Thursday, May 25, 2006

My Own Worst Enemy

This morning Little Brother and I went to Storytime at a local library. We don't have a library here in town, so we were taking advantage of a drop-in Storytime offered at a tiny, charming library in an equally tiny, charming town.

Every time we go there Little Brother has a wonderful time. The two librarians who take turns hosting the Storytime are fantastic. There are stories (read aloud, or just storytelling), finger plays, and "action songs." When it's over the children may all color a picture related to the day's story.

Every time we go there, SFO Mom is transported back to 6th grade. I realize just how immature I am and how mentally snarky I can be. While Little Brother is up front belting out "Johnny Works with One Hammer" and "Wheels on the Bus" I am standing in the back comparing myself to all the other Storytime Mommies. This one has a tiny infant and has lost all her "baby weight"--Little Brother is over 4 and my waistline is stubbornly refusing to shrink. That one and her three well-groomed children have matching GAP tops--Little Brother has a buzz cut so I don't have to comb his hair in the mornings, and is wearing handmedowns from the Boy Next Door. These mommies arrived pushing their jogging strollers or Super Fashionable Thousand-Dollar Designer Strollers or driving luxury cars--we drove up in our Chevrolet SUV-Wannabe Minivan with the Catholic School logo stickers and the dusty windshield. Those mommies sit up front with their children in their laps and sing the songs--Little Brother does not believe in sitting on laps at Storytime (it's a struggle to get him to sit anywhere at Storytime). All of them are Better Than Me.

The obvious answer is not to go to Storytime anymore, but Little Brother really loves it. And we learn some good songs and finger-play games there. I'm well aware that the grass is not always greener, that my life would not be perfect if I had perfect hair, the perfect wardrobe, the perfect house in that charming town, the perfect car, and perfect children. So why is it that week after week, I look at those Storytime Mommies and think they're so perfect?

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