Friday, March 12, 2010

The Rodney Dangerfield of Soccer Moms

About a thousand years ago, or so it seems to me, I found out that I was pregnant with my first child, and I was the happiest woman on Earth. I went to the doctor's office in my steel blue Liz Claiborne pantsuit, matching shoes and purse, impeccable makeup and hair, and drove there in my sporty black two-door coupe with a rear wing spoiler. I held the square positive pregnancy test administered at the doctor's office, staring at the little plus sign, thrilled beyond words. I bought my husband the book "The Expectant Father", wrapped it up and gave it to him to let him know that we were expecting our very own bundle of joy. We were over the moon. I made all the rookie Mom mistakes (registering at Target for 32 onesies in a newborn size . . . hello???). I ordered car seats, crib mattresses, and searched for a diaper bag that would be just right. Ignorance was truly bliss.

Nowadays, I walk the kids out to the bus stop in sweatpants and a t-shirt with my glasses on and not a stitch of makeup on my over-40 face. I step on Legos. I let my kids pack the groceries at the grocery store and end up with squished loaves of bread. I drive kids to dance, violin lessons, sleepovers, playdates, and baseball. I taught Sunday School, I chaperone class field trips, I volunteer at school, meet my kids for lunch sometimes, take my kids to movie matinees, and I let them play those machines with the metal claw to try and win even more stuffed animals. In the years that I've been a mother, I've been peed on, pooped on, puked on, bled on and cried on. I am the "fixer", the "maker", the "helper" and the "giver".

I am also the "enforcer" at times. Like a couple of weeks ago at the bus stop when my kids started fighting about who would be first in line for the bus. It was my daughter's turn, but she got to go first the day before when my son was home sick from school. So, my son figured he was due to be first. Push came to shove (literally), and my son pushed his sister into the street with a car coming half a block away. I grabbed his arm and yanked him off his sister, got my daughter picked up and dusted off, and then got both of them on the bus. I thought nothing of this the rest of the day. As far as our days go, this was pretty much par for the course.

After school, I was unpacking backpacks and getting homework together. The school nurse wrote a note that my son had gone to see her for a "bruised arm given to him by his mother." I called my children to the table for homework and asked about the visit to the nurse. My son had gone to the nurse, gotten an ice pack, and was sent to the guidance counselor for further questioning about his mother's actions that morning. The guidance counselor then called my daughter out of her classroom to question her about that morning. So, I asked my daughter if she explained how she had been pushed into the street and I grabbed her brother's arm in order to get him off of her. She hadn't. She simply confirmed for the guidance counselor that I had yanked her brother's arm. The three of us sat at the table looking at each other. My daughter asked if I could go to jail. "Probably," I said, "But it's okay, someone will cook for me and clean up after me there." Nothing ever came of it. Child Protection Services must have bigger cases to look into. (BTW, it turns out his arm was sore from an altercation on the playground the day before. Of course, he didn't tell anyone at school that, and he didn't tell me until days later.)

Then, last night, I was cleaning out my son's backpack. He had done a "Beach Day Squiggle" for art class. Out of his squiggle, he made a giant snail. Underneath the snail picture, he drew a lobster, two people in a boat, clouds and an airplane overhead, and he wrote, "I allwese wanted to go to Hawiey but my Mom never let me go. The end."

I'll accept the blame for yanking him off his sister. But I will be damned if I take the blame for my seven-year-old not going to Hawaii. There is going to be a family meeting over this. That child was 8 pounds, 10 ounces at birth. I nursed him for 15 months. And THIS is the kind of BS that I get??? Those kids are going to have to come up with something better than tissue paper flowers and Hallmark cards for Mother's Day this year.

I get no respect around here. I feel a "Mom Strike" coming on.


  1. OMG! This was so funny!! But in all seriousness, you do deserve something really, really nice.

  2. It's been a "pull your hair out" morning here at work and I needed a good chuckle -- thanks, daughter!

    Mother Heller