My So-Called Double Life
I drive slowly down my sleepy suburban street and pull into my driveway. Stepping out of the car, I close my car door as quietly as possible and cringe when the car lets out a little "beep" as I lock it with the remote. It's warm night. I notice some of my neighbors have their bedroom windows cracked open. I slip off my shoes and pad down my walkway, not wanting to wake anyone with the clop clop clop of my platform heels. It's 1am. All of my neighbors have jobs that start early, whether in the home or out. Plus it's a small town. People will be wondering where I've been, till all hours of the night, without my husband.
My ninja skills are even more crucial once I enter the house. The dogs' tails are thump, thump, thumping against their crates as I hang up my keys, but I don't dare say hello or they'll wake up the whole house with their enthusiastic hellos. I put away my purse and grab a baby bottle and powdered formula for the baby's late night snack. Then I tip-toe up the stairs, getting undressed and dressed in the dark so as not to wake anyone. Sliding into bed like a thief, I lay awake and go over the evening in my head, reliving the best parts. How I toyed with them. How I gave them exactly what they needed. And how good it felt when I had them in the palm of my hand. By the third joke they were mine. It was a good night at Broadway Comedy Club.
I'm a momic. A mom and a comic. Responsibilities include making breakfast, packing lunches, doing laundry, changing diapers, writing jokes, helping with homework, doing dishes, wiping mostly - but not exclusively -noses, taking out the garbage, driving to sports and music lessons, making dinner, memorizing jokes while rocking baby to sleep, driving to clubs, calling babysitters, telling jokes, driving home, paying babysitters, getting ready for bed without waking up sleeping children, give bottle to the baby at 2am, wake up in the morning and do it all again.
Comedy is like any other industry for working moms. We have to skip important networking events because the babysitter cancelled. We turn down out-of-town gigs because we're breast-feeding. We miss important auditions because someone needed stitches. But instead of seeing someone else get the coveted corner office, we see the younger comic who started in comedy five years after we did get top billing on an NBC sitcom. This can be tough to take sometimes. But then I remind myself of what I have - three beautiful kids. And I wouldn't trade them for all the studio audiences in the world.
I think we all, as moms, have many facets of ourselves that we bring out depending on the situation. What's yours?
**Jennifer Love Hewitt plays Riley Parks, a single mother, living in a small Texas town and leading a shocking double life in the new original series "The Client List." Airs Sundays at 10/9c on Lifetime.
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