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Confessions of a Stage Mom

January 26, 2010
This fall, Brynna and I were photographed for a calendar. Flavour, our women’s ministry at Fellowship Church, put together a calendar to advertise the Spring series about seasons of life. During the photo shoot, a woman there doing makeup approached me about Brynna doing child modeling. One thing led to another, and to my shock, it happened. My child was signed to a modeling agency in Dallas. She had her first photo shoot a few weeks ago, and today we traveled an hour away for her to shoot a commercial.

Here’s the deal. I never imagined this. I kind of thought the whole thing was laughable at first. Even now, I find it hard to tell people. For some reason, I feel embarrassed. I guess I don’t want them to assume I parade my kid around in glitter and high heels. So to say the least, I’m the farthest thing from a crazy stage mom…or so I thought.

Today’s shoot was not ideal. We arrived early, but Brynna’s call time was 1:30pm. Translation: NAP TIME. BG spent about 30 minutes smiling, playing with other kids, dancing, waving and doing her general attention-appealing routine. About the time she would be going down for a nap at home, a stranger came and took her away. Needless to say, she was less than thrilled. Brynna tends to have a flair for the dramatic, so she immediately went into high gear. She was determined to convince anyone in a 10 mile radius that bamboo was being shot under her fingernails. She screamed, kicked, made sounds like she might throw up her cheerios and screamed some more. They tried several tactics but were unsuccessful at calming her.

In the world of child acting, this is not a big deal. It happens everyday. It just means Brynna won’t be used for this shoot, but they’ll call her for another one another day, and the world keeps turning. In the world of Regina, it was cause for a call to both husband and sister and almost a need for a tissue. (Almost. Don’t get crazy.) I was just not ok. I don’t want to have the kid who can’t be out of her mom’s presence. I had a whole meltdown, trying to determine where in the last 10 months I went wrong. I wasn’t going to the REALLY crazy place of being a bad mom, but I was definitely on the road to crazy. I wondered if my staying at home is not best for her. Does she need more time apart from me? Have I been so strict with her napping schedule that she can’t function from the hours of 2-4pm? Then I began mentally sizing her up to the other kids at the shoot. One girl was walking at 8 months. One boy was perfectly happy being passed from photographer to production assistant, never once needing Mom. I drew the only conclusion I saw…I’ve failed her.

Ok, so that wasn’t the only conclusion to draw, but it was the one I went with first. After thanking my family for not thinking ill of me, I did what I should have done in the beginning. I stopped. And took a breath. Stage mom, working mom, stay–at-home mom, we all have the same desires for our kids. We want them to be the best they can be. We want them to thrive and grow, to love and live fully. This is one of many days I’ll question myself as a parent, I’m sure. But what I know for next time is this…Our days together will not be perfect, but Brynna will always be loved. I could care less how old she is when she walks or if she is in a commercial. I care that she sees Love lived out. If that happens, we had a good day. And that’s alright by me.

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  • Vikki January 27, 2010 at 3:57 pm

    You are an amazing mother, sister and woman! I love reading your blog to hear about things from your perspective…helps me to laugh my butt off. Love you!!!

  • DivaDr175 January 29, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    First, 10 month olds are supposed to have stranger anxiety and not like being with strangers.
    Second, nap time should be at a routine hour and 2 hours is a great length (can I try that at work?)
    Third, BG has an amazing mom who is teaching her the most important thing she could ever learn, the Love of Christ.

    You rock and make sure I get an autograph!