My mother comes out with some ridiculous things some times. Between the selective hearing and advice, she comes out with some total corkers that really need to be documented for prosperity. I call them Mother-isms. The sort of thing that you assume all Mothers say; it is a Mother-thing, a by-product of giving birth and raising children. There is a difference between the idiosyncracies of say, my Mother-in-Law who consistently confuses the names of her own children and the gems that come from my Mother.
It has taken being a Mother myself and also age to learn that this is not normal. Not rare, by any means, but also not what you should come to expect to fall out of your mother’s mouth.
To highlight this, I am about to give two anecdotes of particularly special (but not isolated), Mother-isms.
We were in Bradford on a visit and I am shovelling banana down my son’s mouth because he is grumpy due to too much car seat travel. We are in my Mum’s car. The conversation goes as thus:
“Does he have banana every day?”
“Yes he loves them. He can go through a few a day if we let him. If in doubt, give him banana.”
“Oh you have to be careful about giving him too many bananas. They cause worms.”
“They do. They cause worms.”
“Don’t be bleeding ridiculous Mum. Bananas do not cause worms.”
“They do soandso’s lad [insert name of any distant family friend here and their child] had worms and he loved bananas, had two or three a day. Then he got worms.”
“I doubt it was the bananas that caused the worms, Mum.”
“It was, their doctor said so. You can’t feed them too many bananas because they cause worms.”
“Mum, bananas do not cause worms. Parasites do. They come in many foods not just bananas.”
“Well this doctor said bananas caused the worms.”
“We went to your aunt and uncles, I am afraid they served crumble and ice cream for pudding so we had to feed him some. He was so excited to see it.”
“Mum, you know we don’t want him to have that stuff but it’s done now. Please don’t let him have any again.”
“Well, I was telling your Uncle about your food rules and he said they did the same when your cousin was born, only giving him fruit, not allowing him sweets or any treats and now he has all these allergies. They didn’t do it with the others so they put it down to the diet when he was younger.”
“Mum, are you seriously saying that feeding a child sweets, chocolate and ice cream is going to prevent them from getting allergies? You are actually trying to convince me of that?”
“I’m just saying, that’s all.”
Yep, bananas give you worms and sugar prevents allergies.