I just read yet another blog post written by a mom who was basically screaming "Yeah, I'm a mom but I'm still a cool person! Motherhood doesn't define me! I smoke, for Christ's sake!" And to that I say:
I'm SO tired of all the bullshit we feed ourselves about motherhood, kids, and all the trappings therein. As if being a mother was not ENOUGH. It's a fucking HARD JOB, people. The hardest. In fact, no sane person would ever CHOOSE this job, but how do you know what you're getting yourself into? You don't know how your little angel is going to turn out. All you know is that you pee on a stick, you have life growing inside you, and you plan and scheme and imagine all the wonderful things that will come from having the world's cutest, smartest, most amazing baby.
And you have that baby and guess what? They're pretty freaking amazing! They're cute and smart and funny and WAY better than that other mom's kid. They're also little monsters, they throw tantrums (not only when they're two!), they hurl insults at you, they debate everything you say, and they break your heart over and over and over again. So, why in the HELL would you want to be a mom?
Some moms pride themselves on not driving minivans. As if that were the ultimate selling out. The truth is, it's a lot easier to haul your kids and their friends around in a minivan and thirteen cupholders looks pretty good when you're trying to feed everyone on a road trip. Better than sixteen ounces of pop on the floor. But there WILL be pop on the floor. And milk and Goldfish crackers and candy wrappers and all manner of other disgusting things you can't even imagine as you swaddle your soft, pink bundle of joy into the car seat for the first time.
Some moms will cry actual tears when they look in the mirror and they are carrying an extra five or ten or fifty pounds on their frame after giving birth. And they will lament how they've "let themselves go" no matter that their newborn has colic or their preschooler was just diagnosed with autism or their teenager is in rehab. As if they can actually do it all - maintain their beauty, their sanity and their sense of humor at the same time, while life stabs them in the heart time and time again.
Some moms will go back to school or change careers or take up public speaking so they can constantly reassure themselves that they still "got it" - ambition, drive, the ability to reinvent themselves over and over again. For what? To impress who? The kids don't care. The kids will love you no matter what you look like, or what you serve for dinner or how much money you make at your fascinating career. The kids will be thrilled when you play a board game, or get a Blizzard in the drive-thru at Dairy Queen, or take a picture of their latest Play-Doh creation.
I'm so tired of the expectations. I'm sick of people asking what you DO, instead of who you are. What do I do? Sometimes I solve problems that make achieving world peace look easy and sometimes I eat cake over the kitchen sink. But who am I? I'm a multi-faceted individual with many interests and dreams and hopes and wishes just like you. Why do I need to "prove" it by constantly achieving? Why can't I embrace whatever station of life I'm in without explanation or disparaging it or somehow adding a "yes, but?"
It's ok to be wherever you are. It's ok to be whatever you are. If you truly don't like where you've come to rest in life, you can change it. And if you truly DO like it, you don't need to explain it to anyone. Your enough is not their enough. What drives you, what you're passionate about, doesn't need to fit into anyone's mold. If having many irons in the fire fuels you, go for it! If living a simple life makes you content, so be it. As long as you are taking care of yourself and the humans you brought into this world, you're doing a great job.
Life is dynamic. It will twist and turn and change and you will become many different people over the course of your lifetime. What you once could not imagine may become your daily norm. What you once thought you could NEVER do, you will do over and over again. You will become so many different people. Who you are today is NOT who you will be tomorrow or ten years from now or on your deathbed.
You started out your life as an individual. You took a path known only to you. If you choose to be a mom, you'll have a chunk of time dedicated to the raising of little humans and that time will feel both endless and fleeting. It will be full of unimaginable joy and unimaginable pain. And it will be over before you know it. And then? You'll be a new individual. One who's weathered the storm and come out relatively unscathed. You'll have more time, more money and perhaps more energy to try new things. To reinvent yourself yet again. And hopefully you won't feel the need to justify everything you do and say. To prove you are more than "just a mom."
Stop kidding yourself. Embrace who you are, right now, without explanations or excuses. Chances are you're doing the best you can. And that's pretty freaking amazing.