Calling all moms - Specifically those of you who have been campaigning for the position of President of the Bad Moms Club. Good moms can stay and read too, but really is there such thing as a good mom? From what I can see, the whole lot of us suck.
First of all, I just want to give you super moms a shout out - HOLLA!
Putting yourself out there is a brave thing to do and I want to acknowledge you for your effort to be recognized for the heap of suck that is YOU.
You are running a helluva campaign, and I especially applaud those of you who are getting every last skeleton out of your mom closet on your own instead of waiting for your kids to cough up your missteps and failures during family therapy. Honesty is a campaign strategy I can really get behind. Oh, and if you admit your shortcomings, and you beat yourself up over stuff like raising your voice after a long and frustrating day or forgetting to sign a permission slip and having to bring it to school after receiving a panicked call from your 3rd grader, you are teaching your kids that you tolerate nothing less than perfection with regard to your own behavior. Sheesh, hopefully they will apply these same standards to their own behavior. Having an imperfect kid would be the most terrible thing...(shudder)
Not being perfect? Phooey. Making mistakes? Not in this family! Good job. Keep it up. This world needs more judgment, intolerance and unrealistic expectations thrust upon us. I mean clearly we aren’t hard enough on ourselves, not disciplined so…good stuff.
TWO VERY BIG THUMBS UP!
But alas, I so have some bad news for you. There is no Bad Moms Club. It doesn’t exist. It’s a myth, not dissimilar to the one about Ole Saint Nick. Sure the spirit of Christmas is real, the magic of giving and all that feel good crap, but the fat man in a red suit? Ah…not so much.
The same holds true for this much talked about club of Bad Moms everyone claims to belong to. This spirit of self deprecating and wallowing in guilt is as real as a Christmas carol, but the actual club? Well, I’m sure there are informal meetings being held somewhere, maybe even in your neighborhood, but I don’t think serving frozen pizza for dinner two nights in a row qualifies you as a candidate for President of the Bad Moms club.
You might ask what brought on this ridiculous rant and so I’ll tell you. An Internet News site recently requested an interview with me to talk about finding humor in the everyday life of a parent. For me this is easy, but it wasn’t always this way and it took some serious life events to smack some sense into me.
There was a time when I thought my son might never stop "messing" in his Spiderman undies, and that once I actually got my daughter to the dentist and her all day, every day pacifier habit was revealed, I’d be the front-runner in the campaign for President of Bad Moms who have stinky kids with rotten teeth. What worried me is that I didn't care. Did this make me a bad mom? Because I didn't care what others thought about the choices I made?
Maybe that did make me a bad parent and a bad person.
Maybe I should care more?
These thoughts were fleeting, but very real and very scary to me. There is nothing like self doubt that is reinforced by a sense of isolation, fear of being judged and making mistakes.
Oye – raising a family! Right and wrong only apply to what works for us specifically, under the roofs of our own houses with the unique souls that make up our individual families. What’s important is that we care about HOW we are doing it. If you care enough to worry that you qualify for an officer position in the non-existent Bad Moms Club, then I have good news for you. You don’t qualify.
I propose that we moms collectively and officially vote to rid the mom vernacular of this ridonkulous bold statement about being a bad mom and being in the bad moms club. Let's stop listing our qualifications for this “club,” and start focusing on what we do right. Together, we have to stop not only the stinking thinking, but also the smack talking, saying out loud for our children to hear that the mistakes we make, even the whoppers, make us bad moms, because they do not.
They do not.
We need to get rid of the Bad Moms Club and replace it with a motto, a mantra if you will. I vote for something catchy like “YES WE CAN!” What? That’s taken? Hmmm..okay, how about this – PARENTING - PROGRESS NOT PERFECTION.
You likey? Me too. I likey. A lotty.
Some of us (me) tend to be crappy cooks, who raise their voices (me) and ignore their kids for long periods of time on the weekends while curled up with a book and a glass of wine (me again). Some of us (me) forget all sorts of important things and volunteer sporadically. Some of us (not me) tend to be good cooks who whip up nutritious meals from organic food. Some (sometimes me) remain calm under pressure and others (not me) spend most weekends engaged in high quality education activities with their kids. Some moms (not me) and are honored for their volunteer work.
I just made a list and I said that we should stop that. Meh, progress not perfection. Despite all this, I know I'm a good mom.
I would like to be a member of a moms club that swaps books and clothes and ideas and hugs. I want to drink wine and play cards and shop for shoes (if the moms I’m with insist on it, otherwise ick to shopping). I want to be in a moms club where we are all equal and our individuality is embraced and even encouraged. My club-mates will all be good moms, because they care enough to worry that they aren’t, but know that’s what makes them good. We will call our club The Good Moms Club and everybody is welcome.
Forgive me people, remember what I said about making progress not expecting perfection. I've got a long way to go sometimes, (a lot of times) but, I am a good mom.