This summer, something happened.
I turned into the mom from 90210. Yes, I became, without trying or wanting to, Cindy Eff-ing Walsh.
Old school 90210, guys. You know the mom who sported a total mom-hair-do, never had a life because she was too busy swooping into random scenes, dropping off cookies or driving Brenda and Brandon to the Peach Pit? Hosting after-school parties and encouraging her kids and their friends to make good choices that circle back to an unrealistic but addicting TV plot?
OK, I get it. We may not live in Beverly Hills. We may not have slow-but-sad-90’s-electric-guitar-melodies playing in the background. And God help me, I’m grateful I’m not raising Shannen Daugherty in mom jeans. (Brandon, now he’s a sweetheart, Brenda, she was a handful.) Anyhoo. My point, if I may try to land this ever-loving plane, is that I’ve become the new Mrs. Walsh. Replete with an iPhone, semi-updated but very end-of-summer-dead-endy-hair-do, two active but TV-ready Golden Retrievers and two great kids who at times may not think they need me and their dad anymore, but definitely had a fun summer because we provided free transportation, food and fun just about every day. (I’m not an Uber driver, but there were times I felt like one.)
Basically, this summer, I turned into something I often make fun of in spite of myself. I became a mommy martyr. I did everything for everybody else and put myself second, third, and sometimes, last. As a result, I stopped writing and put a “pin” in a lot of professional and personal projects. I let my ass go (grow). And I got a little cranky from time to time.
Don’t get me wrong, I love being a mom. But I have to say, I also like it when I’m not over-mommying.
And I definitely over-mommed and Mrs. Walshed my way through the break.
Oh, I did some stuff without my kids. Like going grocery shopping (and scrubbing grout). OK, I jogged (occasionally). And even went out with dear friends a couple times. But aside from those rare moments, I’m secretly thankful the summer break is over. I will miss the sunshine, swimming and s’mores fo-sho, but not the times I Mrs. Walshed my way through it.
I often wonder if my mom had this same problem. But then I realize back then, moms didn’t even know where we were half the time. We would wave goodbye after shoving down two bowls of Cheerios (with five spoonfuls of sugar) and not come home until the street lights came on. We could have joined a gang (at the mall) or tried to dye our hair (like Cyndi Lauper or Cindy Crawford), but we rode home safely on our Ten Speeds, just in time for The Muppets and Manwich Night.
I tried to capture a back to school photo (at 7 a.m.) today, and my kids didn’t really care. (Sniff, sniff.) Instead, my son, who is a sophomore in high school and my daughter (7th grader, like whatevs) decided to be silly by not smiling when I snapped the photo. My daughter playfully turned her back to the camera and my son made a faux-sad face.
Why would I expect anything different? They asked me to please not take a picture. “It’s too early, mom.” “We’re getting too old for this, mom.” But I did it anyway. Why? Because I’m Mrs. Eff-ing Walsh.
My kids are funny. They’re great kids. And I love them dearly. I’m grateful to be their mom. But….I’M ALSO VERY, VERY, VERY, VERY EXCITED THAT THEY ARE GOING BACK TO SCHOOL, BACK TO A ROUTINE, SO I CAN TOO! And so I can stop Walshing around and go back to being Jackie again. 😉