If you’ve found your way to the Odd Moms Club, I’m betting there are reasons you sometimes feel like you don’t fit in either.
That is, of course, my story and the reason OMC was founded. But, I didn’t share with you in my first post why I feel this way. And ‘odd’ is not usually a word used to describe oneself, so why have I chosen to use it here?
Meriam can help…
The dictionary defines ‘odd’ as…
I like that last one…’fantastic’! Thank you…I certainly am, LOL.
But, all joking aside, more often than not, I find myself relating to that first definition…’differing in nature from what is ordinary, usual, or expected’. Wow, that hits home.
There are several reasons I think myself odd.
WARNING – I’m going to be very real in sharing these reasons with you which, gulp, is a little scary! Some of these confessions would probably be better left unsaid. I also feel shame and guilt over with these.
But maybe, just maybe, the 5 reasons I think of myself as an “odd mom” resonate with you too?
1 – I’m an introverted mama.
In other words, play dates? Kill me now. Birthday parties? No thank you.
Terrible, isn’t it? I really struggle with this. Because the truth is…I want to love these things! Truly! I would love to dive into a play date with nothing but excitement and joy.
Instead, I turn into a ball of anxiety. I withdraw into myself. I don’t talk…not because I don’t want to but because my brain literally shuts down and I can’t think of anything to say.
As a result, the other moms aren’t comfortable approaching me and so they keep their distance. And I am, quite literally, left standing outside of the circle.
But what do us moms do when we know something that we abhor would be good for our kids?
We suck it up. And we do what needs to be done.
So as much as I dislike these kinds of social events, I take my daughter to them. Because it’s good for her. And that’s what matters most.
2 – Much of my life is spent in an alternate universe generally referred to as “special needs”.
If you’ve been following the OMC, you know my daughter was diagnosed with Down syndrome shortly after birth. The diagnosis was completely unexpected. We had no clue during my pregnancy.
So when the pediatrician shared his suspicions with us, we were suddenly thrust into the “special needs world”, of which we knew nothing. Squat. Zip. Zilch.
Now, almost 10 years later, we have learned how to navigate these waters; but, between the doctors, the specialists, the therapists (OT & Speech), IEPs, Special Education, local county services, federal services, and everything in between, it’s clear that my “mom world” is different from the expected, the usual, the ordinary.
3 – Kids scare the hell out of me!
I grew up an only child. And both of my parents were not kid-lovers.
So as I was growing up, I got the pleasure hearing my parents complain and gripe about other children.
The result? I am now scared of children.
I do not want to watch your children. I do not want to host a play date. I do not want to be the only adult left in a room full of kids.
I am only genuinely comfortable around my own child.
4 – I don’t love being a parent.
I purposely used the word ‘parent’ here rather than ‘mother’. Mostly because I do genuinely enjoy the “mothering” part of parenting.
But the actual job of parenting? I don’t love it.
I don’t love feeling like I’m the only parent in this 3 person household. I don’t love that I’m usually the only one to enforce the rules. (Hell, I have to make the rules too.) I don’t love all the extra things I have to do as a parent because of Kendall’s diagnosis.
And when my patience and tolerance has run out, I certainly don’t love that the need to still be a parent continues, when all I want in that moment is for one thing in my life to be easy.
5 – If I had to do it over again, I’m not sure I would.
This is the one that hurts the most.
Since having my daughter, I have grown so much.
Learning to be a parent is one thing. Also having to learn to be an advocate for your child and her basic rights as a human being, is on a whole other level.
The energy it takes to continue to fight day after day is astonishing.
And I naively thought it would get easier as she got older. It does not. If someone tells you this, they are lying! It only gets harder and more complicated.
In my darkest moments, I regret becoming a mother.
…then I see her sweet face and I remember why I do what I do each and every day.
Because she deserves a place in this world, just like everyone else.
And she only has me to make sure she gets it.