Gymnastics class. A place for moms and a few dads to sit in absolute quiet (except for the loud talker) and watch our children bend, flip and flop through a large window pane. It is an hour and a half each week where I can sit with my own thoughts (again except for the loud talker) and exhale. While sitting here I have found several types of people in this room. There is no judgement…ok, maybe a little towards the loud talker…there is a little judgment as I see moms and dads being moms and dads. Here they are in no particular order.
The Loud Talker. This is just what it sounds. This woman is amped up and eager to talk…to anybody….loudly. I know more about her life than I do my best friend. There are times she will make people jump when she starts conversing. She has two volumes. Loud and yelling. Along with the loud talker is the loud talker’s son. He too has two volumes. Loud and YELLING! They are right next to each other, in theory, but they speak as if they are miles away.
The Make Better choices Mom. This poor woman has her kids with her. Her children run all over the place. They climb, bump, jump and jostle the other people in the room. All this poor mom can do is say “make better choices.” Kid climbing under chairs…make a better choice. The kid throwing a fit because he can’t stuff his sock in his sister’s mouth… make a better choice. Same kid beating the window pane…make a better choice. Clearly, this child is incapable of making a better choice. Please step in before I start shooting spitballs back at him!
The business Mom. She is dressed to the nines. She has on a smart looking blazer and matching skirt. Three-inch heels. Full face of makeup and a computer on her lap. She is making good use of this time. I watch her as she toggles back and forth from tab to tab. Her fingers work as if independent from her body. Yet one thing about this mom…whenever her daughter comes to the window she somehow senses and looks up. She smiles and waves. Blows kisses. As soon as her daughter leaves she is back to work. Well done mom. Well done.
The I Could Have Been an Olympic Gymnast Mom. This Mom knows everything about gymnastics. She is critiquing every child like she will get an Olympic medal for it. “Oh, she should straighten her legs.” “Her arm is bent.” “She should lose five pounds to be a gymnast.” “The coach should do it the way I taught her.” The list goes on. Olympic mom needs to become the dump and run mom.
The Dump and Run Mom. This Mom is just as it sounds. Target is calling. She has an hour and a half to run the isles of Target. Truth be told this will be me in a few weeks. Christmas is coming. I can get some shopping done without a sidekick that wants EVERYTHING she lays her eyes on. Can I get an amen!
The Gamer Mom. She has no idea where she is. She does not look up from her phone. She is playing several games at once. It makes me dizzy to try and follow.
The Homeschool Mom. She has her bag of homeschool material and is planning her weeks to come. Her daughter is reading War and Peace quietly next to her. She has textbooks, portfolios and a jam-packed academic list. This mom makes motherhood look easy. Bravo, mom!
The Involved in Everything Mom. This poor mom runs from activity to activity with her children. Food is consumed in the car, served through a window. In her quest to provide her children with well-rounded activities she is forgetting one of the most important activities for childhood. Play! Simple play. Outside, unstructured play. Ok…this one I sound a little judgey here too, but Mom give yourself and your kids a break. Downtime is ok.
The Dad. This is a handful of men who have drawn the short straw and have to sit in a room full of women watching a room full of girls, flip, flop, and tumble. It is a far cry from the Hardware Store but good job dad for stepping up. Your daughter will remember the countless hours she saw your face through that window. Today you are driving her to gymnastics…before you know it you will be driving her to her wedding!
So there you have it. Gymnastics moms 101. It takes all kinds in this world. Whichever one you choose to be…be you doing it. Well except the loud talker. Don’t be her!