I believe I have hit upon the reason mom’s refer to themselves in the third person. For example:
“Mommy is busy right now honey, please wait until I am done.”
“No honey, Mommy can’t turn the t.v. up right now, Mommy is in the shower.”
“Mommy is still in the shower honey, I can’t get to the remote right now! Please wait until I am out of the shower!!”
It is in part do to the interaction with the infant, but I think it is really because mommies have three personalities, therefore Mommy is personality number three, the third person.
My first person is a young woman who loves to go dancing, stay up until dawn, smoke cigarettes and toss back one too many tequila shots. Sadly, she was put into a coma about 6 years and 9 months ago, so the chances of anyone seeing her again are slim. However, she occasionally invades my consciousness with a sweet memory and the smell of freedom, often when I am driving in the rain and turn the music up a little louder than I should.
My second person is a serious lawyer ready and able to save the world. She is dedicated, tireless, and armed with the tools needed to wreak havoc on opposing council. She wears sexy yet serious business suits and sensible heels. She is witty at cocktail parties and political functions, and still amazes her husband with her intellectual prowess and social capabilities.
My third person is a mom. She is always there for tears, problem solving, lunch making, real and imagined insults, boo boo kisses, and upset tummies. She cleans the house, buys the groceries, prepares the food. She showers at night because she is usually showered in baby spit up several times during the day. She is a napkin, a washcloth, and more. She doesn’t sleep, hasn’t worn make-up in months, and lost her ability to put together a decent outfit ages ago. She is an expert in getting smiles and giggles, diffusing kiddo stress and consternation, and removing stains from laundry. She can change a really messy diaper in under three minutes with only three or four wipes.
However, she is the hardest personality to acknowledge and accept. She is much more disheveled than the other two parts of me, much more emotional, and seemingly less capable, though really, she is just dealing with more. After all, how often does a lawyer have to handle complex billing negotiations with a screaming baby vomiting on their suit? How many young and carefree women have to schlep children through the grocery store?
Anyway, the reason I think I refer to this third personality in third person is simple, it places distance between the sleepless, pale, disheveled mad woman in the mirror and myself. After all, carefree woman and slick lawyer are rarely interrupted in the shower by anyone for any reason, much less a six year old needing help with the television.
I really am still the young carefree woman and the slick lawyer. They are just currently hidden behind a river of baby spit up and burp cloths. Until I can see them again, or at least small parts of them, I will likely still continue to refer to the rest of me, that tired, spit up covered woman, in the third person.