Confessions of My Younger Self

A couple of weeks ago my computer was about to go into hard drive failure. With the threat of losing all my data (and photos!) looming large, I went into panic mode. Frantically searching through any documents that were imperative to copy, the title of one jumped out at me – “vomitingtracker.xls”.

Say what, now?

Upon opening the spreadsheet (and marveling that I wrote it), I was immediately transported back to my days as a young, first-time mom. The days of documenting absolutely everything – food, sleep, weight. You name it, I had a spreadsheet for it.

Now, to be fair, the kid CLEARLY had a puking problem so perhaps it was justified. But, man, the level of detail here…I mean, just how DOES one both projectile vomit and “regular” vomit at the same time, as I documented on 2/21?

And “Vomited after getting head stuck in luggage at the store”? Well, that’s a WHOLE other blog post LOL.

Memories came flooding back of my parenting style with our first baby…scrubbing down every inch of the grocery cart with anti-bacterial wipes, serving her organic food only, reading every parenting book out there, fleeing the playground upon spotting a child with a runny nose…you get the picture.

Fast forward 20 years and three kids later, suffice it to say my parenting style is a bit more “chill” (that’s code for I’m a lot older and really, really tired).


When my middle child was about 8 years old, he was playing outside with some friends and ran into a parked car in front of our house. He came into the house crying, with blood gushing from his eyebrow. New mom me would have completely freaked out but I was now a more experienced, more relaxed, mom of three.

Yes, I was so proud of how calm I remained as I cleaned the wound, stuck a band-aid on it, and sent him back outside to play. Not so proud later on that night when it turned out that the kid needed 12 STITCHES, NOT a Spiderman band-aid. Oops.


3rd kid: “Can I have another cookie?”

Me: “You’ve already had two. No.”

Her: “If I eat one grape, can I have a cookie?”

Me: “Speaking of grapes, when was the last time you even had a fruit or a vegetable? Seriously, you eat too much junk. Go eat 5 grapes.”

Her: “Then can I have a cookie?”

Me: “No!” Pause. “Ok, fine, eat 8 grapes and you can have a cookie.”

Her: “Forget it. I hate grapes.”

Mind you, this conversation took place at 9:00am. My younger self would have been APPALLED.

Getting back to the vomiting chart…I kept thinking about it, and I didn’t know why I couldn’t get it off my mind. But I think I may have figured it out. What was so clear, in that ridiculous spreadsheet, is how much control and knowledge I had over this child’s life. It was so easy to know every single thing she ate, every place she had been, every time she was sick.

And now that little puking baby is a 22-year-old college graduate living in a big city. And today, I don’t know what she ate for breakfast, and I don’t know exactly where she is every minute of the day.

But as hard as I thought it was back then, I would give anything to only have to worry about her getting germs from the shopping cart again.

But such is the life of a parent, right? From the minute our babies are born, we worry about one thing or another. And as our children grow and change, our worries never disappear, they just change right along with them.

I wish I could’ve told my younger self a few things, told her to lighten up, told her not to sweat the small stuff. But honestly, it wouldn’t have mattered. Because, really, I think that wisdom lies in the journey. And each of our journey’s are unique. I, for one, am so grateful for mine.

So here’s to ALL the types of mothers out there…the young moms, the old moms, the overprotective moms, the chill moms. May the wonders outweigh the worries for you on the incredible ride that is parenthood.


If you enjoyed this post, check out: “Just a Little More Time”, which is the actually the article that launched I Might Be Funny!