Who are you right now? What do your kids call you? Are you “mommy”? Are you “mom”? Are you “mother”?
I was thinking about this the other day when my oldest, who is currently living at home at the ripe old age of 22 and is looking for a job, sort of wafted down the stairs with a sing-song voice and said “mother dear…….”
Of course this sort of behavior immediately alerts me to the fact that my oldest
baby child is in need of something that he probably could do himself but is going to request my assistance anyway because…… well because that’s what kids do, they call upon the woman of the house when they need something. In this case, that happens to be me, the mom.
I remember the days when I was referred to as “mommy”. Those were the days when my kids were really little and perhaps had had a bad dream and called “mmmoooommmmmyyyyyy” from their bedroom. Or when daddy would say, “what did mommy say?” Those were the early years. The years from about 1-5.
Then they go to school and they don’t want to sound like babies so they start to refer to us as “mom”. “Mom, can I go to her house after school?” “Mom, can I have a sleep over?” The “mom” stage seems to last the longest. Even still my kids will say “mom this” or “mom that”.
The mom stage is also the time when I believe the term “mom” gets it’s most use. To the point of “if I hear the word ‘mom’ again, I am going to scream!” Like from the backseat of the car….. “mom…..mom…….mom……..mom…….MOM!”
I honestly don’t know any other word in the English dictionary that is so incredibly worn out.
And how about the word “mother”? I don’t really like the word “mother”. Maybe because it has been used with so much profanity, I don’t know, but it always sounds so formal so demanding. It’s just not my favorite term of endearment when it comes to the fruits of my loins addressing me. Maggie agrees, she says “mother is too formal” but she doesn’t want to be called “mom” either………
“No, I don’t want to be Mom. That’s what I called my own mother, and when she died, that title was buried with her. The way number 42 has been retired for Jackie Robinson, that’s how I regard the word “mom.”
Also I don’t feel like a “mom,” a word that conjures all sorts of things that I’m not. Soccer moms. Tiger moms. Diner advertisements for food “just like mom used to make.” Choosy moms who choose Jif. Mom jeans.”
Maggie decided “mama” worked better for her…….
“I like “mama.” So do a lot of other people, according to a fantastic essay by Elissa Strauss, “The Rise of ‘Mama.’” Strauss looks at the increase of blogs and publications that feature the word “mama,” like Hip Mama, Wellness Mama, and Alicia Silverstone’s The Kind Mama.”
While I love it when “mama” is one of the first words out of junior’s precious little mouth, it still has a hillbilly sound to me that I will never be able to stand. Like a doll with a pull string that has that creepy voice recording repeating over and over “mama” “mama” “mama”.
Besides the fact, did you see the movie “Mama”? It was totally scary!
The word “mother” is a totally different story. “Mother” makes me a little mad. Perhaps I have suppressed my own childhood memories wherein I addressed my mom with the term “mother”. “Mother” just seems so bossy and rigid to me. And to be honest, my mother is not my favorite person so I have trouble with that title.
It’s funny, the word for “mom” comes in many shapes and sizes but they all mean something different to each person. Just like all moms come in different shapes and sizes and they all mean something to each child they parent.
What do you like to be called? Has this term of endearment changed over the years as your kids have grown older? Any other “mom” type nicknames you go by? Would love to know…..