Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Mother Jekyll and My Fear of Turtle Rattles

So I have all these values and deeply-held beliefs about a lot of things I'm passionate about, but then there's another part of me that rolls my eyes at that principled part of me, and I don't know who the heck I am.


Enlightened Kimber: Believes in organic, whole foods for her family, especially her little cherub.
Sweatpants Kimber: Arms herself with a bags of MSG-spiked goldfish on plane rides and at church to appease her howling spawn.

Enlightened Kimber: Believes that childbirth is a spiritual, natural process that has been hijacked by a society plagued fear and ignorance.
Sweatpants Kimber: Is going with a certified nurse midwife again, but can't say the word "doula" with a straight face. Images of a dreadlocked woman of Irish descent waving a rattle made from a turtle skeleton over my pregnant belly (hate that word) haunt my natural childbirth dreams. Also, terms like "bag of waters" and "birth caul" make me feel awkward. Heck, I can't even handle "placenta."

Made by "Tommy Wildcat." No joke.

Enlightened Kimber: Loves art and self-expression through music and maybe (gasp) dance.
Sweatpants Kimber: Hates artists. Runs over dancers.

There's one part of me that loves the refined, the cultured, the meaningful ... then there's the other part that thinks it's hilarious when Graham burps and would prefer to laugh at Fat Amy in Pitch Perfect than watch Citizen Kane.

Is Sweatpants Kimber just the natural woman? She is kind of more fun to be around, though not as deep and principled as Enlightened Kimber. Maybe it's the know-do gap? I know better, but I don't always put my knowledge into practice?

I think some of it has to do with my family tradition. Hamsons aren't low-brows by any means, but we do know the value of a good pan of meatloaf (which we eat at the kitchen table because the formal dining room is home to not a formal dining table, but an air hockey table and a foosball table). Hamsons aren't openly emotional (unless spazzy is an emotion, or else when Dad is reading The Friend) or especially concerned with artistic expression or "culture." We often had deep conversations about religion, though, and I loved the analysis and meaning that always came from those talks.

Our family found connection in competitive games of backyard volleyball instead of trips to the art museum. But my mom instilled in all of us a love of reading books both classic and popular, and my dad took us several summers to the local Shakespeare festival, where we got in for free in exchange for spending intermission collecting empty wine bottles and picnic refuse from the boozy foodies with the good seats.

Then there was the year my mom took Nathan and I, newly married, to the festival. She'd prepared the most delightful little picnic of strawberry and turkey croissant sandwiches (with poppyseed dressing--sounds weird, tastes like perfection), fruit, and gourmet single-serving desserts. Then my mom accidentally broke the glass dressing bottle, and we tried semi-successfully to retrieve all the shards from the dressing. We missed one that ended up on Nathan's sandwich, and we all had a good laugh about how my mom was passive-aggressively trying to kill her new son-in-law via glass shard poisoning. Maybe that illustrates our approach to classiness. We appreciate our sophisticated croissant sandwich experiences, but we also laugh when we almost ingest broken glass.

Off to read a book about the divinity of birth while I eat a vegan cookie along with an Almond Joy.


  1. Oh, Kimber! You peg everything so perfectly. And I DID just finish reading Farenheit 451 (because Dan has to read it for school.) So, do I let him read it for its wonderful literary value, or do I NOT because it is full of taking the Lord's name in vain?

  2. Oh this one made me laugh out loud. Loved the broken glass story. This fits us to a tee! Black it out mom.

    1. It's a school book. Maybe I should ask to black the words out for future Mormons or anybody who wants a copy like that.

    2. I don't think blacking words out is effective. It always makes me think of the word that much more.

  3. oh my....I could totally picture some of the things you wrote about! But..it just made me miss your family that much more :(

  4. I get that. I was just telling a friend of mine about how I'm a snob, but I make fun of myself for being such a snob. So that makes my snobbery ok right?

    (But seriously why do people think it's cool to add "lyn" to an otherwise perfectly good baby name? Surely it's ok to be snobby about that.)

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  6. Hmmm: this might mean you are a balanced person who is trying to be better while not stopping and letting life pass you by while you wait for your ideals to perfectly materialize.

  7. You're the best, Kimber. I've wondered the same things about the two opposing sides of myself. Love your posts!


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