Again, for the First Time
My kids ALWAYS tell me how strange I am, of course that is not the word they use but being told not to rock your Hello Kitty pocketbook to school functions, not to wear any clothing with Disney characters on it and basically to be the mom who is seen and not heard; sums it up quite eloquently. I remember when my one daughter was about 9 and I was in her classroom for something or other with all the other parents. The other parents were schmoozing and talking about their wonderful lives, perfect existence yata-yata-yata, blah-blah-blah and I decided to draw on the whiteboard. Now don’t go and judge thinking I am not “social” because I am very social, I just don’t tend to force conversation. I am of the belief if you have nothing truthful to say draw minions on your child’s classroom whiteboard, and that is what I did. I was so focused on my creation that I did not realize I had gathered an audience behind me, the audience was not the parents obviously; it was the students in the classroom. After my realization my glace shifted to the adults in the room huddled in their cliques judging. This made me smile as it always does when I piss people off for doing things that seem absurd to me for anyone to get all judgy about! I was drawing happy minions and enjoying the kids joining in, laughing and talking. My daughter however; not so happy! She was of the mindset that I needed to RENEW myself; again this is not the word she used but this example fit seamlessly into this blog topic using the theme, RENEW with relationship to parenting, teaching, eating or random shit in between.
Prior to sitting down and writing this I did two things: 1. I asked my family members to define renew. The reason I did this was to get an understanding of what it meant to other people of all ages. I asked my 15 year old, 12 year old, 11 year old, 48 year old husband, 90 year old grandmother and 63 year old mother. All of them said, “Renew like to renew a book, to do something over again.” Except my 15 year old who added the very important idea of “getting the same item but in better condition”. He was the only one that used the word better. 2. I consulted the online dictionary which I included below. I did this to find out what it actual meant as dictated by the almighty, all knowing dictionary gods. Based on the prefix placed together with the definition of new we get: Again/appearing for the first time, backward/now existing, backward/coming further, again/strange, again/afresh….. There are other combinations but for my purpose those are enough.
My family, minus my son said you renew a library book; ok you have the same thing and take it out again. So clearly the book is not new; but new means new right? New shoes, new house, new car, new job… something that is replaces something else; or something that is a first and replaces nothing at all. Then you look at the definition of the word renew and the definition uses a bunch of other words with the prefix re-. And there it is again; to make, say or do again. But NEW doesn’t mean that at all so basically RE just takes over because you can’t make something new again. Scientifically that is impossible! Getting back to renewing one’s self as my daughter wishes I would attempt to do…. Renew is a word used by spas, retreats, doctor’s, beauty companies etc. to create this idea that you can come back again, NEW! How amazing would that be if it were actually true? If I could renew my kid on a day when they were really pissing me off, holy hell that would cut my crappy days by way more than half! If I could renew the education system, turn that whole shit into someone and get a brand new one in return, not the SAME one but NEW; a whole brand new no RE- attached new one! In terms of eating well if I had a crappy dinner and was able to ask the waiter to renew my order; why would I want the same shit again? So is that what renew really means, the same shit again, backward but forward, again but appearing for the first time?
When you look and I mean really look at something, even a word sometimes it is simply not what it seems. Unfortunately many people spend their lives looking rather that seeing. They give meaning to a situation based on their experience, understanding, exposure etc. as those adults did to me when I was happily drawing my minions. I wasn’t hurting anyone, insulting anyone, being rude in anyway (I had said hello to the people I knew); I was simply in a situation doing it differently. For me that is the definition of renew, it is about doing something again but differently to gain a different experience. I would NEVER use that word to describe anything only to reference things that it has already been assigned to. My Hello Kitty pocketbook is who I am; a spa can’t renew me, a beauty cream can’t renew me, a vacation can’t even renew me because I will always be me; I will never be again this is the only life I am aware of having and I can never be new because I am 40 years old and not willing to give up those 40 years to go backward. When you look at things try to figure out how the sums of the parts equal the whole rather than being so accepting. Look Again, RE- and find something that did not already exist NEW-; don’t be fooled by those that promise to renew you or your life; look at the word, where it came from, and what it means and think again….
a prefix, occurring originally in loanwords from Latin, used with the meaning “again” or “again and again” to indicate repetition, or with the meaning “back” or “backward” to indicate withdrawal or backward motion:
1.of recent origin, production, purchase, etc.; having but lately come or been brought into being:
a new book.
2.of a kind now existing or appearing for the first time; novel:
a new concept of the universe.
3.having but lately or but now come into knowledge:
a new chemical element.
4.unfamiliar or strange (often followed by to):
ideas new to us; to visit new lands.
5.having but lately come to a place, position, status, etc.:
a reception for our new minister.
6.unaccustomed (usually followed by to):
people new to such work.
7.coming or occurring afresh; further; additional:
1.to begin or take up again, as an acquaintance, a conversation, etc.; resume.
2.to make effective for an additional period:
to renew a lease.
3.to restore or replenish:
to renew a stock of goods.
4.to make, say, or do again.
5.to revive; reestablish.
6.to recover (youth, strength, etc.).
7.to restore to a former state; make new or as if new again.
verb (used without object)
8.to begin again; recommence.
9.to renew a lease, note, etc.
10.to be restored to a former state; become new or as if new again.