Sisters with Flair

Monday, September 13, 2010

mom's off duty

(photo from flickr: here)
I would like to formally apologize to all the people I may have judged BEFORE I had children. The times I thought "how hard is it to comb your kids hair before you leave the house?" Or "Really? You thought it was ok to have your kid come to the mall in a Halloween Costume in August?" Or the times I may have given a slightly horrified look as your child lay on the floor of William Sonoma screaming bloody murder and kicking everyone who tried to walk over her/him. Maybe, even the times where I uttered something under my breath as you talked baby talk to your child and asked permission from your child "can daddy have a tasty of your lollipop?" Really dude? You know if you talk like an idiot- your kid turns out to be an idiot. Not that I would say that or anything! (Mom- do any of these stories vaguely remind you of your sweet grandchildren?) To all those children I thought were homeless as they shopped with their moms at Walmart. I'm sorry. Your mom's weren't lazy. (Well, some were) They were just off duty for a minute. You see off duty is a fantastic coping mechanism for the mom's to let go of all our guilt for NOT pinning you down and doing an elaborate hairstyle. Off duty is our way of winning some and losing some. I used to think it was highly rude that my mom would yell "Off duty!" thru a closed bathroom door. But now I realize it's a mom's way of saying....... "I can't be nice anymore. I have been nice for 15 hours now, if I were any nicer I'd be Mother Teresa!" I remember talking to a friend who told me that she was going to have a baby when every room in her house was decorated perfectly and she had gone to two different countries and she had a year of savings in the bank. I remember laughing outloud. After her look of horror, I realized she was NOT kidding. (Strangely, she never wanted to hang out after that......) But the thing is- motherhood is payback. Even if you were an amazingly adorable and cooperative child, hint hint, you're gonna get a dose of motherhood. You are sentenced to the next 18 years of showering with barbies and matchbox cars and bathroom breaks with fingers under the doors and conversations thru the closed door because they can't wait 30 seconds. (Oh yeah, 30 seconds is all you get honey!) But through it all, I can't imagine my life any better than when my kids hug me and (naively) tell me that I'm the best mom ever! Oh how it's been worth every dirty diaper, 3 am feeding, 2am emergency room visit, embarrassing tantrum in public to hear those words! Even now, as I type this, my girls who have been in bed for 1.5 hours are still having a conversation about their wardrobes from their SEPARATE bedrooms. To all those moms I judged, I'm sorry. I no longer judge you. I AM YOU! And every night at 8pm, just to stay a little sane, I go off duty. And when I wake up in the morning......... I'm Mother Teresa again. :)


  1. Andrea - you slay me. I loved it and give you permission to start writing a book and add that to your enviable list of talents. Several years ago, I was in front of my computer...the house was quiet....the joy of the empty nest and I was thinking how I would be able to do whatever I wanted for as long as I wanted without interruption...and then I felt for a moment the "sweet pain" of never having a small own child...climb up in my lap to seek a moment of love from me. It was a tender moment...and I felt intense gratitude for knowing what that felt like! Motherhood is truly the most enobling career there is!