Okay I’ll admit it this movie, “I don’t know how she does it” looks very interesting. It looks eerily similar to the life I can sometimes lead. However, I can already tell it plays into that supermom persona that just irritates the crap outta me. That one that us moms go out of our freaking way to try and accomplish.
And if you are one of the lucky ones to accomplish it my guess is you are also one of the unlucky ones that realizes the title is always fleeting. Because in one breathe you are supermom and in the next you are pooper mom. You know what a poopermom is right? The mom that isn’t super.
That is me. Take last week. An assigned task in one of my classes was to sent a short but sweet bio to our prof. After an almost four month hiatus, where I was solely wife to my guy and mom to my #1, #2 & #3, from the university I was eager to get back in. I happily sent along my bio…my academic bio/resume. I wrote wonderful words of prose (okay exaggerating a little here) of how I had waited for forever for this class and the time had finally arrived. Instead it came out more like a puppy on a brand new puppy pad. I piddled all over the pad and a little on the floor. So you say what does that mean?
Well at first I did not know what that meant. Then I am in sitting class the next week listening to my prof talk about others families. And I think, “Oh shit! Give me the pooper mom award!” I sent a long email where I spoke not word of my family. Instead I was so excited to be using the other part of my brain that had been on hiatus that I clearly piddled on the pad in excitement. Umm does supermom forget something so important as claiming her flesh and blood? I am guessing not. As soon as I realized it, I corrected the situation but it left me in stupor. How in the heck did I forget my family as if they don’t exist? What kind of mom does that? Oh that is right, pooper mom.
After I awhile I figured out why. I am pretty much over that whole act of super mom. I have realized in the last eight years (and even more in my last graduate year) that I am pretty freaking neat before you even know I birthed my littles and married their poppy. Yea I come with flaws and I discuss those almost daily on here. But gone for me are the days of pretending that clean and folded laundry put in my children’s drawers by me and a crock pot meal planned weeks in advance prove some kind of magical motherly love that I must and should possess to carry the title of “Good Mom.” I am a good mom. A damn good mom. I love and protect my children fiercely and I am bettering myself for them so they can see that their own possibilities are endless. Yes parts of that claim are selfish, but I realized awhile ago if I flush all of that selfishness out just because I am a mom I am left with something very grumpy and bitter that I am not sure many could love.
I am gonna take this one step further and get even more pooper mom points because I am going to admit here and now that I thoroughly enjoy my time on campus with my peers and students. You know why? Because they see some of the best sides of me without ever knowing that earlier that morning I was probably wiping a butt or trying not to puke as I watched my daughter puke. I always share my children’s stories when they want to hear them and I love to tell them just as much as the next mom. I can whip out the pictures with the best of them. But my moral to this story is I don’t offer if it isn’t asked. They don’t see me in that light unless I take them there.
That is not to say my children and husband are some great secret that no one knows about. I just want people to see me as more than a super mom. What happens when we meet someone? The inevitable question is, “What do you do?” Followed by, “Are you married?” And lastly, “Do you have any kids?” Let me quickly give you those answers. I am a graduate student, I am an instructor, I am happily married and I have three beautiful little girls ages 10, 7 and 2. You know what question comes next right?
I don’t know how you do it all.
The simple answer always is: I do it because what is my other option? Do I lay down cry and quit? No, nor would I want to. I love my busy chaotic life. We saw this summer how well I dealt with down time (think back to black cloud). When someone pukes, I gotta clean it up. Just like when a student doesn’t understand rhetorical analysis I gotta stop what I am doing and explain it to be sure they understand. Or just like when my prof wants a proposal two weeks from last Monday. I sit down and type it out. I do it like the rest of you. One thing at a time. And when I cannot do it. I am trying to get better at admitting it and taking it one step further…finding a way to be okay with that.
What I hate that comes with that label of motherhood are the stereotypes. My goal now is to clear those stereotypes up at least as they pertain to myself. When someone tells you they are a mom remember these simple things:
- They still enjoy watching a movie without a thousand interruptions and that is okay
- They still enjoy a quiet grocery trip without a whiny kiddo saying in the most annoying voice ever, “I want that!” And that is okay
- They still enjoy sleeping in and not getting up and making a “farm” breakfast and that is okay
- They still enjoy wearing clothes that might show some cleavage instead of spit up and that is okay
- They still like to feel sexy and sometimes have naughty conversations that aren’t about who was naughty that day and that is okay
- They still like to read a book end to end without having to point out pictures and make the long sounds of words and that is okay
- They still like to go get coffee or have a glass of wine and enjoy the peace and quiet that typically comes with it and that is okay
- They still like to listen to Eminem and not turn down the radio or change the lyrics to be suitable for little ears and that is okay
- They still like spend time with their husbands/boyfriends/friends and partners and not have thousands of conversations swirling around their kiddos latest milestone and that is okay
- They still enjoy watching Real Housewives Marathons on Saturday and that is okay
Clearly the list could go on and they… is me. I guess my point here is that moms are human too. So the next time you see a mom that is busy and chaotic don’t assume she does it all. She knows she does. She does it because has to. She isn’t looking for a “Mother of the Year” award. Instead, at the end of the day all she really wants is a few of those moments above and a slimy wet kiss from her littles while she reads them another book.