Friday, November 9, 2012

No 'Keeping Up With the Fezziwigs' from this mom

Okay, I’m putting it in writing before I have a chance to become insufferable: I will not become a stage mom. You have my word on it.

Never mind that I was as excited as my 10-year-old daughter when she found out she got a part in the upcoming production of “A Christmas Carol.” Never mind that the four-day waiting period to hear if she had made the cast was completely unnerving (and she was a little stressed too).

No, I am completely in control and refuse to become another clichéd stage mom, a la the mothers of Honey Boo Boo or the Kardashians. I pinky swear.

And just to ensure that I will not go down that dark path, I have come up with the following Rules to Keep Me from the Slippery Slope that is Stage Momdom (or RTKMFTSSTISM for short).

• I promise that I will not wear a t-shirt that reads “My daughter totally rocks Act 1, Scenes 2, 4, and 7.” In fact, I will wear it only as pajamas from here on in (or maybe under another shirt on performance nights, like Superman).

• I promise that I will not start a standing ovation mid-scene immediately after my daughter delivers her one line in Act 1, Scene 7. However, if YOU can’t help but stand and applaud, I will gladly join you.

• I promise that I will not say my daughter’s line aloud with her while she’s on stage and I’m in the audience. Still, mouthing the line with her is not off the table.

• I promise that I will continue to keep it real by calling her by her given name instead of referring to her as Fezziwig Daughter No. 2 for the next three months of rehearsals.

• I promise that I will allow her to speak in her usual voice at home. However, I think it’s entirely normal to require the entire family to speak in British accents on rehearsal days. I’m confident that my family will happily get on board with this plan.

• I promise that if this acting thing works out, I will never ever let my daughter be on any Disney show whatsoever. I think we’ve seen how most of those careers shake out (I’m looking at you Ms. Lohan).

• I promise that I will not make any odd requests for my daughter’s dressing room prior to performances, such as Perrier water at room temperature or M&Ms with the shells peeled.

Of course I’m joking (kind of) but let’s be real here. It’s pretty darn hard as a parent to NOT get excited when you see your child doing something he or she loves. From her first steps, to her first ballet recital, she really is the best thing since sliced bread. From his first word (Dada, of course!), to his first karate kick, he is the coolest kid you’ve ever met.

So in essence, we all star in our own little plays that we call “life.” And I plan on applauding the loudest for the entirety of my children’s lives.


Eileen Burmeister is a freelance writer who lives in Winchester, Ore. She can be reached at or you can follow her on Twitter at EBurmeister.

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