way to cut a mom down to size

So yesterday was pretty darn exciting. I got up extra early, got a headstart on all the kids’ morning routines for my husband, then left the apartment at 7 a.m. and caught a cab to 30 Rock. I arrived at the Today show set, had my hair and makeup done, then did an interview with the gorgeous and gracious Ann Curry, stood thisclose to Matt Lauer and Al Roker, and got escorted outside past the very posterboard-wielding throngs that had just watched me being interviewed (though I suppose they didn’t hear much of it). I was nervous before, but not during– I think I couldn’t believe it was really happening. 

I walked on air for much of the rest of the day, and was an extra fun and giggly mom all afternoon with the kids. After dinner, David said, “Do you guys want to see Mommy on TV?”

“I do!” Maggie shouted, and ran into the living room.
“Okay,” Connor said, with perhaps less enthusiasm.
“Not weawy,” said Seamus, deciding to hang out at the kitchen table.

After some more wheedling on our part, Seamus did come into the living room, but whined so much about it while I was still cue-ing up the interview that he was sent back to the kitchen. That was OK. Connor and Maggie were still excited to watch.

Finally, I came on. 

DADDY: There’s Mommy, guys!

They stared at the screen, devoid of emotion. After I say three words or so:

MAGGIE: Mommy, we watch Dora?
MOMMY: In a minute, honey! Let’s watch this.

Ten seconds pass.

MAGGIE: Mommy, we watch Dora now?
DADDY: Honey, watch Mommy on TV, isn’t it exciting?
MAGGIE: I fink I watch Dora now.

Five seconds pass.

CONNOR: Mom. How long is this going to BE?

So no worries. Any swelled head I might have gotten was quickly brought down to size by three unimpressed children. Now, if I had gone on Dora, that would have been cool. But that Tico is a hell of a gatekeeper.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

jhazard June 9, 2010 at 3:06 pm

Very exciting! Congrats. Plus Dr. Taylor offered a wonderfully simple reminder… your kids don't need perfection, all they need is a mother and father who love them. No wonder the woman is a professional.


Tara Brettholtz June 9, 2010 at 8:01 pm

Congratulations, Amy. You did a wonderful job!

Now, I'm sorry to have to bring this up, but I really take issue with the title that the Today Show gave the clip. "How to feel ok just being a mom"? That strikes me as terribly condescending. What is "just" being a mom? If the producers had actually read the book they'd probably know better. Motherhood isn't a vacation on the couch with a box of candy and the remote control.


Lucy June 10, 2010 at 4:18 am

How cool! Since I got to talk to you first in Winnetka, I feel like I scooped Ann Curry. šŸ™‚


Courtney June 10, 2010 at 3:16 pm

Very cool!
So I just had a thought, and a question for you. Do you think perhaps you feel/felt so much pressure to be the perfect mom because of where you live? NYC seems to be the most uber-ambitious of places, and I have friends that live there, and family, and they always seem much more stressed about being perfect in every way than anyone in my Midwestern city. I am a mom, too, and do feel pressure to be the yummy-mummy perfect Mom/Career Gal/Wife/Housekeeper/Friend, but I am guessing not as much as a person such as yourself, who is constantly bombarded with media images, stories, financial pressures, etc. of trying to be the perfect Manhattan Mother.


Amy June 10, 2010 at 6:27 pm

Tara- you certainly have a point there. I don't know where that silly "How to feel OK just being a mom" subtitle came from, but it wasn't from my book, that's for sure. "Just" being a mom is not something in my vocabulary.

Courtney- I always say that, like Nigel Tufnel's famous amp in Spinal Tap, New York City turns it up to 11. I do think these pressures are felt almost everywhere, now that I've gotten a chance to meet mothers all around the country… but New York City is its own kind of crazy, that's true!


Mom Greene June 10, 2010 at 8:41 pm

I believe the caption on the Today Show clip is"How to feel ok just being mom". I thought the emphasis was on the word "being", not the word "just". As in, trust your instincts.
Nana Greene


amy June 11, 2010 at 6:42 pm

Mom Greene- you are right! the Today show subtitle said "How to feel OK just being 'Mom.'" Which still has nothing to do with my book, or the interview, really, but it doesn't have that tricky "a" in there.

Just one comma added, though, and here's what the book really IS about:

"How to feel OK just being, Mom."


just one foot July 7, 2010 at 2:29 pm

So funny, I can see that happening so easily. Kids just aren't impressed with grown up stuff. They just want the name brand Apple Jacks and a good story before bed. (preferably Sandra Boynton) šŸ™‚

I write a weekly parenting column for two local papers and my kids are very UN-impressed. (even though, or maybe because, most of the stories are about them)

My nine year old, the only one who allows me to use his pictures with my column, has even started charging me for each week he appears in print. What ever happened to being ecstatic to 'see your picture in the paper'?

He's bleeding me dry with his contract negotiations.



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