How old are you in MomYears? (or: how I became the mother of 2.45 elephants)

OK, so for some reason a long time ago someone decided that there were 7 dog years in a human year. So by the time your dog reaches one human year old, he’s really 7 dog years old. It makes sense, dogs reach puberty earlier than humans and if a dog lives to be 18 it’s just as much of a treat as a human who makes it to 126. A year in a child’s life is a much bigger deal than a year in the life of an adult (we’re talking humans now). It’s not that a human year isn’t long enough, it’s just that SO MUCH HAPPENS in a child’s life that when you have more than one kid, I’m pretty sure you deserve to count each one of their years as your own.

I believe that a mom of one year old twins should get some street cred for having parented for 2 concurrent years.

I think every mom reading this should add up the ages of all of their children right now and figure out how old they are in mom years. Just so you know, that makes me 87 momyears old.

87 is huge.

I mean, it would explain a lot of my “feeling like I’m 100 years old” and it gives moms-of-many some perspective, I mean with 6 kids I’m aging at a momyear rate that’s almost as fast as a dog.

There’s some credibility built in there too, like it’s one thing having raised teenagers, but in momteenyears (assuming that starts at 13) I have 17 years. 17 years of parenting teenagers. If you factor in the average number of mood swings per day, then every teen year should count as 4, which would increase exponentially when they’re in the same room as another teen so that would grant me an extra 68 years of credibility.

But let’s skip that part.

Counting your momyears is a quick little ego boost that kind of reminds you what a badass you are for all the years you’ve put into all of your kids.

If toddlerhood lasts from age 2-5, (so 3 years) then I have 18 years of toddelermomyears under my belt. 18 Years with a toddler would probably drive someone insane, but look at me, I’m a survivor.

Sort of, I mean, PTSD is always a thing. I can’t clean up without singing the barney clean up song, I can’t sit in a lobby without singing the patiently waiting song and I still spill coffee on my shirt all the time, but wouldn’t you expect 18 years of toddlers to have some kind of lasting effect on a person. It’s a wonder I don’t spill cheerios all over the driver’s seat and stick weird things in my ears.

What are the other benefits of counting in mom years? I like this, I think it should be a thing. So much of a thing that when moms meet each other, it becomes part of the introduction, like “Hi, I’m Lisa and I’m 87 momyears old.”

It’s so much more relevant than saying “I have 6 girls” that just sounds a little like crazy talk and sometimes people get caught up on the scientific odds of having all one sex which isn’t really consequential (as if I would know the difference) except that it means several years of pink laundry, but 87 concurrent years of parenting sends an entirely different message that still might sound like crazy talk, but it packs a punch that deserves to be packed. Or punched. Each year counts. For every kid. And it should.

And when new moms introduce themselves as “Hi, I’m Lucy and I am 3 momyears old” they should be treated with the tenderness we’d treat any toddler, right? Or better yet when moms try giving one another unsolicited advice, the momyear factor could be a marker for credibility.

As an 87 year old mom, I might be more likely to listen to the advice of someone who was 50+ mom years than I would if she were only 12 momyears. And when I tell expectant moms “Stay hydrated” they’d totally listen because obviously my 87 momyears mean that I know my shit, right?

See there’s another possibility. We count pregnancy in months, right? One human pregnancy is about 10 lunar months, 9 calendar months, so I’ve had 60 lunar months of pregnancy. 54 calendar months. Elephants gestate about 22 months. Oh my gawd, I’m the mother of 2.45 elephants.

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