May 31, 2014

A Child-less Woman's Advice to Mothers

I've actually been thinking about writing this for a very long time but actually received some motivation today. I was browsing Yahoo! and this article about mommy wars came up. Mommy wars was something I thought I had coined in my own mind but I guess not. Before I begin my rant, I would like to introduce my commentary with a quote from the Yahoo! article I read by Elise Stolé:

"It seems like every week there’s a story in the news that gets women — specifically mothers — talking. Case in point: Over the weekend, actress and mother of two Emma Thompson told the Daily Mail, “You can’t be a great mum and keep working all the time,” adding that all moms should take a year off work if they can afford it. Recently, we've also heard Gwyneth Paltrow lament that a Hollywood mom’s schedule is more difficult than that of a mother with a “routine” office job; expectant mother Mila Kunis say that she plans to forgo an epidural to get her delivery "right"; a Florida hospital announcing it would no longer distribute formula in an effort to increase breastfeeding; and women are facing arrest for nursing in public.
Once again, the "mommy wars" rage on: Breast milk vs. formula. Working vs. staying at home. Using pain medication vs. forgoing it during childbirth." 
The rest of the article (in my opinion) completely diverges from the point of the quote above and I thought it was irrelevant but I will post the link at the bottom of this post for reference. Anyway, the quote above is what motivated me to actually blog about this topic. Everyone has something tosay about how to rear children. All organic food, breast feed, no spanking, cloth diapers, no vaccinations, natural birthing, etc. In my free time, I love reading blogs and I love crafting. Some of the best craft ideas at one point came from mommy blogs (blogs created by mothers for mothers). Nowadays, I HATE mommy blogs! It seems they're mostly into trying to be a perfect mom and that's the annoying part.
I don't have kids so maybe you think I don't get it. Growing up, I had the perfect mom. She didn't feed me organic food, never breast fed, I was delivered through a C-section with all the meds that were available, I got spanked, I received all my yearly vaccinations, went to public schools, never did dance or extra-curriculars, and never wore sunscreen unless we went to the beach. To some this may sound like bad parenting but you know why my mom was perfect: Everything she did for us, she did it because she thought it was best for us. She didn't do it because other moms did it, because some soccer mom with a cutesy blog told her to do it. She always helped my brother and I with homework, took us to the library frequently, after school we always had a homemade lunch, and dinner was always hot and on the table once my dad got home from work. She taught us about life, she believed in us, and always listened to us and those things made her perfect. 
When I was around 4 years old, I snagged a modeling gig. I went to rehearsal to learn how to walk and move and I hated it. I was so frustrated with it and my mom saw that. I remember seeing her peek through the window watching with all the other moms. After it was all over my mom asked me "Did you like doing that? Do you think you'd want to come back?" And I flat out said no and we never went back. She didn't force me and gave me a choice at 4 years old! I love my mom so much...Of course when it came to chores, doctor's visits, and going to school those were never up for discussion! 
In the 1990s my parents weren't the richest. In fact we were in poverty. We weren't ultra poor but we didn't live in the best neighborhood for awhile but my parents made sure we were taken care of. It wasn't until the late 90's when my dad got a great job and we moved up to middle class, but things didn't change. My parents didn't buy us excessive material things to occupy our time. They filled my life with so much joy, so many happy memories, My surroundings meant nothing. My mom didn't go out of her way to be a great mom, she did what was natural, out of love. As I got older, we sometimes clashed as all children do at a certain age, but as I matured all the values she instilled me are still inside of me, I am a happy, healthy person, and she is proud of me. 
A "perfect" mom is such a relative term. My definition of a perfect mom is a woman who is flawed, and learning to navigate through this life like anyone else. She is not perfect, never will be, doesn't try to be, but she loves, she nurtures, cares, and she is strong. I get that some people might think my mom wasn't a great mom but to me she was awesome. Who cares what celebrities think, they aren't in our real-life realm. They have nannies, money and their children usually end up screwed up mentally by not getting enough parental attention or over-indulged. I digress...
Today more moms are so busy taking pictures and blogging about their perfectionism, that they forget about the child's childhood experience. It's like a lot of moms are trying to one up the other. Stop trying to capture your child's life through an iPhone and actually experience it! The child will remember those times you played card games with him without a damn picture. Taking too many pictures of your child should almost be a crime but that's another blog for another time. I understand everyone doesn't have a great mom as a role model but let your children grow up WITH love and without all the technicalities.  Instead of trying to be super mom and superior to the average mom just do what comes natural and if you love your children and give them attention I know that's all it takes, the rest will follow!  
Yahoo article link: