I rarely get writer’s block but last night I typed words for over 90 minutes with nothing to show for it. I called it a night around 11:00 p.m. and went to bed cranky, which made Dave really happy as it was the first night we were home without the boys who went to camp yesterday. Which was probably why I was cranky. And definitely why I had writer’s block.
Sometimes life is a cliché. And I really don’t like clichés. I wanted to express how I felt without the boys in the house, knowing they would be gone for four weeks. And all I could come up with is how quiet it was without them. Ugh. It is so much more than that.
Motherhood tends to sneak up on me when I least expect it. Ever since Noah was born almost 13 years ago, I marvel at the fact that I am a Mom. Most days I feel like a kid myself, with all the questions and insecurities that are supposed to go exclusively with childhood – but they don’t. We all feel 13 – or 10 – or 5 some days; yet it usually goes unnoticed because we are too busy being grown ups. And despite the fact that I have tried to do the right things by my kids – and I love them dearly — inside I sometimes wonder if I am truly Mom material.
I question my casting the role of Mom mostly because there are days when I don’t want to be one. I fantasize about the things I would do if I wasn’t responsible for anyone but myself. And I looked forward to yesterday – camp drop-off day – like Lindsay Lohan is looking forward to her pending release from prison. I have a list of activities, behaviors and indulgences at the ready. I am free – for four weeks.
Do real Moms have those feelings? Do they admit them? I thought that I might have to fake a little sadness and angst just to keep my union card.
It turns out, I don’t have to fake anything. Dave and I arrived home yesterday to a very (sorry) quiet house. The kid’s crap is still everywhere (one of my planned projects) and there are no kids attached to the crap. And there are no kids attached to me. And despite my best attempts at playing the role of free and unencumbered party girl, I was overcome with a desire to go back to my classic role of Mom. Like Cathy Rigby plays Peter Pan.
Last night I found myself for a loss of words. This morning it all seems a bit clearer:
Becoming a parent doesn’t make you a whole person. It makes you a fraction of who you once were. And you don’t realize it until the other half of you – your children – are missing.
Camp will be a great experience for everyone – but today I’m looking forward to August 22 when I will feel whole again. In the meantime, the half of me that remains has some partying to do.