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Defining Mom Moments

March 31, 2015

Sometimes I don’t feel like a mom. You know, like a quintessential “mom”. Close your eyes for a moment and what is the first thing that pops into your head when you hear the word “mom”? I can’t exactly pinpoint my image, but I can tell you right now that it isn’t an image of myself. I picture a mush mash of mini vans, high-waisted light washed jeans, neat stacks of laundry, the smell of meatloaf, and the sound of Raffi streaming (or screaming) from the car radio. Is that me? I don’t think so. I mean, do I even look like a mom? Sometimes I wonder if random people I don’t know, like the person scanning my groceries, can tell if I am a mom? Well, despite the 10 jars of babyfood and 4 boxes of mac and cheese making their way down the moving belt- hey, maybe I’m doing a cleanse and have a husband with cheap taste? They totally don’t think I look like a mom. They would be shocked if I told them I had 3 kids, right?

It’s as if becoming a mom signifies a sense of maturity (a look and a sense of being) that I don’t feel I have just yet. I still laugh at fart jokes and wear ripped jeans. I pop squirts of whipped cream in my mouth if I am so lucky to have it in the fridge, and would buy pop tarts if high fructose syrup wasn’t taboo. I follow fashion bloggers on instagram and listen to Taylor Swift. I still like Sour Patch Kids for crying out loud. And none of these “things” fit in to the image I have of a mother. But I am one. I am a mother three times. And there have been significant moments along the way that serve as reality check points. They scream, Oh Yes. You right there. You are an M.O.M.

I remember the first one vividly. Sitting in the waiting room of the pediatrician’s office when my first son was three days old. The nurse walked in with her clipboard, glanced over the rims of her glasses and nonchalantly called, “Jack.” I sat there unphased for a few moments. Jack is not me. I was waiting to hear my name, right. Omigodno!!!!! Jack, that is me! That is my son! This kid right here that I just gave birth to. Wow. I am a mom. And this is my kid. “Yes!” I perked up. “That is me. I mean, it’s him. I mean… That’s us.” Somehow hearing his name out loud from the voice of a stranger, was the first time it hit me. I have a kid. I am a mom.

And between the sour patch kids and teeny bopper music, there have been several other defining mom moments along the way. There are the obvious ones like midnight awakenings, breastfeeding, and cutting food into teeny tiny little pieces so the original substance is hardly recognizeable. And there was one or maybe two times that I did, in fact, make a meatloaf. These are the things that have become my new normal, but sometimes I stop and pinch myself, “Am I really a mom?”

Ok, you’ve got me. My car is a dead giveaway. It’s not a minivan, but it’s mom-ish. And one glance in the rearview mirror and my car has “mom” written all over it. A car that seats 8, but only room for say, oh maybe 2 adults. Unless you are under 60lbs and can squeeze into a goldfish encrusted carseat, you can’t ride with me.

mom moments

Yep. I am a mom.

And there is nothing like a parent-teacher conference that makes you feel like a mom. A meeting with a teacher about one common thing. Your kid. His potential. His problems. His future. It’s a daunting 15 minutes, but when you think about it, you really just care that he is trying and he is happy.

Wow. I am totally a mom.

Then there are the things that fly out of my mouth. Like the time I asked a grown man, my friend’s husband, if he had to go to the bathroom before departing for a long drive home. “Um, I think I’m good but (insert quizzical look), thanks for asking??” Really. Did I just go there? Yes. Yes I did.

Who asks that but a mom?

Trying to tell someone else, like a babysitter, how to take care of your own kids is another one of these defining moments. You know, when you are  contemplating exactly how much information they need to survive the next two hours. Is less more? Is more more? Are they even listening? Omg I should have written it down. But if they are reading then they aren’t watching my kid. What if he chokes one a grape that I told her her feed him but forgot to tell her to cut when she is reading my note? Did I tell her to cut the grapes? I can’t remember. I better text her. I hope she gets the text, but if she writes back right away does that mean she is texting her friends and not watching my kids. Maybe I should just swing back in. But if I swing back in my kid might get upset and she might think I’m spying and she will probably never come back.

Yeah. Only a mother…….

I totally am one.

But the moments that make me feel most like a mom is when I watch my boys just do their thing and interact with one another. My oldest, the funny guy who had Siri change my name Marcus Mariota on my phone. He is becoming a “real person” who I can have real conversations with. He has budding interests or should I say interest (singular) in sports, he knows the way to his mama’s heart…. and whether it’s in the name of a new baseball glove or a bowl of ice cream… I don’t care. I am completely smitten.

Then there is the middle guy who asks, “Mom was this picture when I was a baby or a big boy?” That statement says it all – the fact that he deems himself a big boy and can do big boy things like stay up til (gasp) 7:45, sneak sips of root beer when his baby brother isn’t around, and sleeps on the TOP bunk – he is a big boy in all his glory.

And the baby: squishy, flirty, and mostly crazy. The one who emulates everything his brothers do. Yes, he wears shorts in the winter and chews gum. No really, he legit chews gum. But the coolest part is watching his older brothers get excited about him growing up – “MOM! He said cheese stick!!! He said CHEESE STICK!! Did you hear that? Oh my God! Yay, CHEESESTICK!! Good job little buddy!”

When things like that make your heart skip a beat, you know you are a mom.

I am a mom. I made these little beings.

Awe-some. Like I am totally in awe. I made them. They are freaking awesome. And they are mine.

… oh, I wrote this post standing up, hovered over the kitchen counter while my kids beat the crap out of each other in the next room….So maybe I don’t fit my own image of a mom, but if that is not “mom” enough for you, then I don’t know what is.

 

  • Julia
    March 31, 2015 at 9:37 pm

    Love this! I feel that way all the time, especially when I’m out without Jackson and I wonder if people think I am a Mom. And there is no shame in loving some Taylor Swift.

  • Kristen
    April 10, 2015 at 8:13 am

    Awww…I first felt like a mom when my baby was in the NICU – my heart ached to hold her. I knew life would never be the same. A lovely piece…

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