Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Label maker

So, here's the thing. I have noticing that lately I have been having some pretty strong reactions to the labels people use to describe each other. (And by "each other" I pretty much mean, well, me. I worry sometimes that I am entirely too self-centered on this blog, which is rather amusing, given that it's a blog about, well, me.)

Back to what I was saying.....the other day at church someone referred to me as a "single mother" and my dander got all up before I realized that, well, yeah. That's a label for me. It's just that I had never labelled myself that way. And then someone said something charming along the lines of "those skinny minnies over there aren't like us" and I was cut to the quick. Uh, who exactly is the us to whom you refer there, clueless?

Reduced to just the labels, I am a single mom, working mother, red head (or at least I used to be), funny, Methodist, American, divorced, white, middle class, college educated, Bostonian, suburban, middle aged, liberal, and apparently, fat-assed. Is that how I label myself? It that really how others label me?

We are all so much more than just the sum of our parts. What labels do I chose to accept from others? What other labels do I try to take on, even though the fit isn't quite right? When I go, are my labels all I will leave behind? Yes, as eventually I will be just a story my kids tell their grandkids, and that story will be made of labels, won't it?

I hope to leave a legacy of good ones. "Loving mother. Good friend. Creative. Kind. Singular."


1 comment:

  1. This made me think of an essay I once read about nicknames. The author said that if you're lucky, the last nickname you have in your life is what your grandchildren (or maybe great-grandchildren!) call you. May we both be so lucky. xxoo