Mommy brain down the drain

By: Julie M Green grad

I have this theory about the phenomenon known as mommy brain. When my son was conceived, not only did he get half my genetic makeup (lucky, lucky boy), he also stole more than his fair share of my precious brain cells too.  As does Miss Mary Jane when you spend a little too much time in the lady’s company. Little did I know these cells would never replenish themselves. Ever.

And much like the stoner in his middle age…
The havoc motherhood has wreaked on my brain is the lasting kind. I’m convinced I used to be somewhat intelligent. Or at least somewhat more intelligent than I am today. Somewhere around here there is a scrap of paper, signed by some Dean or Chancellor, that says so… But then, lots of people have similar scraps of paper, so I guess it doesn’t prove much. And now that my son is well into his third year, I can no longer blame sleep deprivation for my becoming the third spoke in the Dumb & Dumber reel.

Where is my mind?
A valid question to which I have no valid answer. I swear I used to have more going on upstairs… What happened?  Did my gray anatomy migrate, along with the vast majority of my body’s nutrients, to my placenta, only to be incinerated with all the other toxic hospital waste? Maybe I should have kept hold of the slimy afterbirth, after all, stuck it in a freezer bag for later consumption. Maybe Yoko Ono really was onto something there. Obviously she knew something I didn’t.

In any case, I used to be able to converse about topics ranging beyond the finer points of my son’s bowels. In my past life I took an interest in current affairs, and occasionally did more than scan the headlines of the daily rags. After work, my husband and I would discuss what was going on in the world. Sometimes I even had opinions about said goings-on.

Lately, though, I feel reduced to potty talk
My conversational skills have been constipated by parenthood. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good poop story with the best of them. But I yearn to be more than the sum of my son’s milestones. Is it asking too much to engage me in a dialogue about something other than the pros and cons of cloth diapering? Even though motherhood is a passion for me, and I love my son more than I thought possible, I am first and foremost a woman, first and foremost a Human Being.

Besides, I don’t want to become that mom — you know, the one who can’t seem to talk about ANYTHING but her children. So when I am talking to you, please don’t assume that I am lifeless and vapid as an amoeba. If (heaven forbid) I should bump into you at a party, don’t assume just because I’m a stay-at-home mom that my ‘occupation’ somehow discounts me from the ranks of the interesting and worth talking to? After all, I tell a mean poop story…

Julie M Green (aka Little Green Mom) is a novelist and freelance writer who rants and raves about all things mommy at  She lives in Toronto with her husband and two-year-old son, Jackson.  Visit or follow her on Twitter @juliemgreen.

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