Soon after my son was born, my first name changed to "Nicholas' mommy." I think it started with that first playgroup meeting. As we each walked in carrying our new babies (they were far too young to play, but it was still called a playgroup...hmmm), and diaper bags and assorted newborn paraphernalia, we were perhaps for the first time, somewhere as someone's mommy. It was that mommy badge that gained us admission to the group. So the identification made sense.
When Rachel was born less than two years later, I gained a longer name..."Hi, I'm Nicholas' and Rachel's mommy." Two in diapers and car seats meant a two part name.
Later, as they became more independent and Catherine joined the family, I began to be more selective. So one moment, I was Nicholas' mommy, a second later, Rachel's mommy, and the next Catherine's mommy. It all depended on who was in front of me -- or rather who was hanging off my arm or wrapped around my leg.
This transformation happened to me, an independent woman with a name and identity, and even a CV, without me even being aware. It just WAS.
While the thought of changing my surname at marriage had sent me into terror (I never did do it), changing from the name I knew to someone's mommy never bothered me. I delighted in the role. So the name was a badge of honor.
But now that my youngest is 10, I've begun to wonder...after she is grown, who will I be? How will I adapt after so many years of being known as someone's mommy?
Those of you who have faced this...any thoughts?
A footnote: When I was walking into my daughter's aftercare last night, after writing this post, one of her classmates was coming out with his mom. He saw me, and gave me a cheerful "Hi Catherine's mommy!" Guess it really is too soon to worry about what happens after!