Adventures In Babysitting

In my 20’s, I really wanted to be a mom.  I would be an awesome mom, just like mine.  My kids would be involved in sports, theater, dance – all of the good stuff.

As I moved into my 30’s, though, I started to realize a few things.  One, kids are expensive – especially if you want them to have all you had and more.  Unfortunately, an opera degree and a career at the time in musical theater wasn’t something that lent towards saving for a college fund.  Second, being the youngest of 3 girls, I luckily didn’t have the pressure of producing grandkids, since my parents already had 3, with two more in the works.

When Matthew and I started discussing marriage, he was emphatic that he was good with not having children.  I found that I was okay with that as well.  Many people, including my family, didn’t believe me and it took some convincing that I was completely happy being my nieces’ and nephews’ Favorite Aunt, and doting all my attention on my own Fur-Kids.

Then when I got the diagnosis that I had Multiple Sclerosis, I realized that maybe it was all part of some master plan that I did not have children.  To be a Super Mom, you need tons of energy and patience – two things that I have been struggling with over the past year.

Now, all my friends are having kids, and it is a blast to see them with their babies, so every once in a while I get the “What-If” twinge.

I was in the middle of one of those twinges, then my sister had me watch her 11 and 8-year-old for a week and that twinge quickly was satisfied!

Don’t get me wrong – I love Caroline and Jackson dearly. They really are two of the most well-adjusted, intelligent, funny and talented kids I know.  How did they get this way?  Because these are two of the most involved children I know!  It was a week starting everyday at 6:15 am and going until 10:30, filled with carpools, school projects, talent shows, dance class, soccer and tennis practice, and many, many snacks.

And I got to do it all by myself.  It really was fun, especially getting to see Jackson interact with his school and soccer friends as he had two school shows – Oceans of Fun and Passport to Fun.  I also learned that he has a new obsession with hair gel.  Yes, he is an 8-year-old Zac Effron in training.

And Caroline – how do I describe her?  Imagine a Tasmanian Devil crossed with a baby giraffe, add the intelligence of a future rocket scientist, and then have it talk at about 30 words a second and you start to get the idea.  It was great getting to see her practice her solo and duet for an upcoming dance competition – was this really the girl who just a few years ago was just learning to shuffle ball change?

Needless to say, we ended the week with all limbs attached, no permanent scarring (just some accidental face tattoos, by falling asleep while doing homework) and only one ballet shoe ruined (by Bailey the Wonder-Dog).  We even managed to make waffles, teach Abby how to swim, and play board games!

I however, was exhausted…  Two days later and I’m still needing sleep.  It really was an adventure – plus it gave me an appreciation for all the Super-Moms I know out there!  Now I’m really looking forward to a Spa Day with my Mom to thank her for all she did that I never really appreciated!

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