Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Mom I Want to Be

We had our block party back in June. The firefighters came and turned on their pumper so the kids could play in the water on our street. When Katie was two, the firefighters did the same thing at that year's block party. Katie wouldn't go in the water alone, so I took her myself. These are my favorite photos from that day. (Yes, that's her - the little one in the green hula skirt. Can you believe she was ever that little?!)

Before Katie entered my life, there were so many times I was a bystander to the world. I didn't want to impose myself on others by getting in their business, so I stood on the sidelines and tried not to "bother" others. Let me clarify that: I've never been a shrinking violet, but I also knew that people had boundaries and I tried not to overstep them and be rude. Being a mom has blurred those boundaries somewhat. My friend Mary and I were just talking and I told her I'd rather err on the side of being nosy and imposing on people, instead of just sitting by and watching someone who might need help and not doing anything to help them for fear of offending them. Does that make sense?

Being a mom has changed my way of thinking, and made me more empathetic and maybe more impulsive in some ways. I don't want to sit on the sidelines anymore. I want to jump in to the thick of things and truly live. It helps that I have two kids who haven't put on the yoke of self-consciousness yet. On a daily basis, they invite me to dive in and get WET. And that's why I love those photos so much. Most adults don't get too wet anymore. We're too "mature" for that, I guess. But once in a while, it's fun to act like a kid and join with the kids and be silly.

I did it again at this year's block party. With BOTH of my kids this time. And even better? Dan joined us too.
This is the kind of mom I want to be. When my kids are old and think back on their childhood, I hope it's moments like this that stick out in their memories.


Gina said...

I love this post. It's amazing what kids will do for you, right? One of my favoritest :) things about being a mommy is the opportunity to be silly. It's also the reason I don't think I'll ever go back to working in a middle school.

Anonymous said...

This is a beautiful post! :) It makes my eyes teary... that's the kind of mom I want to be too! Thanks for the reminder that it's good to LIVE life and get all the way wet sometimes. :)


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