Tonight I was getting out of the car after dinner and she was telling me about the story she always tells her friends about me:
"Christa used to want a daisy tattoo around her belly button," her story goes. "And I told her if she ever got pregnant it would turn into a SUNFLOWER!"
This. Never. Happened.
I'm not saying that in the way someone might see their seventh grade class picture and say: "A sheriff-badge sized broach, a checkered vest from The Closet and a side ponytail? I can't believe ... I never wore that!" That happened. It's not good, but even without the evidence of the class photo I would admit it happened. This daisy story, though, did not.
How I Know This Story Isn't True:
1. I know this is going to make me sound stupid, but until about 2 years ago, I wouldn't have known the difference between a daisy and a daffodil. I've never been interested enough in flowers to know what was what. If I were to describe a ring of flowers, I'd never use the name of an actual type of flower because visually it would mean nothing to me.
2. I've gone 35 years without ever considering getting a tattoo. There were a lot of things I considered piercing, but tattoos have never been my jam. I would never even joke about it. In fact, my official stand on it has always been, "I can't get a tattoo because I've never liked any thing for more than two years except the Beastie Boys." (Last year I started thinking maybe I wouldn't mind getting a tattoo. But not around my belly button and not daisies. Also: I've gone on to like Chuck for almost six years).
3. I would never, ever, EVER get a tattoo on my stomach. Even though I've always known I wouldn't get a tattoo, I especially knew that if I did it wouldn't be around my belly button. That is actually among the Top Five places I wouldn't put a tattoo.
4. This isn't even my mom's kind of joke. She doesn't spike the ball. When it comes to comedy, she's more of a setter than a spiker.
"You just don't remember saying it," my mom said, slamming the car door. "Or maybe you were trying to get a rise out of me."
"That's not even something I would threaten. It's just nothing that was even on my radar at all at ALL," I said. "It's the opposite of something I would do. I would make a stranger get a circle of daisies tattoo removed from their stomach before I would get a circle of daisies tattoo on my own."
I was getting peeved. Her people -- friends, family, coworkers -- hearing this story. And they would all think of me as this idiot with the bad taste to consider getting a permanent daisy wreath around my navel.*
"IT NEVER HAPPENED!" I said.
"It was a long time ago," she said.
Then my dad stepped in and totally fixed it.
"Well, whatever. You've made up a lot of stories about your mom over the years," he said.
And that? That totally made sense.
"Oh. Yeah. Right," I said. "Why didn't you just say so?"
She just blended and borrowed to make a story that she might even believe is true. It is, at least, true to the version of the character of me she has in her head. So, whatever. (But it's still not true).
* I'm not against daisy tattoos around belly buttons as a rule. I am against daisy tattoos around my belly button.