Contraband (June 8, 2009)

I am in uncharted terrority here. I am not used to hiding things, as you may have noticed. My life is pretty much an open book for anyone interested in reading. From age 16 on, I got out of the habit of covering anything from my own parents. Let them judge if they wanted. I had to find my own way, make my own mistakes, and I wasn’t ashamed if my personal growth entailed the occasional fall on my face. That has pretty much been my life philosophy ever since.

As I sit here in the middle of my living room floor surrounded by mine and Eddie’s “marital aids,” wine bottles, the feather penis boa from my bachelorette party in 2007, and anything that could conceivably be construed as drug paraphenalia, I find myself wondering when this happened. When did I become the girl who wanted to make such a good impression on her in-laws, that I am boxing up little pieces of me, even if they are the darker pieces, in order to shove them into storage, however temporarily? Of course as I review my collection assembled on the floor, I am thinking I might be closer to depraved Amy Winehouse territory than I previously allowed myself to believe. I realize there is a fine line between respectfully keeping certain things out of the in-laws line of vision, and self-censorship, and I feel for now I am on the right side of that line. But I have to guard against my own tendency to put forward my most “acceptable” social self in a given situation. Often, I edit myself into an oblivion, with the result that I feel trapped and angry. That’s kind of what happened when Eddie and I got married in India in December of ’07. This will be an especially difficult course to navigate when I am essentially, fending for myself mano y mano with Eddie’s folks for the next 30 days. My husband will ride into town every Thursday night to lend me a hand, but for the most part, it’s me, Mummy and Papa 24/7.

I have a lot more to say on this topic, but I have to go and eat all the Lean Cuisines that contain beef out of my freezer (in-laws do not condone the consumption of red meat either). Anyone else ever been in this situation? Advice?

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