I was googling around and decided to look up baby momma. I knew there would be many ah rap song and other ridiculous videos dedicated to baby mommas. I knew there was a movie titled Baby Momma staring Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. I also knew there was a baby momma dance. What I did not know was that there was a full definition on the MERRIAM-WEBSTER dictionary website, on Wikipedia and Urban Dictionary definitely, just not on MERRIAM-WEBSTER. They define a baby momma as, “the mother of a man’s biological child, especially: one who is not married to or in a long-term, intimate relationship with the child’s father.” This was the nicest version out there. Urban dictionary provides a description of a baby momma. “ poor, lazy bitches who trapped the man into getting her pregnant or tricked him by saying she was on the pill, thinking the man would pay her way in life just because she has a child with him.” Ugh! Rolling my proverbial eyes. As I read, I began to wonder how did this baby momma madness all began? What was the source or origin of this term? What I found was that it is not really clear how this term came about. Most ascribe it to the West Indies, stating the it has Caribbean roots. While I found an interesting article on theroot.com that suggest that the linguistic and root origin “is a symptom of the birth of Ebonics as a mash-up of assorted British regional dialects.”
After all of that it still pains me to say that I am a baby momma! I am laughing at myself at this very moment! I had my notes on what not to do in life and I had a plan. I was not supposed to become a baby momma this was not part of the movie. But after the divorce there I was thrust into baby momma hood! Of course, I made a new plan and charted a course for how this whole thing would go. I would work and the kids would go to school and activities and we would sit at the table for dinner and chat each evening about our day. It would look like a Norman Rockwell painting, just minus the dad. I did 90% of everything before the divorce anyways that last 10% couldn’t be that much harder. Right? Wrong!!! I was so naïve.
In the beginning things went great just as planned but as time passed balancing the schedules for all three of us became difficult. Add to that the fact the I had actual real-life kids and not the perfect ones I got to design to fit my plan. Sometimes my kids would do typical kid stuff. I did not create a space in my plans for typical kid stuff! You know kid stuff like not brushing their teeth, flushing the toilet, or taking forever to poo and making us late! They knew how to do everything so I just assumed they would just do it! sadly this was not a Nike commercial and while most of the time they would just do it there were plenty of times when they didn’t. I would go into panic mode! Being late or missing something caused me tremendous anxiety. I would get so mad I would yell and scream at the kids, which would usually make thigs worse. They would fumble around trying to do whatever they were supposed to have done and that would make me even angrier. I have to admit that the first six months of baby mommadom were a nightmare for all of us.
One Saturday afternoon things began to change. We were up and getting ourselves ready to go to something I told the kids to get dressed at the time the boys had to be around 11 and 9. They knew what the words get dressed meant but for some reason on this morning they went into full kid mode. We had eaten and getting dressed and heading out is on a 20- 30-minute time limit at my house. I emerged from my room dressed and ready to walk out the door only to find Ty in his underwear and one sock Q dressed but no socks and neither had washed their face or brushed their teeth!! They were playing around; I was so pissed that I can’t even remember what they were playing. I erupted!! I yelled I popped them both and they scattered in an attempt to do whatever I wanted them too. I was there fussing with every step they took! Blah blah blah!! NOW HURRY!! “We are going to be FUCKING late!” And yes, I said it just like that! What was the event you ask? I don’t know it was a Saturday it was probably soccer or going to something with friends, but you would have thought we were going to meet Barack and Michelle, by the way I was acting. Just before we were about to leave Q stopped me, he wanted to know if he could ask me a question. I know the look on my face was one of pure annoyance. I said, “yes just hurry what is it?” He looked at me with the sweetest sad face and asked me why was I so angry all the time? I almost went old school mom! For a split second I imagined what would have happened if I had asked my mother that question as a child. I can laugh about it now (my mom would have beat the crap out of me). In that moment I felt a deep sadness and so much sympathy for my two little cretins. How could they understand why I was so angry over something so insignificant if I didn’t even understand it myself? I had no answer for his question because I had not taken the time to ask myself why I was so angry, why did silly little things matter so much, and why was I taking it out on them? I truly wanted to cry in that moment.
That was the first major shift. I don’t know how to describe it but in that moment with just a few frail words my 11-year-old son with the full support of his 9-year-old brother backing him up had forced me to look in the mirror and start to ask myself why?
** crying in front of other people is extremely difficult for me. Even now if I feel the urge to cry, I suppress it naturally like a reflex. I have done it for so long even in moments where I want to cry around people often I cannot. I feel as if I am crying, like my body produces all the chemicals and inside I cry but it is rare for tears to breach the barrier of my eyes. The few times it has happened I was home and went to my closet until it passed. Oddly, I do have one good friend that somehow manages to pull it out of me from time to time.***