Single Mom Slice Of Life:
Mom’s Secret, Kids’ Secret…Secrets No More!
This is the story of how I found out how much my kids love me, how proud they are of me, and how humbled I am by it.
Ok, so I have a hobby. I write. Not just for Good Enough Mother, I write books. I wrote a book. I published a book. Well, if you want to be all technical about it, my son published my book because quite frankly, he believes in me more than I believe in myself.
I have, what I call my, “Why Did I Keep This?” box. The majority of the box is filled with stories. They were written (as my kids are fond of saying) looooong before there was an Internet. There are hand written pages, pages written on napkins, pages written on grid paper, typed on paper so old it has yellowed around the still super-white liquid paper marks. Oh, yes, I have been writing forever.
So, when a friend found out this passion of mine, she hounded me until the entire book had been written – prologue, epilogue, and 27 chapters in between. Then, I let it sit on my laptop for about nine months. One Saturday I found myself sitting, in the chair, staring at the computer screen in general; the button that said, “Click to Publish” specifically. You know those movies where people sit staring into the horizon until day fades until night? I did that!
Finally, Nick walked out, looked from me to the screen before he sighed, muttered, “This is just sad” and hit “Click to Publish.”
I won’t lie. I cursed. I screamed. I demanded, “Do you have any idea what you’ve done?”
With a shrug that only a 17-year-old can pull off effectively, he replied, “Yeah, I stepped up to the plate and swung.”
I tell you that to tell you this. Four months have passed since that November afternoon. Despite the fact that I just told the world of Good Enough Mother, I swore the boys to secrecy. A very select few know my pen name, know what I wrote, what I did, and are privately proud I am.
Of that select few, it’s my kids who are standing over my shoulder every night when we look up the sales reports. It’s my kids who ask me if there is another review. Before there were sales reports, they were the ones that helped pick out the pen name. Their input created the book’s cover. Their pats on the back both literally and figuratively have made me want to cry as much as the first five-star review did in a good way; and the first two star review did in a bad way.
Then, we went to dinner the other night with family that we hadn’t told yet. Suddenly, they ratted me out. They said the name, the title, and even though they haven’t read the book, knew enough to give an overall synopsis of it. I, of course, did what I could to downplay it all, including saying, “It’s no big deal – I’ve only sold a couple of copies.”
In a tone of voice I’ve never heard him use before, with a look in his eye usually reserved for video game premieres, my son raised his voice over mine and declared, “Yeah, only 800 copies, since the end of November!”
I was too dumfounded to do more than stare. I knew they cared, and I knew they supported me, but when they voiced their pride out loud in the middle of the restaurant, I started crying all over again.
I will never forget their first steps, their first words, their first sets of stitches, their first haircuts… and now, I will never forget the night they saw me as more than a mom, a laundry service, and a short order cook – they saw me as a person, a writer, someone to brag about.
So what about you guys? Any big reveals for GEM? Have you ever had a moment where your children’s pride in you took your breath away? Tell us!
More from GEM:
Wendy Syler Woodward has been a single parent for 10 years, with two boys ages 12 and 16. Originally from southern California, Wendy moved her family seven years ago to Phoenix where she manages a law firm for work, writes for fun, and this year returned to college for her B.A. Follow her on Twitter @WendySyler.