Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Some have gone and some remain.

So we went back to the church that we tried out last week and I enjoyed it again. The pastor and his wife are about the same age as Jason and I. And I like the pastor, because I think he tells it like it is. I was a credit counselor for a non-profit organization for years and years and I had to be really nice even when people treated me badly and were abusive and crappy, so I’m pretty much over the whole sugarcoating thing. Call a spade a spade or whatever.

The pastor and his wife have two children, a boy and a girl, just like us. The difference is, their boy and girl are both under four years old.

And? I noticed? That everyone who has children the same age as our children? Much older than we are.

I’m used to that, in a lot of ways. I get that a lot of people don’t have babies when they are twenty-two and that’s cool. Frankly, I probably shouldn’t have had babies when I was twenty-two either if we want to base the “should have babies” factor on things like financial preparedness and emotional and mental stability. I’m so, so glad I had them because seriously I think that I had like a five minute window in 1997 which allowed me to get pregnant and I’m fairly certain that if it didn’t happen right at that exact moment I would have never, ever had any children at all, much less got to experience the joy that is The Boy and The Girl. I’m not big on regret as a general rule and I would never, ever, EVER regret having my children, even though I was really young and, admittedly, quite stupid.

I’m finding it hard, however, to fit in.

Because the thing I have learned is that, for whatever reason, people absolutely do not relate to me as a mother.

I really, honestly do not understand this.

If you know me and I mean, actually really know me, you know that there is nothing on this planet that is more important to me than the Boy and the Girl. Sometimes I’m amazed at what an awesome life I have and I’m really, really freaking grateful for everything I have that is good, but frankly, it could all go to Hell and I’d still be okay as long as I had them. They are the reason I work so hard to have what I have. They are the reason that I keep trying…that I will never stop trying.

Those kids? Make me who I am.

So why is it so hard for people to relate to me as a mother?

I mean, I understand why people don’t relate to me as a Supermodel or whatever. I get why it’s hard for people to recognize the fact that, um, yeah. I’m actually kind of really smart and despite my dubious use of the words too and to, I really do get a lot of things and know how to express them pretty well. I know I talk like I’m from the South and people automatically deduct IQ points when I speak and before they really get to know me.

I get all that.

But I am a mother. I have something to offer.

No, I don’t remember when you are supposed to get an ultrasound. I don’t know when babies get their first teeth in or take their first steps. I would be hard pressed to tell you what time my children were actually born. These things I don’t keep right in the forefront of my mind. I admit that.

But I know how to be a mother.

I know how to talk a crying child down from a meltdown. I know how it feels to have nothing else in this world but a little baby and that little baby hates you and wants you dead and has just freaking puked all over you. I know how it feels to be so proud of your little child that your heart feels like it’s about to burst out of your chest. I know how it feels to watch your child cry and feel your own heart break and wish there was something you could do to fix it.

I know all that.

What I don’t know is where I fit in. Where I belong. Why people think I have nothing to offer. Why there has to be such a huge, gaping divide between moms. Between women, who should be supportive of one another, and instead end up putting each other in categories and groups and saying, “She can’t fit with me”. I do it to… I’m guilty as all of the rest of them.

I may not be what you think of when you think of a Supermom. I know this.

But I am a mom.

I’ve lived through it. I have stories.



And maybe, just maybe, I could help.


Maybe I really do have something to offer this world other than the copious use of the word douchebag.

21 comments:

Scarbrough Family said...

I so understand. I too am from the south. I mentioned that huh. Bad habit, sorry.
I live where the girls in my age bracket, 30ish, have more kids and older kids. They don't relate to waiting to have a family and a marriage. I didn't do it by choice, just happened. Hang in there and you can vent to me...

CPA Mom said...

You definitely help me as a mom. I lean on you a lot for advice because you've been there! And I probably don't thank you enough...so THANK YOU!

DC's Mom said...

I totally relate to you and your situation. I'm a single mother, I had my son at 16, he's almost 12. My sons friends parents are older than me and it seems like none of them value what I have to say.

judy in ky said...

I think a lot of women feel the way you do. I have always had a hard time fitting in because I have no children. We live on a street where everything is about the kids and the schools. I like that kind of atmosphere because it is wholesome, but no one ever has much to say to me. In my experience, women in general don't relate well to those who have a different lifetstyle from them. There is a lot of judging going on.

Angie said...

Yeah. . .and then there's those of us with teenagers AND preschoolers. Talk about not fitting in. . .

I think every mom goes through this because we, as women, very often are brutal to each other. I mean. . .HELLO?!?!? blog land is where I have read some of the most vicious things said to, and about other women.

I think every mom has something to bring to the table, besides a chicken casserole. :) You will find your place and your voice -- because you've done so well finding it here.

Love ya, Chick!

Mikey said...

I'm a mom and I relate to you! I think you're doing just fine. Funny you mentioned not knowing what time they were born. I was JUST thinking that this morning, I have no idea what time my daughter was born. But I can tell you what time I was born, since my own mother keeps reminding me 35 yrs later...
I wondered if I was a bad mom for not knowing what time my child was born. Then I let it go and said to myself "Nah, no biggie"
I try to not judge and to just relate to all kinds of moms. There's lots to learn from everyone.
I also have taught my child that should she get lost/separated from me, go to a mommy. Not a cop, a MOMMY. Cause I know that other moms will do the right thing. We're all in it together now.
But I do relate to you as a mom. And I love your copious use of the word douchebag :)

mean stepmom said...

I can totally relate to this post. Most people with kids the same age as mine are pushing 50. Hubby and I don't fit in, but it's okay. We make our own clique. :)

AmyBow said...

but i especially love it when you use the word douchbag...

Maggie said...

I have the answer. At least, from my perspective. I have two very young children, and you parents with older kiddos are way more experienced than I am. I feel like when I talk about poop or teething or biting or whatnot, that you'd just be like "been there done that, but my kid kicks ass in debate" or something. I know that you aren't all like that, but i'm self conscience. I'm a new mom - a young mother to young children, and I admit on a daily basis that I don't really know what I'm doing. Moms of older kids intimidate me because of their experience and knowledge. It sucks having such reverence. You're right - we're all moms, and we should all be on the same page. If you make conversation with ME about our kids or your kids or whatever, I'll totally lighten up and be friendly. But? As it is, I'm intimidated by all that you've become as a mom and by all that growin' up that your kids have done and did.

SJ said...

I always feel like I have a hard time fitting in with other Moms, but I too don't know why that is.

You aren't alone, I can totally relate!

M said...

If they only knew what they were missing out on. I've relied on you for life advice, and mom advice, long before I was a mom. Everyone should be so lucky to have you as a 'mom friend' but even more so just as a human to know because you have WAY too much to offer!

I wish I had the magic answer for you. I often feel like I can't possibly fit in because I have a "special needs kid" or I have one of each sex or I'm married or I'm younger or I'm such a hard ass about speech delays or because I'm not PTA mom of the year or because my kids are on bottles (nevermind their other difficulties. no no. nevermind that.) or because I'm a fat ass or stay at home or my kids are too young or too old or I'm just not cool enough.

So duh you aren't alone. And you're about a million times more mom-a-riffic than I am. So everyone else? Clearly insane.

And I? incredibly jealous of the potential church goodness. Because I'm missing church something fierce.

Also? Wanna come put your mom skills to the test. I have two poop diapers that are stinking up the world on the butts of my offspring and I could really use you to show me how to do it. You expert you. ;) xoxoxoxoxo

Jan said...

Sometimes I feel this way too because I have "only" one kid. I have had a 25 year long career in child development but, what do I know- I "only" have one kid.

But relating to you as a mother? I absolutely do.

Lillie Swearingen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tarasview said...

I just wanted to tell you that my very best friend is only a couple years older than me but her kids are literally 10 or 11 years older than my kids. And she goes to my church and I am her pastor's wife. And it took a bit of effort on both our parts but we bridged the gap. And I adore her perspective. She HAS been there and I NEED those more experienced moms in my life!

And if your pastor's wife is as cool as I am (bwahahahaha... as though I'm cool) she will totally see how cool you are and want to be your friend... no matter what age your kids are.

:)

Rebecca said...

I can relate to this, too. I was 20 when I had my daughter. We are the youngest people I know who have grown children. I don't know if its the age thing or if I am just of a different mind-set from the majority of the soccer Moms. Actually, I kind of like the 2nd choice, because seriously? I like my point of view better.

Stephanette said...

Okay, so I'm just having my first kid, but I totally relate more to you as a Mom than most Moms my age with kids just coming. I'm glad I get to read your point of view. I hope that I can be as honest with my children as you have been with yours.

Anonymous said...

I think if you were with parents whose kids are the ages of yours, they'd be able to connect. We have kids all ages and so are pigeon-holed depending on the kids, not our age so much. Our youngest are 4, 6, and 8, so we were invited to a young adults thing at church--other people with early elementary kids. And we laughed because we're ten years older than all of them. No way are we young adults. We're fast approaching 50! But then our other friends have adult children like we do. You have plenty to offer, it's just the group you're with at the moment, lol. love, v

Sarcasta-Mom said...

I'ts definetely hard finding your mom "niche" and I can totally relate. I had my son when I was 19, and both of my kids have different fathers, which puts me in the super suck mom bracket as far as the rest of the world is concerned. It especially annoys me when the women at work have mom talks and none of them want to hear what I have to say, even though I have two awsome kids who are both still in one piece.

I hate that so many women still feel the need to compete, and judge each other, as moms. We have so much to learn from each other that it's just moronic to shun other moms. Lame....

Bug-N-Bee said...

I feel like I'm in the same boat. I was 21 when I had my first in 2001. Everyone is either far older, or shockingly younger, and I never feel like I fit in anywhere. Add being the whole one who's been married and divorced going on twice and I look like I'm sixteen...it's great.

Rachel said...

I know how you feel. I had Kaylie when I was 21. The only person that has kids close to my daughter's age is my best friend. All other parents with 8 year old kids are older than I am.

It sucks big time.

Tessa said...

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