Monday, September 20, 2010

Tales From the Mid-Life Brain Or The Woman Who Once Was "Mommy"

Happy Monday to you!

Now that we have the niceties out of the way, let me say that I think my brain is dissolving.

In case you didn't know, when you become peri-menopausal, your brain and body start to dissolve, mainly from exposure to the inexplicably high levels of natural gas you emit.

In fact, every time I bend, I remember that there is more than one meaning to the British signs along the trains: "Mind the gap." For real, there is a "Facts of Life" episode for every mid-life woman wherein she earns the nickname "Tootie."

I hardly recognize myself anymore. My kids want the mom back who never cooked well but did not ruin bowls of cereal as she prepared them. Currently, the only thing I am able to cook is marshmallows over a campfire and M&Ms in bowls because they do not require milk to be poured over them. In other words, if you have to add or mix an ingredient in any food, it is already too complicated for me.

My kids miss the mom who remembered their birthdays. They want someone who not only remembers a date but most importantly, buys a gift. Or two.

They want a mom who remembers whether or not they have had wisdom teeth extracted.

But apparently, that mom is no more. For I did indeed forget to buy the birthday gift two weeks in a row, and I had to confess to my son I could not remember if he had oral surgery, for Pete's sake.

Don't even get me started about senior pictures. I forgot I had a third child until about 20 minutes ago.

Recently, I sat sorting a box of beads I'm using for my new hobby: jewelry making.

Stringing beads. That screams "nursing home."

Anyway, as all four or three of my kids sat around me, I reminsced about when they were little.

"Just about every day, I read you this sweet little storybook called, 'We Help Mommy Every Day.' Do you remember that book? It began, 'We help Mommy every day. We help her in the morning, as soon as we get up.'"

It goes on to chronicle a day full of chores made lighter by little helping hands--sort of glorified child labor, and I was indoctrinating you, hoping against hope that you would think it was the epitome of both fun and goodness to dust a table and sweep a floor. Do you remember Bobby and Martha?"

My beads plunked into their compartments without a response from my kids. Unless you count expressions like this as a response:

So later, I was in the kitchen pretending to fix their lunch, and they were hanging out with me. Not helping, mind you, but hanging out, which is almost as good.

My son, Jordan, said to me, "Don't worry, Mom. When you are in the nursing home, we will come visit you every day. I will even read to you. Do you know what I will read?"

And then he launched into a familiar sing-song reading voice mimicking mine from so long ago:

"We give our kids our money every day. We give them our money as soon as we get up ...."

Oh, the orneriness. But what he doesn't know is that as clever as that brainwashing plan is, it won't work. Because I will not remember that I have kids by then - so who would I give my money to???"



Lillie Mae Acres said...

OMGoodness, this is too funny. I guess by your descriptions, my question is answered. Yes, I am peri, pre, whatever you want to call it too!
The joy of teenage children, I have a very beyond his age wise teen that just loves to shake his head and roll his eyes at mom. We have a lot of laughter and love and that is what counts.

Darla said...

love it! and i hear more and more about the peri menopausal stuff. at least i'll be prepared and know what's hit me when it does. i sometimes think it has! this post made me smile, thanks. :)

Connie said...

I read that book to my children too! I'm sure your children will take care of you in your old age as will mine!! They better!!

Have a good week! Connie

Mocha with Linda said...

You are too funny! At least your issues give you good blog matereial - when you remember you have a blog. :-)

The illustrator of that book, Eloise Wilkin, is possibly my favorite children's illustrator.

I'm thinking they did not mix up your babies and send you home with the wrong ones - at least not that son of yours!

Patricia said...

Linda!! I am so there with you!! Thankfully mine are all out on their own. And as long as I don't forget to pick the 5 year old grandson up from school, everything is good. I only forgot to pick up my son (now 21) 3 times his freshman year...from a private school 11 miles from home. Ooops! It was much easier when we moved a 1/4 mile from his new high school the next year. Then he managed to get himself to the house.

I set an alarm to remind me about the grandson. ;p My public excuse is that I'm working on a tough part of the novel I'm writing.

But I did just get a text from hubby. It reads: Don't forget to eat. :)

Mama Belle said...

I needed this this morning. I feel way better about myself as a mommy now. Thanks, Linda!;)

izzy said...

Hahah!! Interesting post! You are really funny. And my niece loves that book too!

Nel said...

Ohhhh you are too funny! Love it, still chuckling! We had that book too. The other day I told my daughter to remind my son in law that I once gave him a roof over his head and food to eat and his reply was... Tell her she has a standing reservation at Shady Pines! You gotta love those kids!
until next time... nel

DidiLyn said...

Dang it. I am so there with you, but so wish I wasn't.
This needs to E.N.D., and soon.
Your kids are funny. :-)

Susanne said...

I haven't got to the sorting beads thing yet, but I am forgetting things. all. the. time.

"pretending to make lunch" cracked me right up.

Roxanne said...

Excellent post. Hilarious. And how did I get here? :)

Carol said...

Do you know that when you finally get through menopause, the hot flashes have really fried the memory banks - kind of like when the computer overheats and it fries the hard drive. You did know that, didn't you? Hey! That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Mary said...

I feel so much better knowing that it's not just me who's doing some of those things!

Martha in PA said...

It is terrible how the mind starts to go, yet in my house I am still expected to remember EVERYTHING.. my 13 year old has a great memory for everything UNIMPORTANT.... where is this, where is that, did you remember I needed this, or that, does she not realize how much trouble I have keeping track of myself throughout the day?????

Joyce said...

All I have to say is that when you hit this stage of life you realize pretty quickly why there are volumes written on the subject of 'coping' with mid life. It truly does require management on multiple levels.

Anonymous said...

Nursing home? Did your son actually say those two words to you? And you let him get away with it without kicking him in the rear?

You are a woman of far more grace than Your's Truly.

Or else, you are a far wiser woman, because if I tried to pull such an antic, my boy would grab my leg and make me fall on my own rear.

Wait. I think I just remembered that he actually did this to me.

Obviously, you're in far better shape than me. I'll save you a place in the old home. *wink*

Beverlydru said...

Oh Lid, you have lots of company. We need to be sure there's a Bloggers United Nursing Home. We'll have a blast.
(I almost typed Boogers United)
Theose folks would be friends with Tootie.

Chambray Blue said...

I LOVE THIS POST> And I relate in a big way!!

Jerralea said...

There's where I made my mistake! I didn't have a copy of that book "We Help Mommy" when my kids were little! (Instead, I read to them "Is Your Mama a Llama?") I wonder if they have a version, "We Help Grandma," so I can be prepared when the next generation gets here?

Anonymous said...

I am SO there!

Off now to mail my college boy's delayed care package, because I keep forgetting to mail it!!

Lelia Chealey said...

This is great!!!