Last night Mitch and I came home from a weekend at the lake and discovered that while we were gone Sam cleaned the house and did a bunch of chores because he was home alone. The house was literally cleaner when I got home than it was when I left. " Now THAT's how to raise a child! GOD I'm a fantastic parent!" I thought smugly to myself. After Sam told me that he put my clean laundry in my room and that the dishes in the dishwasher were clean, he went to bed.
I put in the movie Chasing Mavericks about a kid who wants to surf monster waves and gets a pseudo foster father to help him do it. I was watching the movie, still feeling pretty satisfied about what an OUTSTANDING parent I am, when I saw that the kid in the movie had the world's shittiest mother. The first time we see her in the movie she is drunk, sleeping a bender off, totally oblivious that her kid almost died in the ocean and got a ride home from a strange man in a VAN. When the kid came home he tucked her in and she rolled over and said, "There's hotdogs in the fridge," and passed out again. Then he poured her booze down the drain. "Oh. That's too bad," I thought. "He's not as lucky as Sam."
And then later in the movie the kid, who is about the same age as Sam, was heading out the door and he said something about how he washed the laundry and the dishes, and his mom's uniform was pressed and on her bed. "Hmm," I thought, "I'm having a feeling of deja vu. Weird." Then I thought back to before I left my baby for my weekend of leisure while he stayed here and worked and cleaned the house, I actually said the words, "There are hotdogs in the fridge!"
"Oh. My. God," I thought. Is Sam so good because he has to be? Am I the shitty mother from Chasing Mavericks? Is Sam the parent in our relationship and I'm so shitty I never even realized it??? Memories started flooding back:
~The time when he was a toddler and we played with a tiny plastic Sammy and Mommy dolls and he always wanted to be Mommy: at the time I thought it was because he loved me so much. I now suspect he was modeling proper Mommy behavior for me.
~The time when he was about five and was telling me a story about my dad and said, "...and then Grandpa (you know, you're dad) said I could...." At the time I thought he was a good story teller, but now I suspect he thought I was an idiot because I couldn't put together that his grandpa is my dad.
~When he would always insist on holding my hand in the grocery store parking lot; at the time I thought it was because he loved me so much. Now I think he was guiding me safely to the store.
My child has been raising me for his whole life and I never even realized it. Holy shit. What does this mean?
I think it means I should write a parenting book because HOLY SHIT, I AM AN AWESOME MOTHER!!! Have you SEEN how good my son is? IN YOUR FACE! (That will be the title of my parenting book - In Your Face! or maybe Holy Shit I am an Awesome Mother! or maybe There are Hotdogs in the Fridge) I'll have Sam start working on a first draft.
Now that we are all clear on who is doing the parenting and who is being parented in this house, I have some bones to pick with Sam about how Kira is turning out.