The name Mary has a great presence in our home and in our family, both immediate and extended. While yes it was the name of my Grandmother and Great Grandmother. The name has taken on several meanings in my life. First and foremost, the most common use is Oh Relax Mary!, meaning, relax your hot head or take a chill pill. At one of Paley’s rehearsals last week, a parent was not happy with some of the slang phrases our director liked to use. Sadly I put my foot in my mouth by commenting “don’t we all use it”. I won’t go into logistics but it reminded me of all the catch phrases our little family likes to use and for moment I thought about all those moments in public. Where other adults or parents might be casting judgement on us. Then I came to my senses and realized, I really don’t care about what other people think about my parenting.
In the first two years of Paley’s life, Clem and I were gung-ho on doing it all ourselves, never asking for help. Her poor grandparents never got a chance to babysit her as a baby or event as one year old. While we might have some regret about the path we choose, we don’t regret it completely. We learned so much from our experience and it built up our strength to douse our fears at being gay parents in world that casts so much judgement. Phrases like relax mary! are our way of poking fun of when we are so worked up or extremely stressed.
After the twins joined our little family, we were seasoned but of course we are still learning. For now we are just remind ourselves and others to RELAX MARY!