First, I read a post by anymommy, who referenced a little cyber-project by her bad mother to find out what moms around the world love about being a mother. Interesting. Then, that very day, I was in Detroit - specifically wasting time watching Oprah cater to her mom-fans by being all cheer-leader-like and sympathetic when we all know Oprah's babies are dogs, which doesn't count. (in my book)
Then, I got the following email. (I won't identify the sender, except to say I love her to pieces and she just found out she's going to be a mama - to a human, not a puppy - and on her first week of mommy-consciousness she got scared out of her pants by Oprah.)
I'm wondering if you had the opportunity to watch oprah today...she had on her "oprah mothers" (first of all, what business does oprah have to discuss motherhood on tv when she's not even a mother...) anyway, all the mom's on there were very negative and were talking about what "nobody told them" before they became mothers. frankly, it was very disturbing to me. #1. I don't like when people are negative. and #2 I'm just scared about being a mom in the first place so this didn't help. anyway, so i'm emailing to find out if you watched it and I'm looking for you to tell me that "yes, those woman were very negative and although motherhood can be difficult like the woman were talking about at times, it is still wonderful." If you could also say something like, "the oprah mom's were just trying to be a little overly sarcastic to get more air time on oprah" cuz that's what i'm really thinking it was...but i need some confirmation.
I put off responding to this email because I wanted to really evaluate if I've turned into a negative mommy? I'd like to think I'm a real mommy, but does that have to be negative? So, I've been contemplating this this week, and these are the haphazard thoughts I've come up with:
Because I love you, here you go: Yes, those women were being very negative, and although it is difficult at times, motherhood is wonderful. And, by the way, I think those Oprah Moms were just trying to be overly sarcastic so they could get some more air-time on Oprah.
Thanks to things like mommy-blogging and Oprah, us mommies have found a little community where it is okay and welcomed to vent about the hard work that we do at home. Finally, we've realized that there are other people out there who are struggling to make it through the day and who think, "If I hear Elmo's stupid little voice one more time, I'm going to stomp on him until he stops begging to be tickled!"
And, that kind of community is welcome.
And, when we get in that kind of community, we do tend to get a tad (I have to watch my language because my grandma reads this) not-so-nice.
But, I love being a mother. I do. Here's how I've come to understand it:
The moments are precious.
The days are torture.
The years go by too fast.
That's the perspective I try to let govern my attitude. And that's why, although there's many things I love about being a mother, the one that comes to my mind this morning, is Tina.
To be a mommy and enjoy it to its fullest, you need a Tina - a friend who will soak up every precious moment with you, celebrate every victory, understand every time you can't pull it together, not get offended when you don't call back for three days, sympathize when the baby not sleeping makes you actually angry, get you through the torturous days, and be there as the years fly by.
Having someone - a friend or the blogosphere - to understand how it can be so hard and so amazing at the same time is Mommy's Secret Weapon.
But, if that's not enough for you, there is more to love about being a mother:
- making a mess every day
- seeing the things you don't like so much about yourself coming to life in the cutest ways possible
- having a reason to care about the future of our planet, our country, etc.
- having someone to pass on all of those family stories you've been mentally collecting for years
- watching your husband become a daddy
I have to admit, many days, that sums it up for me.
To play along with Her Bad Mother in getting around the world in 80 days, I'm going to tag Kristen at Following the Dream. She lives in Hungary, and I'd love to know what she loves about being a mother.