I Am A Brat

I hate living in California.

I’m sorry Governor Jerry Brown. Yours’ is a perfectly lovely state in which many, many people enjoy living – and, in fact, flock to for retirement.  I’m sorry Newcomers friends. Nothing personal….  I’m sorry Long Beach family.  I love seeing you but I don’t love living in your state. I’m sorry dear husband Peter who works very hard at a job that just happens to be in effing California.

California, I’m sorry.  Really, it’s not you it’s me.

I always thought we would put down roots and raise our family in one place.  In my plan we would have stayed put in that house, even as empty nesters, until we were too old and too feeble to make it up the stairs.  Funny how real life doesn’t match up with the fairy tale you imagine in your mind.

When I learned that Peter was approached about a job in San Diego I WAS NOT HAPPY.  Although he had been miserable at his previous job for some time I wanted him to stick with it rather than force me to relocate to a land far, far away.  Seriously!  How dare he pursue a great opportunity with a growing company.  How dare he make me relocate to a condo with a view of the Pacific Ocean.

ocean view

Recapping: I did not want to move to effing California.

Also:  I am a brat.

San Diego – the most beautiful city in the U.S.  San Diego – the place with perfect weather.  Just ask any San Diegan, they will tell you how perfect the place is.  Infinity minus one people would trade places with me in a minute.  So what’s the matter with me? Why can’t I shake this negativity?  And why can’t I stop complaining?

The following are my reasons for hating life in California:

1. It is not Chicago.  When people ask me how I could stand living in Chicago with the terrible weather (you see, San Diegans are OBSESSED with weather) I say that no one lives in Chicago because of the weather, they live there in spite of the weather because it has so many, many other fabulous qualities.

2.  California is far, far away from almost all of my family and friends.  I miss them terribly.

3.  I am sun averse.  I will not be learning to surf or paddle board or hang out at the beach. Our family has had a long and storied relationship with skin cancer.  Last week I was diagnosed with a wee bit of skin cancer on the same day my lab results came back showing I suffer from low vitamin D.  Well now that’s a pickle.  I’m damned if I sun and damned if I don’t.

Don’t you feel sorry for me?  Isn’t this a gut-wrenching nightmare of an existence?

Or just a pity party, table for one.

pity party

As part of Liv Lane’s e-course, How To Build a Blog You Truly Love, we were assigned to write a brave post – something that we wouldn’t normally share, something that forced us to step out of our comfort zone.  That’s what got me thinking about my brattiness.

I’m thankful that Liv challenged us to do this.  It has made me take a good look at my inner Veruca Salt (the character from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, not the alternative rock band).  Most people think of me as nice and sweet.  The truth is, underneath it all I can really be a bitch.  And in this case an ungrateful, whiney, bratty bitch.

I’ve wasted a lot of negative energy in the three years we have lived here.  Spent a lot of time wallowing in unhappiness rather than appreciating my surroundings.  The truly ridiculous part is that this California adventure WILL come to an end and we WILL move back to our beloved Chicago.  In the meantime, I go back for frequent visits.  I have absolutely nothing to complain about.

Resolved: I will try really, really hard to enjoy life in California.  I will try really, really hard to stop complaining especially to my dear husband who just wants to work hard and provide us with a good and happy life.  And I WILL be grateful for the gifts in my life – every day.

If I find myself slipping back into my bratty self, I will watch this video and see what happens to girls like me and Veruca.  It will remind me to turn my attitude around, lest I end up down the chute with the rotten eggs.


© 2013 Mocadeaux

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  1. Confession: I am a brat too. Enlightening post. 🙂

  2. Oh my gosh, Mo, this post had me laughing from start to finish! You see, I just moved to California from New York City a few months ago. We’ll have to introduce our inner Verucas to each other so they can have a nice, cathartic chat.

    Love this post. Love you.

    Also, not to over-focus on this, but much empowered wellness to you as you deal with the carcinoma, not a super-un-scary thing, I imagine.

    Also as you deal with the vitamin D conundrum. (That little catch 22 cracked me up, too.)

    Ps. I can see how that view of the ocean can be a hardship. Aw.

  3. Oh Mo, I just love this. You had me at Roald Dahl.

    Yes- you are a brat – Love, love, love San Diego. Have never been to Chicago so can’t comment on my affection for it. Thank you for inspiring me to pay it a visit.

    May your resolve to enjoy SD life bring you much joy.

    Looking forward to your subsequent “Living and Loving SD” posts…


    • Kelly, when you go to Chicago let me know. I’ll give you lots of suggestions for your trip! And I love your idea about subsequent “Living and Loving SD” posts. What better way to keep my resolution than to embrace it in my blog! You are brilliant!

  4. I think we’re all brats in our own way! (And if you don’t admit it, you’re lying… Ha!) “Funny how real life doesn’t match up with the fairy tale you imagine in your mind.”… so so true!

  5. Oh my gosh I love this post. I actually think it is quite healthy to channel our inner bitch once and a while (though I do like calling her our inner Veruca Salt – so made me laugh!!). I can sympathize with you as a born-and-raised midwesterner who went to college in California (LA) and experienced major culture shock!! Great post, and enjoy the weather (LOL)!

  6. Mo, Mo, Mo! Come home for a visit soon!

    With that said, YOU ARE NOT A BRAT! You are a very good sport who misses home!

    I do love your post and have been meaning to ask you about your blogging class! Sounds like it is going well. Have a good summer, stay out of the sun and hope to see you in the hood soon.


  7. Dear inner Veruca Salt, Within sentences, I thought you might be exaggerating the not loving Cali thing UNTIL you said you could be in Chicago. And then, my inner VS started yelling I want it now , I want it now. I LOVE this post. The humor, being able to laugh –wait, really, I’m so sorry you’re living in Cali on that gorgeous Pacific beach. Mo, I’m coming back for more doozy doses only the way a brat can dish it. Wonderful post. Warm wishes xo, Susan okay, okay, so I’m a brat sometimes, too.

  8. Thanks so much for your warm and encouraging comments. I really hadn’t planned for this to be a funny post but as I was writing I realized just how ludicrous my “challenge” was. Just had to laugh at myself! But yes, Chicago RULES!!!

    Sending hugs to you!

  9. I think it is impossible for us to be instantly happy where we are when we leave behind so much. We need this “a-ha” kind of moment to shake ourselves free of our “brat” self and realize that we are not living if we are constantly yearning. Your “voice” is so clear.

  10. Mo– this was wonderful! I love your writing voice, you sassy thing! You found a way to get your complaining out while making us readers love you… and people so often hold all that complaining inside. I live in Minnesota, so I get the part about living in Chicago in spite of the weather. The Midwest has a lot going for it (but shhh, don’t tell the Coasters about it!).

    Good job,


  11. I am a brat too! I hate Houston, TX. But I am very well provided for (oil and gas industry will do that). I try to remember a move might not make me any happier. My husband’s favorite saying is, “Wherever you go, there you are.” So I guess your resolution is the best one. I’m gonna have to follow your lead! 🙂

  12. Humor is a coping mechanism, right?

  13. To the previous comment: Hey Lanie, I am from Houston originally, and I feel your pain! 😉
    If my hubby came home tomorrow and tried to move us, even to beautiful California, I would be devastated. Sounds like you are making the best of it, though! :)-Ashley

  14. If my hubby came tomorrow and tried to relocate us, even to beautiful California, I would be devastated.-Ashley

  15. Wonderful post! Love your humor and wish you great success in taming your inner Veruca Salt. (I think we all have one.)

  16. Wonderful post! Love your humor and wish you great success in taming your inner Veruca Salt. (I think we all have one.)

  17. Loving the VS reference and the funny e-card pic! I’d say you’re not alone; I moved to the east coast (Newport, RI…freaking luxury sailboats, mansions, fine dining galore) and there are days all I long for is my hometown, 1.5 hrs. away from my FAVORITE city in the US–CHICAGO!! Oh, I didn’t mention that my hometown is South Bend, IN…I mean, who would prefer there over Newport?? THIS GIRL!!
    Don’t be too hard on yourself, it’s difficult to leave the place you love. Been there, done that. 😉

  18. So glad to have a kindred spirit!
    Good old South Bend. I spent four wonderful years there but I’m sure that people don’t understand why you’d choose South Bend over Newport. I get it…home is home.
    Thanks for the kind comment – and for making me laugh!

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