Hey there, I’d like you to meet Sandra. She is a Manitoba gal, so I absolutely adore her by default. She makes me laugh, she is kind and incredibly smart. This is a woman -who after kids went back to school and is kicking ass along the way. She is an amazing writer, who is making some changes in her life, but I am glad I can still find her at The Huffington Post.
Hi! My name is Sandra, I am the mother of four, wife to a wise-cracking husband, registered nurse, and former fitness enthusiast. I used to be the author of a blog called Absolutely Narcissism, where I spent a lot, and by a lot I mean A LOT, of time writing about how wonderful I am. And then one morning, I woke up, and as my world was crashing down around me, I shut down the space where my glorious, selfish, self had abounded, and reprioritized my life. Fast forward a few months, during which time I missed my blogging relationships and the community that had supported me through so many trials and tribulations.
I restarted a new blog titled “Don’t Tell my Kids I Blog,” which had as its original purpose to entertain the masses with my witty anecdotes about motherhood, but has instead morphed into an area where I am coming to terms with issues my psyche has spent decades trying to contain; issues best saved for those who aren’t faint of heart.
I was very honoured when Kyla asked me to guest blog. I promise there will be nothing but merriment and hilarity (at least I hope you’ll find it hilarious, otherwise I’ll need even more therapy), as I describe in great detail why my children refer to me as an “Awkward Parent.”
The Awkward Parent
From the moment I found out I was pregnant with my first child, I was determined to be a cool parent. I would not be that parent who threw a book at my child which expounded upon the birds and the bees. I would be that parent who described in excruciating detail how the penis and the vagina… Well, you get it.
I would have a relationship with my children whereby I would be a friend, and they could come to me with any question; giggle about the boy/girl he/she had a crush on; lament to me about the horrible breakup; and use my wealth of knowledge and invaluable expertise in developing a strategy in order to exact revenge upon the fool who had dumped him/her.
I had a lot of things all planned out until that fateful night when I realized my plan was awash in a sea of doodoo.
Last year as I was driving my 16 year old son and his friend home from the movies, I could hear them joking around about their two other friends who were on a “date” with the one kid’s mother. So of course I hear this, and I ask them to elaborate.
“Well Dan, Sheldon, and Sheldon’s mom went out for dinner together. I think that’s so cool,” my son said.
“I’d go out for dinner with you guys,” I volunteered.
From the backseat, I could hear my son and his friend laughing. “What?” I asked. “What’s so funny?”
“Mom, I’d never take you out with me and my friends.”
In a manner most unsafe for my passengers, myself, and the other drivers on the road, I turned around to face the backseat. “Why?”
“Because you’re awkward,” my son said.
“Awkward? I’m not awkward! I’m cool!”
“See…saying your cool actually makes you awkward.”
I drove quietly the rest of the way home thinking my silence would make me cooler, which I pointed out to them, and which they in turn pointed out that, in fact, it did not.
I never understood this though. How was I not cool? I’ve always had an open-door policy with their friends. I supply awesome junk food when they’re over. I make my presence known when the kids are hanging out, but not too obvious so that I’m not all creepy and stalker-ish…How was I not cooler than the mom who got invited out for supper with two teenage boys?
Then the other night, when my son’s girlfriend was over for supper, I pointed out how lovely the weather was, and that they should go for a walk to the duck pond.
“Yeah, we were thinking of doing that,” my son replied.
Picking the jalapenos off of my nachos, I casually offered, “I can come with you guys. It’ll be fun!”
In that moment, I lifted my eyes to meet my son’s, and said, “And that’s what you mean by awkward, right?”
“You got it.”
FYI: Not only did I not get invited to the duck pond with them, the jury is still out as to whether or not I’ll be allowed to attend his grad next year.