Stormy interviews KitKat…

It’s KitKat’s turn to write a blog post, but she’s been felled by a bad cold lately and I suspect her Muse has abandoned her in pursuit of a chaise lounge on some distant beach. Therefore, to jumpstart the writing process–and inspire happier thoughts–I’m going to interview KitKat for this week’s post…

KitKat, what is the biggest splurge you’ve bought for yourself?

Shoes! Shoes … boots, sandals, etc. … have always been my thing. I can’t pick a pair where it was a bigger splurge than others. But anytime I treat myself to something extra special or just can’t resist the temptation, it seems to be in a shoe store. They make me happy.

I have talked myself into a shoe splurge for many reasons: I can rationalize needing them for a special event. Or, though they are expensive, it is a pair I can get lots of use of. I don’t have the exact same color or style. Or, I have a similar color or style and love them, so I need another. I am on a trip and may never see a pair like them again. I deserve a reward for finishing a tough project. I need a pick-me-up when things aren’t going well.

It sounds a little pathetic to admit, but shoes make me feel good. I can spend hours in a nice shoe store. I enjoy the entire experience of browsing, admiring shapes and special touches, and trying them on (even when I don’t make a purchase). Plus, I have never regretted a pair I bought.  There are only a few rare things in life that prove to be such a constant source of joy and passion.

My dream job would be to own a beautiful shoe boutique. It would be shoes that are for a splurge, not a necessity purchase. A place to come and spoil yourself, because we all need and deserve it sometimes.

I feel like shopping – it has been a horrible winter and I need a pick me up!

What’s the nicest compliment you’ve ever received…and why did it mean so much to you?

That is a tough one. Though I like compliments, I am horrible at getting them. I never feel like I deserve them. But on the flip side, they mean so much to me since I don’t give them to myself.

One I remember distinctly was when I visited my dad and stepmother in Colorado. My son was young, probably two or three. He has always been a handful, and I never felt like a natural at parenting. (I still often feel like I am pretending to be an adult capable of raising children.) During that trip, we visited one of their friends. As we were leaving, they told me that I was a really good mom. I don’t know why it struck me intensely, but I remember it bringing me to tears for the next few days thinking about those kind words from a virtual  stranger. Parenting is such an overwhelming job with so many unknowns. It just felt good to hear I was doing okay at it.

See?, There is an example of my compliment taking – turning “good” into “okay.”

What one thing do you hope to teach your son about how to treat women?

Right now, I am working hard to teach my son about his own self image and liking himself—things I expected to be going through when my daughter hit her teens. I didn’t know boys struggled with many of the same things. And, it’s so much harder for them to express it. It just isn’t as acceptable or talked about.

In respect to how to treat girls, I would love to instill that perfect mix of doing all the gentlemanly polite things but respecting them as equals. I know many people don’t think the two mix. I do. I love being treated like a girl, but knowing my thoughts and ideas are respected and wanted. I can have a door held open for me as I walk into a meeting, yet still argue my point and be heard right along with the “boys” at the same meeting. I would like him to understand that delicate balance.

Looking not quite so far ahead and knowing what teenage girls go though and sometimes do to be liked, I would like to ensure he is sensitive about how girls feel and not take advantage of that. To be responsible and kind. Yikes! It’s a little freaky thinking that he is anywhere near an age where this will become a possible issue.

What one thing do you hope to teach your daughter?

At age six there is plenty of self love and admiration!

At age six there is plenty of self love and admiration!

To love herself. (That is really it for both my kids.) To feel secure and proud in who she is. To take care of herself first. Try new things , take risks and not to limit herself. To feel pretty, but know there is so much more than that to be proud of. To know she doesn’t have to be perfect. It is impossible. To know that she is still loved with any and all imperfections. Forgive herself when needed. Is all of that too much to hope for?

And to surround herself with good friends and to be one. Girlfriends can help you get through anything.

What are you looking forward to in the next month?

After breaking records in cold, snowstorms and school closings, I am looking forward to a Spring Break escape to Arizona. (Followed by a girls trip to Las Vegas the following month.) It makes me smile and I can hold on to some sanity when I think of seeing and feeling the sun again. Knowing that I’ll soon be sitting in my Arizona chair (or throne as I like to call it) is all that is holding me back from going to a tanning bed just to feel some warmth on my skin, no matter what the danger.

 If you could go back in time and give your 20-year-old self some advice, what would it be?
First, I would tell her to start enjoying that 20-year old body! Give her a few insights as to what happens when you double that age. It’s hard to think about all the years I spent picking apart my looks and shape, which were both actually pretty damn good in hindsight.

I’d also tell her to keep living life. She was a risk taker. She did some stupid things, but she was full of experiences. I wouldn’t want to stop her from even some of her worst mistakes because she provided me with a lot of unique memories and some important lessons. I will be able to shock my grandchildren some day with stories from my 20-year-old self.

I might even ask her to add a few more crazy experiences to her list.

If your 20-year-old self could visit you now, what would she be impressed by?

My 20-year old self would be glad to know I am still making time for friends,  fun - and slots.

My 20-year old self would be glad to know I am still making time for friends, fun – and slots.

That I am holding down a job and actually pretty successful at it. I don’t think she thought of herself as someone who would climb the corporate ladder. Especially becoming someone who would lead others. Being smart was not how she defined herself. I think she’d be impressed and proud of that trait developing, while still recognizing her quirky self. She’d like realizing others recognize and like the whole package too.

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