I’ve been thinking about my transformation lo these many years ago (15) from womanhood to motherhood and comparing myself and the other moms I know to Superheroes. Bruce Wayne and his ward slid down a pole, landing at the bottom fully prepared to answer the Batphone and get that tiny slip of paper clue from the giant blinking batcomputer. Superman and Maxell Smart needed their handy phone booths and Spiderman, I guess he just needed the lycra.
But it takes practically a year…and then a lifetime…and some good (and bad) examples to become any version of a mother. Mentally, emotionally, physically–the transformation takes a toll and then takes its sweet time.
I watched a few babies this past week and it struck me how far we are chronologically from those endless days and sleepless nights and yet how emotionally it feels so “near.” It struck me that one of the first babysitters we used who remains in my memory as a freshman in high school, is now in his 30s. Mind=blown.
I’m so often tempted to say…and sometimes I don’t resist the urge….”when ________was a baby…blah blah blah” we didn’t have matching burp cloths/car seats with bring-along seatbelts/strollers with anti-lock brakes AND WE LIKED IT! I just can’t seem to fathom that I’m not there any more.
But I did and I DO like it.
I thought I knew my kid’s personality when he was an infant, but now our knowledge and experience is so much richer. And because of that whole infant stage he doesn’t have any memory of, we know more than he does…and we have the photos as proof. He has hung on to some attributes from day 1 and others have come & gone with so many developmental stages. For example, those naps I so longed for him to take and he so stringently objected to? They are a desirable commodity now that conditioning for wrestling is overlapping with intense travel soccer training. Those road trips that were filled with chatty ABC games and count the cows are now blissfully quiet as he’s tethered to his PSP or humming to Kings of Leon and texting his peeps. All that time he spent making each of his baby sisters and brother laugh in their little bouncy seat is coming back now that they are competing to make him laugh on a daily basis. He is the king of the sibs.
But I am the superhero-in-training. Because his arrival turned me into a Mommy.
“To the laundry room AND BEYOND!”