Monday, 24 May 2010

Rebel With a Cause?


Deer Baby's latest post "'Snot Fair" about how she perceived her parents treated her and her sister differently, mentions her act of rebellion at age 13, when she decided to pierce her own ears.

This reminded me that my own earrings were also the act of my greatest teenage rebellion at the age of 16.

My mother has never had her ears pierced, and from a young age she made clear her disapproval. Whether this had anything to do with the fact that her mother used to wear great, heavy gold hoops I don't really know (strangely I have inherited said hoops, but do try not to wear them too often as I can't do so without thinking of my grandmother's stretched and drooping earlobes).

Of course, all my friends wore earrings, so a certain amount of peer pressure used to prompt me to regularly ask for pierced ears when birthdays or Christmas came around, but without success. With hindsight I do wonder whether it was all a cunning plan by my mother to focus my act of rebellion on something that was relatively harmless. I must make a note to try this parenting strategy on my children sometime. Either way, it seemed to work. I was a studious teenager, academic and one of the geeky crowd. I didn't hang out with the cool kids who drank and smoked.

I almost couldn't believe it myself when my friend F took me to the jewellers in the big city - I'll never forget that weird staple gun and the little packet of sterile swabs I was given.

The look on my mother's face when I came home and showed her, was a mixture of disapproval, disbelief... and I thought I could also detect the hint of a smile. She had been a bit of a wild child when younger. She would never have admitted it, but I think somehow she was secretly pleased...

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