Of course I heard from everyone with an ounce of experience that becoming a mother would change my life. I was prepared for this in most of the big, important ways, but one of the things that’s surprised me is how being a mom has changed my life as a nerd.
First, I obviously don’t have 8+ hours a day to spend writing. That just ain’t gonna fly anymore. I was also never a writer who carried around a notebook – I took notes here and there, but never actually WROTE in a notebook. Now, that’s the easiest and/or only option I have. When you’ve got one arm pinned under a sleeping monster, straining to reach a nearby notebook is a lot easier than trying to escape and get your laptop. (In fact, as I write this – on my laptop – I have to keep distracting little hands from pulling out my power cord. And this post will take me approximately 8 times longer to write because I have to keep tossing her over my shoulder to look out the window at the dog, who I’ve just noticed is eating his poop… BRB.)
I also was never a huge phone app person. I’ve added at least 5 now, all related to being a mom or using baby gear, so in that little way I’m becoming a little more of a techie.
And you better believe I plan to pass along love of my fandoms to the little squirt. We’ve already binged the new She-Ra, and she at least stared at the transformation hair, so that’s a good start. I look forward to first viewings of Star Wars and Dr. Who, first readings of The Chronicles of Narnia, and teaching her to side with me over her dad about Hogwarts houses.
Something I didn’t expect was that, for the first time in my life, I’d be able to easily relate to other women. I grew up on a hunting preserve, writing science fiction – I’m just not wired to connect with most women. But with the shared experiences of childbirth, babies that just will not sleep, the inevitable poop explosions – suddenly I feel LESS like an outsider and more like one of the tribe. By creating a tiny human, I too have a non-nerdy thing to talk about that’s actually relatable.
BUT, at the same time, I’ve found that being a nerd AS a mom is a pretty common thing too. I stumbled upon a couple Facebook groups for nerdy parents, and that’s my new favorite use of any free minutes the mini-tyrant allows me. Nerdy memes related to parenting, nerdy discussions about our favorite nerdy things, and of course occasional parenting questions – it’s all great.
That’s not to say that I don’t miss being a more active part of my other favorite community, my author peeps. To those of you who’ve put up with my endless social media posts of baby pictures, please forgive, as it’s the only way to keep our friends and family up to date who live 2+ hours away. I promise I am reading your books and watching videos and generally lurking as a fan/friend even when I’m too exhausted to comment.
So, until the next time I have a minute free of screamed, nonsensical demands, here’s AI taking in Star Wars the only way she knows how…so far.