Wednesday, August 15, 2007


Yep, ever since I reminisced about childhood the other day, I've been thinking about all the 'sposetas of my life.

You know what a 'sposeta is. It's that thing, real or imagined, that you're supposed to do rather than do what you really want to do. 'Sposetas usually crop up alongside "it's for your own good" or "instead of" or "wouldn't you rather". They're those nagging little criticisms that mold young minds, that push the pushable into the direction the pusher wants, that cause legions of "if only" to sprout in middle age like crabgrass. Some people fight it tooth and nail. Some people give in after a token struggle. Some people don't realize it's even happening. But the worst is the person who sees it, recognizes it, hates it--but lets it happen anyway.

That was me. I wanted to get along. I wanted to make everyone happy all the time. I denied myself the path I wanted, told myself other paths were better, wanted open approval in the worst way.

I wanted to take art classes in high school but I didn't because my sister dropped art and my mother said art class was "a waste of time". I was 'sposeta take more serious courses and think of college--let me tell you, those two years of German really made a difference.

I wanted to take extra English courses my senior year, but being in AP English, I wasn't 'sposeta take regular classes. Two study halls a day was a thrill beyond imagining.

I wanted to be a writer. Bestselling, famous, all that. But I was 'sposedta have a "real" job because everyone knows writers starve. So I wasted years and opportunities galore and am no closer to realizing that dream today than I was twenty years ago.

I stopped listening to the major 'sposetas a couple of years ago. Since then my life has profited, for the most part. I'm living with a man I'm not married to and most days I'm okay with it even though I was raised on the 'sposeta get married mantra. I found a cool job that really has nothing to do with my past education and career path but that works for me and I love. I just started writing again after several months' hiatus and strictly look at it for the pleasure it brings me. Most importantly, I have a cool son with whom I am making a serious effort to limit the 'sposeta lectures with despite feeling gray hairs pop out on my head on a daily basis.

What are your thoughts on 'sposetas? Share!