What is a Mom? Here’s What.

I wasn’t one of those women who always wanted children.  I just assumed they would show up sometime in the vague future.

You can’t decide whether to have children by making lists of pros and cons.  It’s like when you first get balance on a bicycle. When it happens, you go, “Oh, NOW I get it.”

Sadly, there are no test drives. You can only get the duh/aha of motherhood AFTER you have the children.

Here’s what I learned about what a mom is, from the two spectacular babies who taught me how to grow up.

What Is a Mom?

A mom is someone who will invite you into her bed when you come into her room at 2 a.m. — it’s always 2 a.m. — saying, “I just threw up.” A mom goes back to sleep because she can’t bear to face what’s waiting in your room.

A mom is someone who will give you “Mom Eyes” — this is when actual fire shoots out of her eye holes — when you do or are thinking about doing, something stupid.  This can also include a Dope Slap at no extra charge.

A mom is someone who will tell you about yourself in language that is pristinely, crystal clear, for your own damn sake.  Maybe sometimes she’s also right, but that’s just for bonus points.

A mom is someone who will give you a lot of Free Advice, which you are welcome to ignore. At your own peril. Fine.

A mom is someone who will make Breakfast for Dinner and announce it with exclamation points to make it sound like fun! Because she’s too tired to make anything other than pancakes!

A mom is someone who, in desperation, invents something called “Pajama Party” to get you to wind down on Sunday nights. It includes eating takeout Chinese food in her bed, on trays bought specially for these occasions, and watching kids’ movies she is utterly uninterested in. Woe unto she who blows off Pajama Party, for any reason, ever, no matter how cute her date is.

A mom is someone who wants you to only do what you love as your life’s work, even if it includes a stripper pole. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

A mom is someone who wants to spend the whole day riding every big, scary, roller coaster with you at the amusement park because laughing really hard with her children is The Best.

A mom is someone who will mess with anyone who messes with her child. Her motto is: Punish evildoers unto my children first, ask questions later.

A mom is someone who will want to take your sadness and hurt into her own body because she can’t bear for you to carry it at all, or to carry it alone.

And you never have to.  That’s what’s moms are for.