Sunday, June 2, 2013

Not just Duffy's Mom

I call my Blog "Duffy Barkley's Mom" because I created the character of a young boy with cerebral palsy and an allergy to being told "no." He stars in two of my novels. But there are two wonderful young men who are the only people in the world who get to call me "mom" and neither is named Duffy.

I wanted to be a Mom for my whole life, but it took a long time to happen and yet happened unexpectedly fast.  For 10 years i couldn't get pregnant and then I was trying to adopt older children, or handicapped or a sibling group, when suddenly i found out i could bring home a newborn and his birth Mom was 2 weeks overdue so in 3 days I suddenly had a baby, and then found out shortly after that I was pregnant and then there were 2. 2 boys in 1 year.

I needed advice, and fast.  The best advice I ever got was, "When they are cranky, put them in water." It worked for cranky moms too.  Water or anything messy, anything that meant washing in water would be required later.

 I think I got pretty good at being a mom.  I think that because I had so much fun at it, and also because both of my babies became young men who make the world a better place by being in it.  Kind, creative, loving, hard working and wonderful, but I could be biased.

'Hmmm. No I'm not.  I asked an objective opinion from their dad and he agrees.

 Anyway, the problem with developing the skills to be a good Mom, is that those skills are not really needed for as long as it takes to develop them.  By the time you learn to ignore the minor details and focus on the fun and creativity.  By the time you know a thousand kids songs and can mix playdough and finger paint from common kitchen ingredients, by the time you can smile and get giggles while cleaning up a baby with the flu.  They are not babies.
 Then you find yourself in the grocery store, buying groceries for two middle aged empty nesters, next  to an awkward young father trying to juggle two kids and the debit machine, and you know if you offer to help, he will wonder what kind of weird stalker creep is trying to get close to his babies. Suddenly you know all the skills you have built up in a lifetime, are not wanted anywhere.  And it shakes you to the core.
 Then you get lucky, because life keeps changing and moving on, and there will be other laughing toddlers and exhausted parents, who say yes to Grandma when she wants to have the kid for the weekend
 and once again I got to soap the floor with bubbles and mop it by skating on wet towels. I got to see messy face break into giggles as I sang about baby whales and little white ducks.  So Sorry Duffy, but you have to share, because the best job I ever had, was being A & E's Mom.

1 comment:

  1. Awww!

    With my baby graduating from 8th grade this week, it's coming home to me that we aren't so far from this--though family precedent puts the grands a long way off!