Thursday, April 9, 2009

Secret Lives of Moms

I wouldn’t say I am Oprah’s biggest fan, but if an interesting topic is being aired, I’ll tune in. Monday’s show was titled “Secret Lives of Moms.” My mom, watching on east coast time, emailed me suggesting I should watch and asked me to share what my thoughts were on the show.
If you didn’t see the show, here is a recap. Oprah’s guests were two friends who wrote a few books, one being “I Was a Really Good Mom Before I Had Kids.” The other guest was one of the actresses from the TV show “In the Motherhood.” She also had Skype guests who shared from their homes, their “secret confessions of being a mom.” I can’t say too many of the confessions really surprised me, except for the mom who said she peed in an extra diaper while driving so she wouldn’t wake her kids sleeping in the back seat.
I really appreciated these confessions because I feel like that is what motherhood needs to be more about. We don’t need to reveal all, but we don’t need to appear as though we have EVERYTHING together. Today in our moms group a mom shared that she feels as though she’s not relating well with her husband. This opened a floodgate of emotions and thoughts from other moms who were feeling the same way. The mom who first confessed this said to the group later. “Thank you for sharing, I felt as if I was the only one feeling this way.” She and others now have good tools as to how to better connect with their husbands.
Another reason I appreciated the show is because the women talked about expectations. What expectations do we place on ourselves as moms? Do we feel like we have to have another job to fit in with the working moms, do we have to have the laundry done all the time, what will my friends think if they see how dusty it is under my couch, or do we feel as though we have failed if we didn’t get a shower in that day? What messages are we sending to other moms by our questions and responses to things. Someone asked me what I do all day and I said, “I’m a stay at home mom and raise my little boy.” She responded by saying. “Ok, well what else do you do?.” Is it not enough anymore to “simply” raise children? As if feeding 12x a day, changing 25 diapers, going to dr.’s appointments and school and sporting events and PTA meetings, and cleaning, etc...isn’t busy enough. Now please don’t get me wrong, I understand that some women have to work or want to work. But, no wonder woman are feeling the need to pee in a diaper as they drive, go without showering for 5 days, forgetting to feed their kid dinner...there is pressure from all around us to do more, do more, do more.
Moms, whether working or single or staying at home, you are doing a great job! Its ok if dinner is late to the table or pizza needs to be called in, it’s ok if the laundry doesn’t get done, it’s ok if their are dust bunnies, as long as you are fully engaged in loving your children. Take some time to ask yourself what your expectations are. Are they realistic? Who is setting them...the world? If your married, talk to your spouse about their expectations of you as a mom. Be on the same page with them!
That was really long, but I couldn’t go without sharing that. Please share your thoughts, even if you disagree on something. I would love to know what you have to say.

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