Party of Three

Alex during the car ride home after we dropped Ashley off at camp. Doesn't he look like he knows he has our completely undivided attention now?

There was a seismic shift in our family dynamic this weekend: We dropped Ashley off at camp. No teenager for seven whole weeks? Now my little man is really going to know the sun rises and sets on his smiling face. This could be dangerous.

Come to think of it, he must already feel that level of undivided attention because he somehow justifies giving me the old shaft when it comes to saying my name. Sure, he looks at me when someone says, “Where’s Mama?”, but he rarely calls me Mama, Mommy, Mom, or even Ma. What gives? He says, “Elmo! Elmo!” every time he sees the rock G-d of children’s toys, “Beau” when he encounters my Mom’s dog, “kitty” while he pets our cat, and screams “Dada! Dada!” when he hears my husband return home from work. As for me–his 24-hour-a-day caregiver who has sacrificed her body, sleep, career, regular manicures, and dangly earrings to be at his beck and call–I only get the occasional “Mom” or “Mama.”

Freaking Elmo...What did you do to hear your name all of the time??

I’ve been waiting 38 years to be called “Mommy” on a regular basis. I’d settle for even hearing a half-hearted “Ma” every day. Don’t you think I’ve paid my dues? Are there any other Mommies out there who are slightly jealous that Elmo gets more verbal love than they do?

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