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Worlds Closer

January 13, 2013

My relationship with my parents over the last couple of months has been stellar. As each day passes, I find myself being ever so grateful of all of the things they do for me. Especially over these past couple of months – with the teaching in the high school and feeling like I have 70 kids – I think I am one step closer to understanding what it is to be a parent.

I actually really enjoy my parents’ company now. As a teenager, it was all about answering their questions as quickly as possible so that they could – and I hate to say this – leave me alone.

But now, those precious moments when we sit at the dinner table together, or when we are shopping, or when are gathered around the tele watching Planet Earth… these are the moments that I hold near and dear to my heart.

Our conversations have evolved into something of a deeper nature as well. I mean, Dad and I would always have deep conversations about everything ranging from religion (his favourite topic) to science. But what I love most is that now, the whole family is involved.

A couple of months ago, the family was gathered around a dinner table at our favourite vegetarian restaurant. Mike (my brother) pulled out his iPod and started “gaming” away. I pulled out a book and started reading. Dad turned to us and said, “Guys! Interact with the family! Talk to us; tell us about your days; let’s have a conversation!” I looked up at my dad and smirked. This is going to be entertaining, I thought.

And soon, we were conversing away. That night’s topic was “How to find a balance between fun and work.”

Last night, we were yet again, gathered around the dinner table at our favourite vegetarian restaurant. Mike pulled out his iPod again, but this time, I knew better. We were going to converse! Awesome! I wondered what tonight’s topic was going to be.

After we ordered, Mom turned to me and asked, “Why are you a vegetarian again?” Dad turned to me, playfully slapped me on the back, smiled and said, “Because her boyfriend is a vegetarian!”

Let’s make this clear: I don’t have a boyfriend. Although, my parents seem to think otherwise. I don’t blame them though. I have been going out more so than they are used to, but I do blame my brother for planting the boyfriend seed in their brains. Every time I would be talking on the phone with someone or going out, Mike would always yell, “Who are you talking to huh? YOUR BOYFRIEND?” or “Where did you go? Did you go out with your BOYFRIEND?” At first, it made me a little nervous that he kept saying that. I mean, since I was a little girl, I have been trained to think that I should get an education first before worrying about romance. Mom was always strict on the “no dating” rule. But as I grow older, the things that she has been saying make me believe that she is okay with the whole boys thing. I just can’t tell if it’s a trick.

One night, Mike came home and told me that in the car ride home, Mom asked him whom I was dating. “Does Tina have a boyfriend?” she asked. “What’s his name?” I asked my brother what he said, and he told me, “I said, ‘Don’t worry about it!'”

I rolled my eyes.

Anyway, getting back to yesterday night’s dinner: after my dad playfully slapped me on the back and said, “Because her boyfriend is a vegetarian!” I laughed and said, “I don’t have a boyfriend!” Trust me, if I had a boyfriend, and it was serious, I would have introduced him to the family by now.

Mom turned to me, smiled, and said, “Well, if you did have a boyfriend, it would be okay.”

I made a mental note of that and said, “Well, I don’t.”

Then we talked more about why I was a vegetarian. The conversation ultimately ended at the topic of religion.

Conversations have the amazing power of bringing people together. Just with the simple, “How was school today?” from dad and the “Do you enjoy teaching?” from mom, I feel worlds closer to them. I’m excited to “grow up” now because just imagine how many worlds closer I will feel to them in a couple of years.

Paraphrase of text message exchange with former roommate M:

T: My parents think I have a boyfriend! So funny! My mom says she’s okay with it…. I can’t tell if it’s a trick.

M: It’s not a trick. You’re turning 21, she’s probably worried. Also, because you chopped off all your hair.

T: Because she thinks I’m coming out of the closet?!

Dad's reporter pad with all of his "videos to watch."

Dad’s reporter pad with all of his “videos to watch.”







And now, I leave you with a video that Dad made Mike and me sit through. Dad is so amusing. One night, he told me to come to his computer because he had “found some really beautiful videos online that teach you so much!” They were all videos from the 50s that had titles like: “Developing Social Manners” and “The Self Conscious Guy.”








Tina! Come watch this video! This is how you say no to a guy who wants to kiss you!


I suspect that he will make me watch “How Do You Know It’s Love?” (1950) tonight.


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