Lisa and I plus Grandma were talking at the dinner table about the foods Dean used to to eat when he was little. He was a pasta fiend. Especially lasagna.
From ages one to two he inhaled lasagna like there was no tomorrow. Then somewhere about four, it all changed. He wouldn’t touch the stuff. We still don’t know what that’s all about. He laid off all meat ‘type’ products until he was about 6.
Then he began to like to chicken and hamburgers. For some reason he won’t go back to pasta. But I’m sure that’ll happen.
We’re talking about this in front of him at the dinner table. He was visibly upset, but I assumed it was because he wasn’t eating the one pork-n-beans ‘bean’ we had put on his plate to try before he could be excused.
Apparently, it wasn’t about the bean. It was about the embarrassment of being talked about at the dinner table. Which he told me later.
I understood his embarrassment.
…And Step On It!
Legend has it that my Grandpa wanted a cheeseburger.
It was one of those special visits from the Grandparents, and Dad must have been making burgers on the grill.
Three year old, bright eyed Stu was eager to help out any way possible. When Grandpa asked little Stu to
“Get me a hamburger and step on it”
I knew just what to do.
And yes, you know where this is going. If you don’t, you’ve never had a small LITERAL child running around your house.
I grabbed the burger from dad and got it over to Grandpa. Dropped it on the floor. And stepped on it.
Needless to say, that story was put on parade for as many Christmases, Thanksgivings, and birthdays as I can remember.
It was always told right along with stories of other funny things I did as a kid which I’ll have to tell you about later.
But I remember that embarrassment too.
Story as a way to remember
Its a funny thing, stories.
They help us remember events – especially of the ones we love. You probably can come up with at least one or two from your kids, or your parents or grandparents if you just sit here for a second and think about it.
They connect us in ways that nothing else can.
As Dean told me he was upset and embarassed about us talking about his dislike of Lasagna , I told him I enjoy him as he’s growing up. Then I told him some of the best ways to enjoy one another are to tell stories. And my intent wasn’t to embarrass, but to celebrate him and the memories we have shared.
Then I told him my ‘Step on it’ Story…which got a good laugh and a… “Can I go tell Mom!!?”