How ’bout a big hand now? (Click the link if you really want into my headspace anytime I hear someone say those words…) Wait-wait a minute… Let me back up a little bit. This morning EmilyJo and I were having a chat about how we sometimes just need a break from Facebook and our Moms Club forums. Not because we don’t enjoy them, but more so because of the content that seems to be circulating so prevalently about moms. Not that there is something wrong with being a mom (obviously!), or that we don’t care about other moms (we do!), but it’s because of what they are saying.
Almost on a daily basis it feels like we’re seeing posts from friends praising the SAHM mom life and how they deserve recognition for the hard work that they do. (This post is NOT anti-SAHMs… Hello- SarahRo is one (and a damn good one if I do say so!)) Then we turn around and see the posts about how the working moms need it known that they work because they love their children etc etc etc… and we both (independently and then concurrently while bitching/working on the phone) came to the exact same conclusion: IT’S ALL FUCKING HARD (AND WE GET NO RESPECT)!
This is not evolving into a “my partner/friends/kids/groups don’t respect me” either. It’s just a simple fact of it all, that we’re all struggling to make it work and we’re all just doing the best we can. We’re trying, and 9 times out of 10 – we’re succeeding. (Woohoo! The kid’s alive and the house isn’t burned down! You’ve earned your glass of wine tonight!) We’re all silently projecting our own insecurities onto the “other moms” and dealing with our demons through them. To the SAHMs worry that the working moms are judging them and think they do nothing all day – as a working mom, I promise you we’re not. Why? Because I’m over here worrying that I’m missing out on raising my child because I have to work, and concerned that he’s falling behind because I’m only with him some of the time. To the working mom’s worrying that the SAHMs are judging us for leaving our most precious decision because we’re “prioritizing” work, I’ve talked to my share – they’re not. We’re all juggling too many things and just trying to make it. If you stay-at-home, work-from-home, work-in-an-office, or part-time – more likely than not your plate is overly full.
Isn’t it possible that we’re all looking for a little gratification and support? For someone to tell us that we’re doing it right? That we actually know what we’re doing and we’re killing it? For a partner/husband/friend to watch the kids for an hour or two and have us return to a chorus of, “I don’t know how you do it all! You must be wonder woman!”? Or for that stranger at Target smile benevolently at us with the whisper of “what a well-behaved child” plays in the corner of their mouth while our toddler sits in the cart smiling like a little cherub. Or to be pulled aside in the pick-up line at school because, “Of all the children in my 30 years of teaching, little Timmy/Samantha/etc. is truly a delight — so kind, so smart, so polite, and just adorable to boot!”?
We’re all looking for just a little respect (or to tie it back to the intro song… “How bout a big hand now!?”) and quite frankly we all deserve it. Single/Married/SAHM/Working – however you do it, just remember the only real requirement is that you do it. Your kids won’t hate you for being the best mom you can possibly be. Some days you’re the one doling out the time-outs and others you’re laying in bed eating popsicles watching Paw Patrol, but either is acceptable (including the very large gap of possibilities between). I think if we all got out of our heads and stopped worrying and comparing and just took a moment to appreciate that as hard as it is for us, someone else is dealing with the same stuff and it’s probably hard for them too – we’d feel a little better about it.
So in light of Mother’s Day being a week away, I hope you accept my gift of a great big round of applause. Because however you’re momming- it’s uniquely you and it works for you and yours, so you keep being awesome! Keep that shit up! You’re rocking this whole mom thing!
PS – If you want to share this with your partner/friend/spouse as incentive for them to give you a little encouragement, that’s okay too 😉