the smell of my desperation has become a stench

Christmas mascot

Marlo came home from school last Friday so excited to give me the ornament she had made for me in Kindergarten, this felt penguin with googly eyes. I rejoiced and clapped my hands and exclaimed, “For me?!” And before handing it over she held up her palm as an indicator that I should calm the hell down.

“You have to be careful,” she warned.

“I will be very careful,” I assured her as I picked it up by the ribbon on its head.

“Mom,” she continued as if I didn’t fully grasp it. “It’s held together with nothing but a hot glue gun. Do you know what that is?”

I stood there with the blankest, most “do you even know what religion I grew up in?” look on my face. Before I could answer she explained, “That thing could just fall apart!”

Do I know what a hot glue gun is. First, I’m not even going to dignify that question. Second, it’s not held together by a hot glue gun. It’s held together by the glue from the gun. But I did not point that out and instead hung my penguin at her height on the tree next to the Pac-Man ornament I made for my mom in 1st grade.

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Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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