Monday, March 27, 2006

Blue Ribbons

I am a little afraid to get pregnant at the same time my peers are planning and having children. I have every reason to believe that save for a very few folks, I will be socializing within a Gymboree hell.

Let me describe what kind of mother I am. I did not enroll my eldest in any school which required an entrance examination or had a waiting list. I did not take roll after roll of pictures, and to this day I don't often look at the few which do exist. He has approximately 19,000 fewer extra curricular activities than the children of the PTA Board Member set. We have never attended any activity which began with the words "Mommy and Me".

I want my son and any future child to have the same upbringing I did. Evenings and Saturdays were for exploring the yard, catching bugs and playing with pets. Piano lessons and dance and skating and all that were fine, in moderation. I don't remember ever having more than one commitment outside of school in a week (if you don't count church. I am a preacher's daughter. Name any activity which happens inside a church, and my parents co-chaired it and volunteered their children to staff it).

I had a name for these people when my son was younger. I called them Gap Moms. They seemed to have an endless supply of crisp khaki pants, and always scheduled the PTA meetings for 4pm on a Tuesday because they had no other activities, like a job, to preclude them from doing so and couldn't understand why some of us did. They packed cups of fresh fruit for their children, who miracle of miracles, ate the bananas and strawberries without every transferring any of it to their clothing.

And then there was my kid, who I literally had to bathe immediately after dinner if I dared serve anything with a sauce.

I do not know if I am going to fit in with the current crowd of new parents. They will be planning sugar free menus weeks ahead of time, signing up for art lessons and emailing out monthly photo albums. I will be in the grass with my son or daughter making mud pies.

They will be cooking delicately balanced meals and shopping at Baby Gap. I will be cutting up turkey hot dogs for lunch and frequenting the clearance rack at TJMaxx.

I'm a good mother, I think. I just lack the gene which compels a person to show everyone via a pictorial essay.

Here's hoping there's one more person out there, planning a kid, who feels the same.


Dilly Dilly said...

Honey, I will be just like you! I grew up with patches on my pants and processed meats in my lunchbox. My favorite game was making a fort in the backyard with the picnic table, and old tarp and the blanket my mom kept in the car's trunk to put under the tires if we got caught in a snowbank.

I want my kids to be okay with playing in dirt, using a stick as a horse as they gallop down the street, make Barbie clothes out of Kleenex, spill food on occassion and just be a happy, creative and grubby child. Not planning on TTC for a few years... but I have the same mentality! :-)

laura said...

monthly photo albums of your baby ... who ever heard of such a thing?! ;-)