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A Baby is Only As Good As Its Mommy?

November 14, 2012

How silly a premise, isn’t it? Any of us mothers would know better than to say it, but we might think it, ruminate on it and talk about it with our closest friends. In my own case, I often think it, but dismiss it. There are so many other aspects that go into raising a baby: its own soul-path, genetic make-up, personal experience(s); its birth experience, the experience of the mother during conception, climate change, etc.

So, when people ask how my latest baby, NURTURE, is doing, I always answer first with pride in stating the facts: It’s traveling North America; it’s the only show of its kind; it was designed to make a difference, dispel societal myths, open discourse, rearrange thinking about women in middle age. I understand that it has touched people’s hearts and minds. It has caused discourse and ongoing discussions. It has provided a window into this phenomenon; a much-needed mirror for members of this group. Also, in its second year on earth; it’s really still in infancy, without a sense of how it will turn out, when it grows up.

And, then they look hard at me, the Mommy and Creator. As a Type-A personality, achieving less than the highest heights is often a disappointment for me. I must constantly monitor my internal and external reactions to not always being on top. But, also, my experience of being a Mommy – a Midlife Mommy, no less! – with my younger children, has been enough to force me to employ other practices. You see, being over 50 has its pluses (don’t get me started on the minuses, please!). It’s true, I’m more patient. It’s also true that I work hard to find daily gratitude and grace in all that I do. Finally, and most importantly, the overachiever in me has learned over (mommy-) time that heaping my methodologies and goals onto my own children is truly often a clear-cut prescription for disaster.

And so we come to NURTURE. I had such astronomical hopes for it – had expected for it to be on the Oprah Show, for me to be invited to the White House and to have become a household-name along with the women subjects in the show. I had hoped that many of the dozens of midlife mothers I now have at my disposal would be utilized in the Dove and Got Milk ads; that Proctor and Gamble would recognize our vast buying power; that the country’s oldest organization for individuals over 50 would invite us in the front door, rather than swing open a side-window for the air to blow out and not all around us, in love. (OK, so some of the above isn’t exactly true.)

Although I am an only child, I suffered from the first-born-child-syndrome – expecting the very most of it all, and being disheartened when it came to pass with lowered results.

So you see, I, too, am guilty of my foibles and fallibilities. But of this, I am sure: that I have tried my very, very best, each and every day. I can say that as NURTURE’s proud Mommy, I can do no better. And, neither can my child.

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