I'm not a bio mom (a term that we stepparents use to describe a woman who gives birth).
It's my understanding, though, that pretty much all bio moms can have difficulty placing their young child for the first time into the care of another—even when that other is a capable, caring, professional who may actually have more experience caring for a child than the mom herself (daycare workers, teachers, grandparents).
That's pretty much where I'm at right now, on the eve of handing over this website to a new editor. Milford Patch is my baby and I've never given up control of it. Not even for a weekend. Not even for a day.
I've been promoted to associate regional editor for Patch MetroWest Boston, a region that includes Milford, Framingham, Grafton, Holliston, Hopkinton, Marlborough, Natick, Northborough, Shrewsbury and Westborough, and will eventually include Ashland and Medway.
Taking my place in Milford will be , a seasoned journalist who most recently worked for nearly a decade at the Atlanta Journal Constitution and got her start in community news.
To some of you, particularly those who've discovered Milford Patch in recent weeks, it may seem a bit dramatic for me to be writing a borderline-weepy "good-bye" when I've been running this site for five months. What's five months in the scheme of things?
Here's some perspective: it's 676 published articles, 376 of them created by me. It's 842 directory listings, and thousands of e-mails from the community. It's hundreds of introductions and hundreds of hours working on this site and loving (almost) every minute of it.
Being a Patch local editor has given me a sense of accomplishment I'd never had in my journalism career. It has been an amazing feeling each time I've met someone who tells me they love Milford Patch and visit the site every day, because five months and one day ago, the site didn't even exist.
I'll still be overseeing Milford, and I may fill in from time to time and write some stories, but the site will be Mary's. And in another five months and one day, she will have been here, putting her imprint on the site, for longer than I have been.
That's kind of tough for a writer such as myself to take (all of us have egos), but isn't parenting about being selfless?
I know Milford Patch will continue to grow and thrive, as will Patch.com as a company. It's a pretty cool thing that we're doing here, and we'll only get better.
I'll be the proud parent, beaming from the sidelines.