As a mom of 3 and a wife for over two decades I waffle on what’s the harder role: spouse or parent. The answer? Depends on the day. Neither commitment is for the faint at heart.
In our role of mother it’s nice to know we are not alone. I often hear/read about how much support a ‘mom network’ can be; and I agree it can be.
But sometimes I have found that while we are encouraging our little ones to “play nice” we might need a reminder ourselves (present author included). [Side note: I realize the proper phrase should be ‘play nicely’ but that’s not usually what rolls off the tongue when we are
yelling encouraging our children.]
There are so many types of mothers out there. Let’s be sensitive to each in their respective role. It may not be one they have chosen, but it may be — regardless, we should be kind, right?
I am a SAHM (that’s ‘stay at home mom’ for those who always wondered). It’s a choice my husband and I made over twenty years ago and one that I welcomed. Are there times I have daydreamed of going to an office, having a power lunch with my associates, and NOT wondered how I would make it to bed time with my darling little angels? You betcha. But for the most part — I have relished my role. However it does sting just a bit at times when I am asked by another mother (who is not a SAHM) the dreaded “what do you do?”
I have friends that have climbed the corporate ladder, have multiple post-graduate degrees, and become very successful in their chosen field. (Can I brag? My best friend from college is killin’ it as a doctor; she’s been a Chief Resident – and I know what this is from my days of watching the TV show, ER), is a partner in her medical practice, and now teaches at a medical school — all while still seeing her own patients. Impressive, huh? She’s also the mom of twin 14-year-old girls God bless her). I know that she gets the raised eyebrow on occasion when asked “who takes care of your children?”
And, as I’ve stated before my heart always goes out to the mythical creature of part-time working/full-time mother; a foot in each camp, trying to do it all. She doesn’t need anyone to question where her loyalties lie because believe me, (I’ve been her) she is asking herself over and over “what am I doing?”
None of us are ever intentionally trying to hurt or shame another (at least I hope not!), but let’s do be sensitive to where one might be.
You’d never want to make the mom who’s had to go to work to support the family financially feel badly (inside she may be wanting to be home with her kiddos).
There’s so much to celebrate in motherhood! I never got to be a cheerleader when I was younger (SIGH) so I relish any chance I can get to cheer on someone whatever their chosen role may be.
I’d like to challenge our mama network to support and CELEBRATE each mother (or dad) where they are and give them the accolades they probably could use. After all — any mother is truly a ‘Super Mom.’
Let’s try these fun phrases with one another:
“Do you work outside the home?”
“What do you like to do in addition to being little Johnny’s mom?”
“Tell me about yourself.”
Avoid phrases like:
“Where did you go to college?”
“Where do you work?”
“What do you want to do when the kids are all in school? Out of the house?”
“I don’t know how you do it.” (this one can cause some angst no matter what category you may be in as a mom)
I bet you have other ideas — share them in the comments below.
And, let’s always remember to play nice. 🙂