Odd Mom Out

School has been out for about a week, and I am exhausted! I miss my children like crazy when they go off to school, but when they’re home all day and looking at me as if I were the Activities Director of their personal cruise line, I start counting the days until September.

And apologizing to every teacher-friend I have.

In all seriousness, the time together has been great. And because they attend a six-week Extended School Year program each summer, I have to make the most of the next few weeks.

So far, we’ve read books, hung out with Daddy, and stayed up way past bedtime. We’ve had freeze pops for breakfast, gone to the playground, and taken some amazing mid-afternoon naps.

(Okay, that last one was just me, but it was glorious!)

When I was a kid, summer vacation was the best part of childhood. The neighborhood was our oasis, and every day was an adventure. But outside of holidays and special occasions, I don’t remember my parents playing a constant, active role in those days of discovery. Perhaps because I was a stay-at-home mom for most of their lives, Jonan and Braylee expect me to get involved in their play. So I sing the songs, do the dances, and reenact their favorite movie scenes, stunts and sound effects included.

Braylee's version of Lucy and Frieda
But a funny thing has happened since they started attending school together: they don’t ask Mommy to play as much because they have each other. They sing songs I don’t know, have inside jokes I don’t understand, and play games for which I don’t know the rules. And though I’m smiling on the outside, I do feel a bit left out when they’re laughing hysterically and I don’t know why.

Yet isn’t this a beautiful problem to have? My children are so close they have an entire life that doesn’t include me. Sure, it’s mostly about Nickelodeon and The Peanuts Movie right now. But as they get older, that life will include battling peer pressure, navigating the awkwardness of middle school, and a host of other milestones for which they will need a vetted partner. And who better to fill that gap than their trusted sibling-slash-best friend? In that case, being left out isn’t such a bad thing for Mommy.

Guess I’ll go take another nap.


  1. I love this so much!!!!! As a teacher and mom!! I understand both sides of this! Watching my girls play together, hang out together, and even whisper makes my heart melt. It's the love and respect I've always anted my children to have. Great blog Denise!


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