I’m going to say some things to you and the one thing I need from you for the next few minutes is for you to not say a goddamn word until I’m finished. If I hear one solitary murmur from you before I’m done talking I am hanging up immediately. Do you think you can do that for me? Good.
I need you to understand some things.
I am twenty-seven years old.
I live two thousand miles away from you across an international border.
I am almost finished with the highest certification my field has to offer, an achievement so prestigious that I literally get to claim a title afterward.
I have lived with an amazing woman who is everything I need and more for so long that the Canadian government requires us to file our taxes jointly.
I have cut off contact with dozens of people whose sole crime was being people you also know and scuttled a blog that was building an impressive reputation and readership, for the sole purpose of making sure that no one ever says anything to you about me and I never again have to hear you shrieking over the phone about how this or that part of me that has suddenly become news is soiling the family’s reputation.
The only way you could possibly be more insulated from any further embarrassment my miscellaneous weirdness might cause you is if you started pretending I was dead and I started letting you.
My hair and fingernails do not require your approval.
And if you’re scared now of losing me once I don’t need your money anymore, just imagine how scared you’ll be when I decide that not having your approval isn’t going to hurt anymore.