Wednesday, March 21, 2007


For the first 14 months of Little Man's life, I'm the one who taught him stuff. I taught him to sign "milk" and "more." I taught him that you shouldn't groove to Fergie songs unless they're titled "London Bridge," because the rest of her songs are just crap where she showcases her inability to properly spell words like "tasty."

But now, he's been going to daycare for four months, and when we all hang out together, he'll showcase something new he learned at school and instead of making me proud, it just makes me sad. Like how he learned to curve his arms backwards while making "Ah! Ah! Ah!" noises, to imitate a monkey, making him look like a monkey with scoliosis. Or the other day, when he put his hands up and instead of saying "Eeni!" which I taught him (it's supposed to be "fini," French for finished), he said "all gone!"

And that's when my heart stopped. I looked at Sweetie Pie and near tears I said "he learned to say "all gone! I didn't teach him that!"

And at that moment, I wanted to say screw the huge credit card bills we still have, screw wanting to maintain some kind of career, even if I'm no longer on a path to run the world of PR. Screw it all. I just want to stay at home and be the one who teaches my son the colors and the alphabet and how to blow bubbles with gum. And also how to search online for discount codes for shopping Web sites, because that's a really important skill.

I know that unless I homeschooled, which would be the equivalent of having a blind man teach someone how to drive, there is no way I can be the one who teaches my kid everything.

Plus, he'll probably learn all about the birds and the bees from the bad ass kid when he's in grade two.

But I can't help but feel sad about this. I never thought I would, to be honest, but this is why they say that kids change everything.

I remember when I decided I wanted a baby. One of those Johnson & Johnson commercials came on. It was black and white. It had a mom bathing this bald baby in the kitchen sink and as he splashed around, the voice over said "you've always lovedtall and dark-haired men. So who knew the love of your life would be short and bald."

Cue Catwoman bawling her eyes out as her uterus screams "we want a baby!!!!!"

And of course, when I was pregnant, I thought that really, having a baby wouldn't change anything.

But it has.

It's led me to go to work every single day and wonder if I'm doing the right thing.

It's led me to have my heart wrenched when I drop off Little Man at his new class and he cries.

It's led me to think when I was staying at home with Little Man that I wasn't spending enough time stimulating his brain and he was going to be behind.

It's led me to believe that there is no such thing as a perfect mother and that no matter what I do, I'll feel guilty.

I'll feel guilty if I spend an entire afternoon running after Little Man making growling noises and screaming "I'm going to get you" instead of teaching him the alphabet or how to properly eat with a spoon.

I'll feel guilty when I give him his Elmo book and tell him to read to himself so I can watch American Idol.

And I'll feel guilty probably every day when I drop him off at school that someone will be spending about 75 percent of his waking hours with him instead of me.

What I'm learning is that being the best mom to my son is just being there for him when we are together. And as long as he's a well-balanced, happy kid, the rest doesn't matter.




Beccy said...

Sounds like you're doing all right to me.

That Chick Over There said...

You are doing fine. You are.

Elle said...

You know what I've learned? You can't be there to witness every iota. I mean I wonder what one of mine learned maybe when I was in the can or something LOL. I'm sure you are doing a terrific job!!