Who's your mama?

I was at my daughter's softball game coaching third base when an old friend of mine from college arrived. Her daughter was playing for the other team which was beating ours handily. It hadn't been my best day. I was short on sleep, sorry to be out in the rain, and generally feeling put upon. I'd growled at my husband for daring to confirm the day's schedule. I'd howled at my kids for getting their gear together too slowly. I was sure it must be time for bed, and it was only 6 o'clock.

When I went over to say hi, she whispered, "I haven't gotten a chance to tell you my news." Well, this is a woman who has had more news in her day than most, so I hesitated. She asked, "What other kind of news do we have at our age?" Now, me, I'm thinking divorce, death in the family, car accident; can you tell I was raised by a big fan of Murphy's Laws?

It turns out she's pregnant. Not only that, but she's going to skip all those pesky doctor's appointments and just do a home birth. In the meantime she'll eat her raw food, meditate every day, and probably find some way to save the planet in time for her child's arrival. She's no soccer mom: she's a yoga mama. She just started her second studio to rave reviews and will probably om instead of shriek during the delivery. Meanwhile I haven't exercised in days and just ate lukewarm Rice-a-Roni out of a soggy paper cup.

I mumbled, "Good for you!" and slunk back to my side of the field, claiming the need to return to my post even though our team was in the field. The truth of it is that I'm jealous. I'll be clear. I'm not jealous that she's pregnant. I have two kids and two hands and that's that. Rather, I'm jealous of her attitude; this woman radiates sunshine and light and moves through life like Tinkerbell. On a good day I love her like the sister I don't have, and on a bad day, when I'm cursing my life, I want to run her down with an SUV (that I don't have either).

As the game went on and so did the drizzle, my daughter came over and wrapped herself in the car blanket with me. She cooed, "I love to snuggle with you. That makes it a good day." My heart, until this moment squeezed into some far, dark corner of my ribcage by the green worm of envy, expanded and warmed to huge proportions. Yup, it was just like the Grinch.

So I'm a snuggle mama, and that works for me.

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