I’ve become my mother. It’s an unexpected transformation, and it didn’t happen overnight, but looking back, the warning signs were clear.
The first time the words, “I hope you have a daughter just like you, someday,” escaped my lips in response to a defiant teen daughter, I probably should have enrolled in an intervention program, but denial runs deep for this mama.
My mother is a great word economist. Growing up (and as lately as last week), I experienced no shortage of frustration at her predilection for “finishing” statements in the middle of a sentence—as if everyone should simply know what Mom meant to say. For example, she’d say, “I’d really appreciate it if you could go into the laundry room and… (pause)…”
“And WHAT, Mom?” I’d insist. “Go into the laundry room and do the Hokey Pokey? Snort the laundry detergent? What IS it, Mom?”
Sometimes, asking Mom a question prompts answers having nothing to do with the subject at hand—a phenomenon I never clearly understood until becoming a mother. The problem is, we mamas have so much going on in our minds at all times, it’s hard to sort out what is most pertinent at any given moment. I’m grateful my kids are more patient with me than I ever was with my mom, especially when conversations go like this:
Pockets: Mom, can I borrow the car? I want to go to the movies with Sam.
Me: I think that would be okay, but before you go, I need you to… (pause)…
Pockets: Take out the trash? Feed the dog? Load the dishwasher? What IS it, Mom?
Me: Do you think we should have burritos for dinner next week?
A couple months ago, I crossed the point of no return when I cut the feet out of Snugglebug’s blanket sleeper to get a few more months of wear out of it. In a feeble display of I’m Not My Mother-ness, I refused to dig out my sewing machine to stitch binding onto the raw cut edges. Now, they’re just unraveling slowly with each washing.
See? I’m not my mother. Right? RIGHT?
I almost fooled myself, until I licked a napkin to wipe some dirt off Curlytop’s face the other day. Let’s face it—I’m a goner.