I’m sad or when you say goodbye to me or Randi.
B: Feeling like you upset or disappointed your kids. Saying goodbye to Randi. Feeling like your goal or dream isn’t shared by someone. Your son spending a vacation with in-laws and not you.
What’s my favorite thing to do?
J: Walking on the beach.
B: Lying around with your dogs. Getting dressed up for an evening.
What’s my favorite food?
J: Things that are Greek and Key Lime Pie and Lobster
What’s my favorite drink?
J: Harvey’s or Pina Coladas
B: Harvey’s or cappuccinos
If I could go anywhere, where would it be?
B: Hilton Head
Do you think you could live without me?
B: Literally? Yes. Would prefer to not have to.
How do I annoy you?
J: When you tell me I’m being a brat.
B: You always need the last word (but, so do I!).
What’s my favorite TV show?
J: Dancing With the Stars
B: Criminal Minds
What’s my favorite music to listen to?
J: Maroon 5 and One Republic and Josh Groban
B: Rascal Flatts or Whitney Houston
What’s my favorite color?
J: Orange and red and Tuscany colors
How much do you love me?
J: A lot…an infinite amount
B: To the moon and back
For the record, my kids have me pegged…mostly. (Apparently they don’t know my favorite thing to do or TV show. But they do know what’s most important…how much I love them.)
The exercise was fun, but also telling. How well do we know those with whom we live or spend time or love? How well do we make our own wants, needs, and interests known? Everyone wants to feel understood and valued, but we have to remember that others are not mind readers. We must communicate directly and openly. In building deep relationships, asking questions and paying attention are just first steps. Then comes spending meaningful time together.
And, while I may seem to be an open book, that doesn’t mean I can’t have a secret or two….