For the past couple of weeks (actually since I started blogging as I'd never really heard the term before) I have heard a lot about Mommy bloggers. Actually four of my fellow Chicagonow bloggers are nominated for best Mommy blogs. They are awesome and so are their blogs. Funny though, for some reason I've never been referred to as one despite the fact that I am a mother of two and I am a blogger. I don't always write about my kids; as a matter of fact I write about them very rarely. I haven't thought of sharing the trials and tribulations of being the mother of kids that are 24 and 22. Both girls. Oh wait, both women. Hard to wrap my brain around that. I have saved the trials for the mothers of young children and babies.
Many times I read the "Mommy" blogs and I have to admit, I snicker. Yes, I do. Not because I undermine what makes them crazy with their young children, because mine were that age once too. No, I snicker because I know what's in store. For every diaper they change, for every nose they wipe or tantrum they try to divert there are much more fun things to come. You think they're pulling their hair out now?
When my girls were under the age of five I always felt (even though I was working and they were with a sitter, thankfully not one that would stab them) that I had complete control of their little selves. They weren't going to go anywhere without me. Thy weren't going to grab the car keys and drive off. They were always with me when I was home and I liked it that way. I had CONTROL.
Then suddenly they started to get older. Of course this meant I was too and during the years there were always incidents where I aged a bit more rapidly than I would have chosen. I wasn't just worried about diapers and the alphabet and nap time and all the other things that you worry about when they're little.
I worried about school and grades. I worried about boys and friends and if they would be well liked or bullied. Thankfully unlike their mother they were not bullied; they had lots of friends but that of course had it's share of issues. Sleepovers at friends houses and whether to allow it. (No, if you haven't met the parents). Competitive friends and their parents that want to shoot your kids down because yours made cheerleading and theirs didn't. Because your daughter was class President and theirs wasn't. There were times I felt as though I was dealing with the Texas Cheerleading mom that hired a hitman to kill a kid that made that squad. True story.
I worried because they weren't always with me like they were before. I watched anxiously for them to get off the school bus. Then for them to pull into the driveway when they had a car. Oh, and yes the first time your child takes the car out on their own? Get the wine and Xanax out my friends, this is a big one.
Then of course as they are girls there are periods. Full blown menstrual psychosis times three if we all cycled at the same time. Mood swings, pimples, bloating and complaining that their size 0 tummies aren't as flat as they usually are. This as I tipped the scales in numbers that exceeded my highest pregnancy weight.
After the periods come the sex talks. Hilarious as they were when they happened, I somehow felt I was tainting my sweet little girls with this knowledge. I wanted to keep them pure forever.
There were and are relationships that will put you on a roller coaster right along with them. They date a new boy that you love and then they break up. You feel like you've also had the break up. You want to be sweet to the boys and welcoming. And then BAM, they're onto the next. When they have a bad break up, there is nothing worse. Just like any mother feels - they hurt, I hurt. I've lost more sleep over their break ups than they have.
Then it's off to college after the high school years of dating, dances, clothes, cars, and the constant worry that your kids are okay when they're not with you. That they're not being rufied by some guy who wants a piece of my beautiful daughter's rear end. That they're not out driving while drinking; or someone else who has been drinking is on the same road. That I've taught them as best I can not to get pregnant. That they would have the scores to get into the college that they are away at. That we'd have the money to pay for it. That they get along with their roommates. That they don't get saddled with Single White Female.
There were the times of struggles for who had control. The times they would stomp out of the room pissed off that I said no (rare occasion, my bad). The times that they wanted so badly to break free; to gain independence as I tried to come to grips with their getting older. And now they are.
In the past year I've watched my youngest graduate college, move back home and then move out. I have both of my girls living together in an apartment downtown. There is some comfort in that but I still worry all the time. They are on their own when they leave at night and hop in a cab to go to a club or better yet, hop in one at 3AM after a few cocktails. I'm not there to tell them it's a bad idea to do certain things that I did when I was their age. That I truly am the voice of experience.
There are days I would take changing a diaper or a 2 year old's temper tantrum any day of the week as long as they were with me. I worried a lot less.
So yes, I am a "Mommy blogger". And an opinion blogger. And a reality show blogger. And a myriad of other types of blogger. I won't always be writing about my kids but just want to give my readers, those that take the time to share my rantings, a little insight into who I am. And to those "Mommy bloggers" with the little kids:
Be afraid. Be very afraid.
(Pic at beginning of blog circa 1991. This is now. I'm a very lucky Mommy)