I Didn’t Give Birth. Does that mean I didn’t get the “mom gene”?
Growing up, it seemed as though my mom had eyes in the back of her head. You know what I mean…She instinctively knew the minute a slanderous thought popped into my head or the moment I most desired to attack my baby sister. I always called it the “mom gene” and assumed that when you had kids it was omnipotently bestowed upon you at that life-giving moment.
But the mom gene went further. Mom’s carried tissues and gum in their purses. They knew how to get the ink out of the white cotton shirt. They knew how to teach a kid how to tie their shoelaces. I didn’t give birth so I feared I had missed the mom gene. I think that’s what scared me the most about inheriting my stepchildren.
I missed the shoelace phase, thank goodness. I can barely tie my own so we would have been off to a rough start. But I did land squarely in the “How do I iron these pants?” and “Can you help me with my report on John Brown phase?” Oh, and the “I need to have a dessert for homeroom tomorrow. Can you take care of that?”
Being the single gal that I was, it all took some getting used to. But I made an honest effort and succeeded more often than I failed. Eventually I came into my own. Dad no longer had all of the answers. Gara was good for something too.
Many years later, we have mostly settled into our respective areas. Dad gets the calls and texts for money. Gara get the calls and texts for everything else!
It just so happens that I paid attention for all of those years. So, I know Tony’s contact prescription and his pants size. I help Sarah’s husband choose a facial over a massage because I know that she doesn’t like to be massaged. And I am the one who rocks Kate’s baby to sleep because I’m the only other person who can do it.
I stepped into those roles resolutely prepared to do my darndest. What came with it was learning the ins and outs of life with Lacy kids, their needs, their wants, and that look when they just want to kill somebody! It didn’t happen overnight. But it did happen.
Maybe I was not initially blessed with the mom gene. However, it eventually settled upon me. And now, I’m the one with the gum and the tissues and the Shout Wipes. : )