Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Dear Mom: M is for Moisturizer

I read a post by a young woman to her mother.

It’s a sweet letter, filled with a clear love for her mother, entitled, “To a Fantastic Mom.” I saw the title and had to read it. I wanted to know what wonder woman was on the other end of that praise. I also wanted to know what kind of kid actually said that about their mother.

She’s twelve. While I’m sure she can give her mother a run for her money? She was truly sweet in the note. I want to hire her to come give my boys some lessons in appreciation.

I love to read what kids write about their parents. Her mother had written a previous post describing beautifully the transition into menopause while watching her own daughter turn into a woman. Her daughter’s response was teenage honesty-I love you, you’re great but I still don’t want to go to the mall with you.

I’m curious because my kids are growing up with a family structure not often seen or talked about anywhere else. I need to gauge their angst against other kids’.

My oldest son, Ben, is eleven. He’s never going to write a letter like that- ever. If he did? I imagine he would start by saying, MOM, I’m sending you a link to a great botox place. Allan is ten years older and he looks five years younger. Why? Can you say moisturizer? Or is that something you won’t do, along with dresses, high heels and a little make up?

On Mother’s Day, we met up with Walter and Allan- the kids’ Dads- and went for a walk in Arnold Arboretum. It was Lilac Sunday. The sun was out, lots of people were walking around and the air was perfumed with the scent of lilacs. All was right with the world- or so I thought.

Ben came up to me.

MOM, he said, hands on hips, eyes rolled up, jaw dropped.


I just saw my friend...

I turned around, expecting to see the friend close by. You did?

Yeah. Ben was annoyed.

Oh, honey, why didn't you go say hi?

Because YOU were walking.

Ben, I didn't see her... you should have simply stopped and talked to her. We would have noticed eventually.

Yeah, right, he angrily stuck his chin high in the air and walked far ahead.

I’ll never get a letter of praise from Ben. If I’m lucky, a long letter filled with grievances and my most horrible mistakes that pretty much ruined his life. Like walking by his friend unknowingly in the Arboretum- really, how could I? The fact that I won’t let him have a cell phone is more than any eleven-year-old boy should have to bear. I can’t even mention the horror of not being allowed to watch television on weeknights.

The good news? For all my son has to complain about, never once does he complain he has two lesbian moms. Nor does he complain about the addition of two gay dads, leaving him with four parents- two moms, two dads, no divorce. He brags about having two homes, something kids of divorce rarely do. In kindergarten, a little girl complained it wasn’t fair that Ben got to have two moms. Ben smiled.

Twice as many reasons to go to therapy, I thought to myself.

He’s still smiling. Well, when we haven’t been too annoying. One of his moms is taking him to see Gwen Stefani in concert- the other would rather have her eyeteeth pulled (that would be me). Both of his Dads lobbied to have the no TV rule waived for American Idol.

And Red Sox games.

After his fury for my missing his friend in the crowd, he looped his arm through mine and walked through the lilacs.

In public, no less. I guess I was dressed appropriately.

Someday, he may write a sweet letter to me, hailing my ability to be a mother. Or a not so sweet letter hailing my ability to be a … mother. Either way, I’m sure he’ll attach a list of wardrobe do’s and don’ts. That’s okay- it seems even the sweet young woman had some issues with her mother’s wardrobe.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

please contact me about a writing opportunity. thanks.

2:57 PM  
Blogger Keri said...

Great post!

3:34 PM  
Anonymous Googie Baba said...

I love reading about your "older" kids. I feel like I am getting a sneak preview...

Good luck with the MCAS!

10:01 PM  

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