By Jackie Hennessey of Venting Sessions
We’re moms. We get up every morning, at the crack of a$$, despite a teething baby forcing you out of bed at 1 a.m., 3:30 a.m. and yet again at 5:56 a.m. We may have slits for eyes all day, but for the love of Sarah Jessica Parker, we slap a smile across our face, especially when we run into a fellow mommy friend at the post office as your toddler is about to yank your arm off if he doesn’t get a dinosaur stamp right bleeping now. We try every day, to no avail, to maintain a level of suburban-mom-induced sanity. About the time your toddler becomes potty trained, both eyelids can open on their own and you start feeling human again. When your youngest takes the school bus to kindergarten, you cry. And then you run back to the house and try to squeeze in as much work and/or errands as you can in a two-and-a-half-hour span. When they enter first grade, you start to finally feel like you’re getting the hang of it. (The parenting thing, that is. Because we all know we didn’t know what the heck we were doing when we brought them home from the hospital.) You cry again because they’re getting big so fast, but you’re also secretly excited that you can finally carry on an adult conversation and fit in some “me” time and work time here and there.
But when you’re your oldest child becomes a tween, starts eating like a horse, and mumbles those inevitable words that make me cringe to even type, “I’m bored,” that’s when this mommy snaps. Do you know what my mother said to me (back when I was my son’s age and walked home from school in 90-degree Texas “spring-time” heat)? “Go play outside.” Even if I already was outside. She didn’t care that it was hot, humid and sweat was pouring down my freckled, sun-burned face. That’s why my parents gave me a fancy ten-speed with bright yellow handlebars for my 10th birthday. It’s called natural air conditioning. My best friends and I rode our bikes to U-Totem (Houston’s version of 7-11), snacked on giant Sweet Tarts, threw rocks in the lake and played outside until it was time for dinner. Practically every day. We would be gone for hours some days. When mom said “Go outside,” you bet your best pair of Forenza shorts you were going outside and playing with your friends right there in your own neighborhood. Eating candy and talking to strangers! Riding bikes on busy streets! It was the norm! My how times have changed. Now, don’t even get me started on scheduled play dates. (That’s something I cover in my book, How to Spread Sanity on a Cracker.)
My point is (and by the way, in case you haven’t noticed, I thrive on tangents), regardless of the ages of our children, there is a universal understanding when you hear the not-to-be-taken-seriously term, “mommy insanity”. (Along with a shameless sense of satisfaction when we hear tales of motherhood-driven “insanity” from other moms.) Think back to an experience that you’ll NEVER forget. Something that makes you laugh today. Something that can help other moms feel a little less insane. Do you have a mommy whine that you’d love to see in print? I will be selecting stories for my next book. YOUR story could be featured. I want to hear from you.
*** It’s YOUR turn to share YOUR story. I invite you to send in YOUR FUNNY STORY. YOUR WHINE. YOUR VENT. Write to me today at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include MOMMY INSANITY in the subject line. Please, no entries over 1,000 words. (The shorter, the better.) Send in your story and enter to win a signed copy of my new book, How to Spread Sanity on a Cracker. (A fun-to-read gift book for moms featuring quick mommy whines and cheese dip recipes. Because who doesn’t love whining with the girls over cheese dip?) Winners will be chosen and announced this summer here and on my blog, ventingsessions.com! Please make sure to include your name and email address. Anonymous entries will not be accepted, but I can change names (if you prefer) if your story is selected for my next book. The deadline for entries is June 10 at 5 p.m. Good luck!
Jackie Hennessey is a mommy blogger, PR consultant and author of the new gift book, “How to Spread Sanity on a Cracker”. Stop by ventingsessions.com to hear more about her imperfect journey through motherhood. Jackie lives in Barrington, Rhode Island with her husband, two children and Golden Retriever puppy that is apparently so overly friendly and hyper, she often refers to him as her third child.