Thursday, July 3, 2008


It’s so delightful when mothers hear the first mmmma, mmmma sounds coming from their babies’ mouths, especially after hearing da da, da da for months, even though we still feel the pangs from giving birth (those never go away, mind you, they just move up to your heart).

I taught my children to call me “Mommy” since that is what I called my great-grandmother, whom I adored. My mother actually wanted my children to call her that, but I said, no, that name belongs to me. Oh, how I loved to hear them say it in their sweet little voices.

I discovered, however, that somewhere around the age of six or seven, Mommy gets shorten to Mom and then shortly thereafter becomes, “Hey Mom!” And that is what I’ve been called ever since.

As a writer, I work from home most days, quietly pecking away at the computer, which works out great nine months of the year while the kids are in school. Once summer hits, however, I should pack up my keyboard because the “Hey Moms!” start in earnest.

A typical day goes something like this, Hey Mom! Time to wake up; Hey Mom! I’m hungry; Hey Mom! Can I drink in the living room? Hey Mom! Can I give the guinea pig a bath? Hey Mom! Tell her that a rhino is to tougher than a crocodile. Hey Mom! I’m hungry again.

Of course, my personal favorite is the one I hear when I’m on the phone. The minute I answer, I hear a frantic HEY MOM! HEY MOM! HEY MOM! Since I see that they aren’t bleeding, I put my finger up to say wait a minute as I shoot them a look. Next the kids mouth, “HEY MOM!” while I nod my head firmly, no. Then I finish my phone call, search all over to find the children, start to become worried because I can’t find them, finally locate them at the neighbors and ask, “Now, what did you need?” And without fail they always reply--say it with me—NEVERMIND!

You might think this is something they grow out of—it’s not. I have a teenager and whenever I hear Hey Mom, I cringe. It’s Hey Mom! I’ve wrecked the car, Hey Mom! Can I borrow some money? Hey Mom! I need (fill in the blank from bathing suits, to make up, to some other need du jour).

My husband will occasionally throw a “Hey Mom!” my way also. Those are the most dreaded because it’s usually something he feels that only a mom can take care of like “Hey Mom! Your son needs you in the bathroom,” which usually ends up “Hey Mom! Too late, he couldn’t make it.”

Of course, there are those times when it’s music to my ears like when my daughter says, “Hey Mom, snuggle with me.” and my son says, “Hey Mom, I picked a flower for you” and my teenager says, “Hey Mom, want to hang out?”

Then I’m reminded that one day soon, way too soon, they will be up and gone, and I will no longer go to bed with a days worth of “Hey Moms!” ringing in my ears. The thought brings tears to my eyes, but I can’t reminisce about it now…the kids are calling.

1 comment:

Angela McRae said...

A rhino is tougher than a crocodile? Who knew! (Of course I would pick up on that!) I am greatly enjoying your new blog. Keep up the good work!