Now it isn’t what you’re thinking. But for nearly 9 years now, I’ve been called first mama then mommy. And I’m okay with that. Point of fact, I like it. There is such a warm safety to the name “Mommy”. It feels good, sounds like cold milk and warm chocolate chip cookies, a kiss on a scraped knee, a hug when you’re feeling blue. It sounds like someone that is loved.
The other night at baseball, my oldest son (who is 8 ½ thank you very much 🙂 was talking with a group of his friends. I heard it, but it didn’t register. “Mom?” called out across the field. I continued to chat with the other parents watching the game. I heard it again, this time with a more pleading, but not urgent, tone. “Mom??”
“Sheesh!” I thought. “Why doesn’t that kid’s mom answer him!” Suddenly there was a tap on my shoulder. “Mom? Can Kevin come over after baseball?” I was dumbfounded. Somehow I must have answered him because Kevin did come over, but that’s another slice. When did it happen? When did I graduate from “mommy” to “mom”?
It sounds so foreign coming from him that I forget to answer. Or, alternatively, I get the giggles when he calls me Mom. This is usually when he does it in the presence of his younger brother who invariably repeats after him “Mooo-oooom” in that sing-songy voice that is the tone of sibling teasing everywhere.
All, however, is not lost. After the kids were sleeping that night I was putting laundry away. It was dark as I slipped into his room and silently tucked freshly washed clothes into his drawers, laying out something for him to wear to school in the morning. A tiny whisper greeted my ears, “Mommy?”
“Hush, I’m just putting clothes away, it’s late, go back to sleep.”
“You know, I call you Mom around the guys, but here at home, with just us, you’ll always be mommy.”