Confession: I want to be the coolest mom on the block.
A fit of giggles erupts from our dinner table. "My mom would never do that", I hear from a recent guest of my oldest child (age 9). "Yeah, that's my mom." We were having dinner, and the girls had just spontaneously burst out in song at the table. When they'd stumbled on one of the lines (the song escapes me at the moment), I was happy to chime in and finish the lyric in my loudest and most outlandish singing voice. While my daughter gave the "yes, I know my mom is nuts" look, our guest laughed and told my daughter that her mom would never spontaneously burst out in song at the dinner table, or anywhere else for that matter. My daughter was probably thinking, "lucky you", but I was thinking, "mission accomplished."
You see, while I pride myself on being a responsible parent and excellent caretaker of my three offspring, I also pride myself on being a hands-on, happy, fun, parent. I like being silly. I like dancing around the house to the current faves of my brood (even if I think what passes for music these days is pathetic). I don't mind singing along with the Taylor Swift song blaring from the girl's room. I was totally excited that two of the stars of iCarly had made a movie for Nickolodeon, and couldn't wait to watch Best Player for myself. And I have no problem sitting down and getting silly along with the latest game my kids come home from the schoolyard with. I mean really, how long ago was it that I was shouting out and clapping along to Miss Mary Mac myself? Okay, it was yesterday. So what? This is how I was before I was a parent, and honestly, it's the one thing that hasn't changed much about me since becoming a mom.
I am lucky enough that my kids still want to spend time with me. They still want to play games with me. And they still beg me not to leave when I have to go somewhere that does not involve them (one of the reasons you don't see me out very much). With my oldest nearing the drop-me-off-around-the-corner- embarrassment stage, I know that the stretches of time where she will want to play with me are soon to grow fewer and farther between. The other two will soon follow suit. And, as they get older, we're having more and more kids in and out of the house. We're at the age of sleepovers and constant requests for so and so to come over and "hang out". Hanging out by the way, is what takes the place of "play dates" around age 7. As she gets older, I know my antics will become less funny, and more OMG MOM! So, it would be foolish of me to squander this time; this time where I can "embarrass" them in the best possible way. In a way that they will, when they are much, much older and have kids of their own, recall in tales to their own children. It's my legacy. I'm the silly mom.
As I type this, my 6 and 9 year old daughter's are singing Tick-Tock by Kesha. And as much as I want to stop them, freeze them in time, and maybe not let them be influenced by such age inappropriate lyrics as, "before I leave I brush my teeth with a bottle of Jack...", I can't help but sing along. Hey, it's not Mary Had a Little Lamb anymore, but I'll take what I can get. And it's not all that bad of a song.