A couple of questions before we begin:
First, how many of us adults have lived with, or are living with, their parents?
(This is where I sheepishly grimace and do the wiggle-finger wave.) Meeeee!
Second, anybody here ever watch a show called The Big Bang Theory? (We kind of relate because we have a budding genius in the family.)
If you watch it too, you might be familiar with a strange little character called Howard Wolowitz. If not, let me introduce you.
This is Howard.
He lives with his mother. We never see his mother. We just hear her. And she's loud. Raspy. Harsh, and really, really irritating. She yells when his "little friends" are over for a "play date." She yells to ask what they're doing. She yells to ask if they want cookies. She yells. He is 27 going on eight. He rolls his eyes, yells back, and looks irritated.
Unlike poor How-AHHHD my mother is not irritating. Sure, she can't quit mothering, but I assure that if I, at the age of 61, end up with one of my adult children and the grandchildren (not to mention the spouse and house-pets) living in my house with me, you can bet I'll be mothering them all too.
We mothers can't help it. It's like a switch gets flipped the first time we hold our children and that switch can never, ever be turned off again. I really think my mom's doing quite well, considering. She'll start into one of my teenagers on the merits of cough syrup or the pressing urgency of homework, then stop, turn her head, grin, and announce, "I'm not your mother!"
This approach seems to be working. Example:
The other evening, Bucky yelled, "Mom!"
And because that switch never shuts off, and also because Grandma is really good at her job, before I opened my mouth she'd already replied.
So Bucky, the quick witted little smartass, came back instantly with "You're not my mother!"
Sometimes we accuse her of overfunctioning, but she has proven that without her, there is no functioning. I suspect she enjoys being She Who Runs The Place, even if it is a lot of work. It would be tempting to just let her run my life... I mean, she's good at it and it would be so easy. But I've never been good at being...run. Besides, I moved out at age 20 and have had a few years worth of running my own place. Not as well, maybe. But I managed to get two babies to the teenage years without any catastrophic accidents or extreme neglect!
Yesterday morning, I had to take my truck over to the garage. Mom followed me with her car, since I would rather not walk down the highway back to the farm. After parking the truck, I headed over to her car before going to the office. I had to drop off a bag in the car. It was raining and miserable out and I was motoring, but my extremely on-the-ball mother already had her window down, cold rain lashing at her face, as she yelled across the parking lot, "DON'T FORGET TO TELL THEM YOUR LEFT HEADLIGHT IS OUT!"
I yelled back, "YEAH I'M GONNA!"
Well by the time I opened the passenger door to throw the bag in the car, she was already laughing.
"I sound like Howard's mother!"
So yeah, we have a pretty good sense of humour. All the way home we snorted and giggled about HOWAHHHHHD!
In the evening, she drove me back to the garage to pay for the truck and bring it home. We got home about the same time, and as soon as I got out of the truck she was standing there beside her car, grinning, and yelled...
"TELL YA LITTLE FRIENDS YA GOT YA HEADLIGHT FIXED!!!!"
And so, little friends, I would like to tell you that both the headlights in my truck are working.
(How did I function without her?)