If you’re like me you enjoy being a mom and find it incredibly fulfilling in countless ways, but you also reflect back on your care-free teen years with fond nostalgia. On occasion I find myself daydreaming about being a teenager again. I even enjoy those silly movies where the adult trades bodies with the teen (slightly ashamed to admit that). Recently I got to thinking about how life as a mom is remarkably similar to being a teen, which is something I hadn’t realized before now.
1. No Drinking Alcohol
From the earliest moments of pregnancy, whether you’re trying for a baby or if the pregnancy test reveals a surprise, you go dry on alcohol. I know that not every mom can or wants to nurse for very long, but in my case I breast-fed my first-born for two years. As soon as I weaned her off the breast, I got pregnant again, and followed the same routine with my son. From the time I first learned that I was pregnant until I was able to drink again, I had been 5-1/2 years dry. This scenario is fairly common with moms. Just like when you were a teenager.
2. You Have No Clue (but you pretend that you do)
Somebody once summed up parenting in the following way: Kids pretty much raise themselves, the parents are just there to try to keep them from dying. While I wouldn’t subscribe to that philosophy entirely, I do understand the sentiment. A lot of parenting involves having no idea what to do, but you try to figure it out and make your best guess, all while presenting an aura of authoritative confidence. In other words, you have no clue, but you pretend that you do. Just like when you were a teenager.
3. Homework For Hours
Somewhere around 4th Grade the homework really seems to pick up, and up, and up. I personally believe that kids are assigned far too much homework nowadays, but that’s a subject for another time. I spend hours every night, and some weekends, helping the kids with their homework. Its primary focus of every weekday evening. Just like when you were a teenager.
4. Sneaking Sex
When you have kids you simply will no longer be having sex whenever you feel like. Your sex life will have to devolve to sneaking around all over again — just like your teen years. In the garage, spare bedroom, even the spare bathroom. Make sure nobody’s around, lock the door, be super quiet…
Mom: (whisper) Damn, I thought they were watching TV!
Dad: (whisper) They WERE!
Kid: Are you in there?
Dad: Yes! What do you need?
Kid: I need to go pee.
Mom: You know how to pee by yourself, just go do it!
Kid: What are you doing?
Dad: (whisper) OH WHAT THE F—! Do they have radar?
Mom: We’re just taking a little nap.
When kids come along, the sexual freedom of your twenties and the honeymoon period of your marriage disappears, and you resume to sneaking around for sex. Just like when you were a teenager.
5. The Damn Minivan
In the early teen years you have your mom drive you and your friends everywhere — in the minivan. You learn to drive — in the minivan. Once you’re granted the freedom to drive yourself around — the minivan. For some of us, when you move out or go off to college — minivan. I hated minivans all through my teens (and beyond), and wanted nothing more than to drive something other than that. Fast-forward 15 years and a couple of kids, soccer practices, birthday parties, camping trips — pretty soon all the space in those minivans looks really appealing. Back to driving the damn minivan, just like when you were a teenager. (It might even have enough room to sneak some sex!)