Gladtobemom is not just an Avatar name for me; it is a moniker I acquired years ago. This came about because of my unsinkable enjoyment of motherhood in defiance of people who seemed to think I should be resentful.
I was a smart girl that received many opportunities because of my abilities–a fortunate young lady, indeed. This led to a lot of people that seemed to think they had some sort of stake in me reaching their notion of my potential.
It was a very rude surprise to those “stakeholders” in my life that I wanted to be a wife and mother. In fact, I wanted to be a real M.O.M (mother of many). When I married and became pregnant, I was suddenly a failure. The disapproval was really nasty.
As my belly grew, so did the criticism. I was supposed to be resentful and regretful. I was supposed to be sad. I was not sad at all, I was glad. That made them really mad. My own mother told me that pregnancy was a parasite sucking the life out of a woman–life she’d never get back.
I had one friend that was a happy mother. When we were shopping in the university’s book store, we saw these really huge windbreaker jackets. They were HUGE, big enough to hold my belly no matter how big it grew, and long enough to sit on.
I joked that I should get “Still in school” put on the back. We agreed that it seemed very out of fashion to be glad to be mom. She said I should get Glad to Be Mom on the back of my jacket. The only way it would fit was to get GladtobeMom as one big word.
I wore that jacket often, I could wear it over my bag in the rain. I could put my baby in a front pack and still snap it to keep us warm. It was brightly colored, so it even made it easy for the kids to find me when they got older.
When I started tiptoeing out onto the internet as myself (instead of the professional engineering me), it seemed only natural to be Gladtobemom. So . . . that became the online me. I joined forums and always seemed to pick it as my name. So . . . If you want to know if a “Gladtobemom” out there on the web is me, just ask and I’ll tell you if that is me.
Even after nearly 30 years, I am, and always will be, Glad to be Mom.