I can bullshit my way out of pretty much any situation. Sarcasm is indeed a gift and highly under-appreciated and/or utilized in my humble opinion. It can get you out of the damnedest of predicaments without so much as batting an eyelid. I use it a lot. Some might argue too much, but I don’t surround myself with people who don’t get me. It’s not good for my soul. There’s room in the world for all kinds, and to each their own. Thankfully, I can choose my friends.
That said, I was recently asked a question that I was unable to answer. It happens sometimes. In an ideal world, I would be sitting behind my computer and could take ample time to process and then write a well thought out response. Internal processing. This is where I excel. I do not like to be put on the spot in public and quite frankly avoid it at all costs. I need to think before I speak as a rule. Give me a topic and put me behind closed doors away from everyone else and I am a goddamn genius.
On a related note, someone recently had the nerve to ask me TO MY FACE, “What is a good mom?”
I’ll be damned if I couldn’t answer it. I sat there looking into space waiting for something/anything to roll off my tongue.
Speechless. Awkward silence. Nothing.
Unwanted flashbacks from college ensued.
“Great question. A real thinker.”
“Someone who loves their kids.”
Wow, good one Einstein. Go back to Kindergarten.
Long story short, I couldn’t answer the question.
And then I started thinking, can anyone? I mean really answer it in a way that would satisfy the general population and not create an uproar of debate from around the globe. I’m not talking about the mommy wars bullshit either. Yawn. Just a general statement, maybe a healthy paragraph, but definitely not a book. A book would be obnoxious. Please don’t do it.
Here’s the deal. I think that I am a good mom. I think that my kids think that I am a good mom. Yet, I have no idea how to adequately define what a good mom is in such a way that wouldn’t result in the immediate release of blood thirsty hounds to my jugular vein in three seconds flat.
I definitely know that I am not a great mom. I roll my eyes and say “fuck” way too much behind my offspring’s back to get that badge. Plus, I’m not on the PTO. I definitely could be, I just don’t want to be. It’s a choice. There are several other examples that immediately disqualify me from waving the coveted “World’s Best Mom” flag on my doorstep as well, but I’m not in the business of self destruction, nor am I an idiot, so I’ll stop here with that.
Regardless, Good is what I aspire to be and what I am physically and emotionally capable of.
Maybe this makes me a bad mom? Hmm??? Such a conundrum.
Maybe I should ask the world wide web what I am? Surely someone out there knows the answer and can once and for all provide me with some clarity. In today’s day and age, experts/critics are everywhere. They are waiting for you to provide zero context and impart a blanket statement, such as, “I love it when my house is clean.” Seems perfectly harmless, but I guarantee that this seemingly innocent statement (used here hypothetically and solely for purposes of proving a specific point, i.e., it didn’t really happen in real life, a.k.a., I made it up) will offend at least 5 people in 3 seconds flat.
Expected responses include…
“A clean house is a sign of a wasted life.”
“Must be nice to have time to clean your whole house. Get a job.”
“I feel sorry for your kids. The time you spent cleaning your house, they spent making memories…without you.”
“I’m not sure what you are implying here, but I don’t like it.”
“For so many reasons, I am highly offended.”
“I love it too! Are we sisters?! I’ve found the most effective way to maintain a clean house without causing too much stress for yourself and/or your family is to get the kids involved. Make it fun by creating a flow chart, or game so to speak. And always keep Magic Eraser on hand, but locked in an overhead cabinet beyond the reach of young children, for obvious reasons. Check out my blog for more great lifestyle tips.”
O.M.G. Shoot me.
Let’s come at it from a different angle. This is not a contest people. There is no prize for “Best Mom Ever.” There will never be a winner. It is not an Olympic sport, but let’s imagine if it were for moment. Just for fun.
- You stopped breastfeeding your child three months in because you got a terrible case of mastitis that led to an even more disgusting GI infection that forced you to choose between pumping and dumping for three weeks straight or formula feeding your child from that point forward…and you chose formula! Disqualified for life, you selfish bitch!
- You slept with your infant child in your bed and had two sips of wine before doing it, at church. The Olympics are not for you. Jail, on the other hand…
- Oh a whim, you sent Cheetos to school for your kid’s healthy snack. Participant ribbon revoked!
- You let your toddler sit on your lap as you backed your minivan out of the driveway. Safety first asshole! You will now be put to death by jellybean stoning from the annoying kid down the block who eats his boogers.
- You had the audacity to proclaim out loud that you don’t always love being a mom (which to the general public also implies that you don’t love your kids). Find your seat in hell. And get comfy. You’re not going anywhere.
- You feed your children frozen Mickey Mouse shaped chicken nuggets at least twice a week. Your children will immediately be removed from your home and be raised by the winner of the Mommy Olympics, thereby receiving quinoa and organic raw spinach for every meal from now until death. As a consolation prize, you will receive a lifetime supply of Mickey Mouse nuggets and will, as terms of your probation, have to Facetime the local authorities at dinner time each and every night while they watch you chew (and swallow) your daily ration of at least four.
Good God. How did we get here as a collective group of grown women? I don’t know why I care and/or get irritated with that which is our current state of ridiculousness. At this point, I guess I should just embrace the differences of opinions out there and come to terms with the fact that having a sense of humor when it comes to parenting is just highly frowned upon by a shit ton of people. I’m disappointed in myself that I have let the mere anticipation of these opinions shake my confidence. It’s truly disheartening that it has come to the point where no one person can say out loud with any bit of confidence, “I am a good parent,” without a bunch of assholes out there yelling, “Prove it!”
We have become an absolute joke. And who doesn’t love Mickey Mouse?!
God bless the Disunited States of Parenthood.