Lawnmower Mom

Me no need man!

By Elizabeth Thompson
I have a confession to make...I love mowing the lawn. No, "mowing the lawn" is not some weird Mantra-type sexual position. I mean it literally -- I love cutting the grass! We have a rather large piece of property with a nicely sized front yard and a backyard that is 300+ feet deep, as well as a sled-worthy hill between us and a neighbor. She also mows the lawn -- at 95 years of age! In fact, our neighbor on the opposite side also mows her lawn. Drive down our street on any given April through October day and chances are one of us mamas is out there packing turf. I don't consider mowing the lawn a chore. Laundry, cleaning, cooking -- now, that's a chore. And living with four children creates a whole lot of dirty clothes, a sticky house and makes cooking a dirty word. Nope, I can't wait to get out there and rev my estrogen levels right along with my 4.5 horsepower fossil-fuel-burning hunk of love. Now that gets me hot. No one -- and I mean no one -- messes with me and my lawn mower, not even my hubby. There are several reasons why that task is mine, and why I make it a point to rendezvous with the lawn mower more than twice a month:
  1. I get the children out of the house with me (theoretically, avoiding any further trashing that has, no doubt, occurred indoors).
  2. I get a major workout! I didn't have to pay for it, didn't buy clothes for it, didn't sign a membership contract for it, don't have to drive to get to it, don't feel guilty if I skip doing it for two weeks and most of all, don't have to be in a room full of gym bunnies!
  3. It is a great stress reliever! Rather than feel the need to beat the crap out of the kids, I kick some Kentucky Blue turf instead!
  4. I also find myself feeling lulled into a sense of peace and harmony by the white noise produced by the lawnmower, sort of making use of a combination of yoga and active meditation techniques.
  5. Although this probably falls under #3, I can curse (out loud) the heck out of anyone has just about gotten on my last nerve and without confrontation. I love that!
  6. Most of all, my children see that Mommy -- a woman -- can easily take on a physically demanding chore like cutting the grass, and enjoy it! I am woman and I am strong! Unless, of course, there is that occasional field mouse that happens to run in front of the lawn mower..."Eeeekkkk! I hate mice! Eeewww, I hope I didn't run it over! Oh gross! It did! No, you can't touch it! Leave it there and Daddy will clean it up when he gets home."
Truth is I think that my four children like the fact they can run along side and taunt me to their little hearts content unnoticed, unheard, and usually without reprimand. Some examples of a few of their favorite jeers are: "She can't hear us! Watch this... Hey Mom, your face is all yucky red!" "Hey Mom, your meatloaf stinks!" "Hey Mom, your boobies are shaking!" And they yuck it up until I turn my beloved Murray toward them and become "Lawnmower Mom" and chase them in these cute little zig-zaggy type patterns. Not my husband's most favorite look for our yard I must say. Today's lawn mowing session was very productive and I managed to take out both the front and back yards, sorting out a lot of issues in between:
  1. Screw the laundry!
  2. Burned off those Oreo cookies from this morning.
  3. Saved the baby's butt, again.
  4. Oooommm. Oooommm.
  5. Me Woman! Me No Need Man!
  6. If he/she thinks he/she can talk to me like that...well then he/she can just go take a blankety-blank-blank long walk off a blankety-blank-blank short pier!
So, you see, working the mower is so much more than an exercise in superior lawn care. For this wiped out old mom it is a labor of love -- mind, body and soul.

Elizabeth is a stay-at-home Mom (an oxymoron, really, since she is found in her minivan running errands more than she's at home) and enjoys writing about the trials and tribulations of raising 4 children, an rambunctious lab and killer dust bunnies. She has essays published with Nurturing Magazine, waxes poetic on her blog, This Full House, and newly launched family blog project, This Full House Kids, where the kids are given permission to "talk back." Liz is also a contributing writer to the SV Moms sister site, New Jersey Moms Blog and review blogger for the Parent Bloggers Network, where she enjoys writing about the stuff she likes, or hasn't managed to break, yet.

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"Assert your right to make a few mistakes. If people can't accept your imperfections, that's their fault." -- Dr. David M. Burns