A Prayer for All Mothers, by Tina Fey

One of the blogs I frequently read is the New Orleans Mom Blog, which is a great blog put together by some New Orleans moms and they write about all kinds of topics that us moms are interested in.   Some of their posts are about babies, kids, child-friendly activities, etc. but some of them are about cooking, cleaning, traveling, and other non-child related topics that moms still are interested in.  Some of them are really only relevant if you live in New Orleans and some of them are universally relevant for all moms.  Most of the women who post on the New Orleans Mom Blog also have their own personal blogs, and I’ve gotten into reading some of those as well.  (One of them is written by Courtney, who leads the La Leche League Meetings I go to every month.)  One of them is Mrs. Mommy: Product Blogger.  She blogs about different products that moms might be interested in.  Well one of her recent posts was not about a product at all… but was a little something that Tina Fey wrote for her own daughter.  It reminded me a great deal of this thing I saw on Facebook:

  • At 6 years old, “Mommy, I love you.”
  • At 10 years old, “Mom, whatever.”
  • At 16, “My mom is so annoying.”
  • At 18, “I wanna leave this house.”
  • At 25,” Mom, you were right.”
  • At 30, “I wanna go to Mom’s house.”
  • At 50,” I don’t wanna lose my mom.”
  • At 70, “I would give up Everything for my Mom to be here with me.”

I really enjoyed reading it–I LOL’d right here at my desk at work while I was reading it, and at the end I just about had some tears rolling down my cheeks.


So here it is–Tina Fey’s “A Prayer for All Mothers”:

“First, Lord: No tattoos.  May neither Chinese symbol for truth nor Winnie-the-Pooh holding the FSU logo stain her tender haunches.

May she be Beautiful but not Damaged, for it’s the Damage that draws the creepy soccer coach’s eye, not the Beauty.

When the Crystal Meth is offered, May she remember the parents who cut her grapes in half And stick with Beer.

Guide her, protect her

When crossing the street, stepping onto boats, swimming in the ocean, swimming in pools, walking near pools, standing on the subway platform, crossing 86th Street, stepping off of boats, using mall restrooms, getting on and off escalators, driving on country roads while arguing, leaning on large windows, walking in parking lots, riding Ferris wheels, roller-coaster, log flumes, or anything called “Hell Drop,” “Tower of Torture,” or “The Death Spiral Rock N’ Zero G Roll featuring Aerosmith,” and standing on any kind of balcony ever, anywhere, at any age.

Lead her away from Acting but not all the way to Finance.  Something where she can make her own hours but still feel intellectually fulfilled and get outside sometimes And not have to wear high heels.

What would that be, Lord?  Architecture?  Midwifery?  Golf course design?  I’m asking You, because if I knew, I’d be doing it, You dammit.

May she play the Drums to the fiery rhythm of her Own Heart with the sinewy strength of her Own Arms, so she need Not Lie With Drummers.

Grant her a Rough Patch from twelve to seventeen.  Let her draw horses and be interested in Barbies for much too long, For childhood is short–a Tiger Flower blooming Magenta for one day–And adulthood is long and dry-humping in cars will wait.

O Lord, break the Internet forever, that she may be spared the misspelled invective of her peers And the online marketing campaign for Rape Hostel V: Girls Just Wanna Get Stabbed.

And when she one day turns on me and calls me a Bitch in front of  Hollister, Give me the strength, Lord, to yank her directly into a cab in front of her friends, For I will not have that Shit.  I will not have it.

And should she choose to be a Mother one day, be my eyes, Lord, that I may see her, lying on a blanket on the floor at 4:50 A.M., all-at-once exhausted, bored, and in love with the little creature whose poop is leaking up its back.  “My mother did this for me once,” she will realize as she cleans feces off her baby’s neck.  “My mother did this for me.”  And the delayed gratitude will wash over her as it does each generation and she will make a Mental Note to call me.  And she will forget.  But I’ll know, because I peeped it with Your God eyes.”


3 thoughts on “A Prayer for All Mothers, by Tina Fey

  1. Anna,

    So glad that you liked the poem and thank you for the mention! I must admit that I LOL’ed as well.

    It was also nice to “meet” you at the La Leche League last night. I truly related to your example of initially struggling to find balance with feeding your baby girl and prepping dinner. Definitely a struggle in our house as well…..it still is!

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