I’ve been going to story hour ever since Patrick was about 3 months old. Now that he is coming up on a year old, I’ve really been thinking about how many milestones he and his Story Hour Mates have gone through together. They’ve rolled over, sat up, crawled, and are now starting to walk and talk. But also I’ve been thinking about how I have managed to keep my personal life under the radar. Like completely. And I’m not even trying.
So week in and week out, as it should be, it’s all about Patrick. He goes in, does his thing. Crawls, explores, laughs at stories and visits with friends. All of us mothers just sit back and let the kids do their thing. We intervene if one of our kids start getting into the Story Lady’s things, but usually it’s just kind of a kid free-for-all.
We might talk about the kids, but not once has anyone asked my name or what I or my husband do for a living. Is it extreme anti-social socializing. And not that everyone isn’t very friendly, they are. Everyone is VERY nice. It’s all just very surface-ey. I’m new to this, so I don’t know if there is some sort of Story Hour Etiquette or something. We just go in, play and visit, and bounce.
It’s gotten to the point where I really want to just go around the room and have everyone introduce themselves. There are a couple of Story Moms who are seriously like friends to me. It’s laughable, really. So much time has gone by now…. it’s sort of uncomfortable. “Um, I know we’ve been talking for 9 months, but what’s your name?” If I ever ran into one of them at a store or something, and introductions were in order, I’d have nothin’.
At the same time, it’s kind of nice having complete anonymity. None of these people can size me up because they have nothing to go on. At all. They just know I’m Patrick’s mom. They have no idea that I rock it out with a band- sing, play the piano…. have recording sessions… all these things that would shape their opinion of me. They are getting Music-Free Megan. It’s interesting, indeed. That is usually the first thing people know about me. It’s like a huge part of my personality is missing from this entire equation. In so many situations, the people who know this angle of my life will adjust so much around it, especially in group settings. It’s really too much to deal with. And really, this is Patrick’s time. I just sing quietly along with the others. To them, I’m just a nice mommy who probably stays at home with her baby.
I have to be careful during the music portion of the hour, though. I found myself doing polyrhythms with the maracas over “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” the other day. I think one of the nannies is onto me. I better dumb it down if I want to stay under the radar. (“1….. 3….. 1….. 3…..”)
Maybe Story Hour is a blessing for all the mommies, and why it is the way it is. Maybe this is the one hour of the week when we can all escape from our duties, whatever they may be, and just…… BE.