I think it would be best for my children, and for me as well, if there were two of me. The first me will be the static, unchanging Mom who cooks their meals, sees that the chores are done, and cheerfully helps with homework. The second Mom will be the counterpoint, and the two Moms will become forces that balance each other — static. This new Mom will be the one who isn’t afraid to whittle away the afternoon letting the breakfast and lunch dishes sit, unwashed on the counter, while she curls up with a cup of tea and watches The Bishop’s Wife. The other Mom, the static one, will be the one who takes care off all the planning to ensure the family has a nice dinner later.
The second Mom, the one who doesn’t have to stop and do a calculation to determine if it’s mathematically possible to skip the laundry just for today, without precious family members having to go naked. The one who says, “Sure, we can spend all day at the park – there’s no place I have to be and nothing I have to do. ” Her hands are always free, dry and clean, ready to tie the costume and buckle the buckle.
The new Mom will eat pancakes with them in the morning, and will burst with excitement to tell them about her crazy whimsical dream. And, she takes the time to tell them all the fuzzy details she can remember. It’s the other, static Mom, who gets sidetracked and forgets the dream, as she notices that the syrup bottle is sticky, and grabs a towel to wash it before she puts it back on the table. And, especially important, the new Mom’s carefree bliss is invincible in the face of temper tantrums, whining and sibbling squables.
The new Mom will be well rested — OK maybe that’s pushing it. But, this new Mom will be able to finish her thoughts – the brain no longer missing synapses from pregnancy, followed by nursing, followed by toddlers who fill the sound waves with chatter and questions, such as “Why is the sky blue.” The one who knows exactly what’s she’s supposed to buy when she’s at the grocery store.
The new Mom is so carefree that she can load everyone up in the car for a “road trip.” No, she doesn’t own a mini-van – she has something way cooler, and everyone fits in the cool car. She brings along nothing but the spare change in the console, figuring we can all grab some cheese, tomatoes and berries and eat them right from the farmer’s stand.
This second Mom is what my kids need. I’m sure of it. It’s not that they need to see the Bishop’s Wife, or analyze the dream, or learn anything, or go for the drive … they simply need to see the smile on my face and the twinkle in my eye. Those things I would have, if I were just free enough to let it happen.