Tuesday, January 10, 2012

When The Fight Ain't Fair...Mom vs. Mom

 Stay at home mom (SAHM) vs. work outside the home mom (MOHM) vs. work inside the home mom (WIHM) vs. part-time working mom (PTWM) vs. SAHM while kids are at school
breastfeeding mom vs. formula feeding mom
organic mom vs. non organic mom
homeschooling mom vs. private school mom vs.public school mom
mom with resources vs. mom without resources
single mom vs. mom with a partner

You get the point.
Anyone out there found themselves being drawn into a mom comparison?
Maybe subconsciously or consciously making a judgement?
Keeping score, just a little bit?
I am ashamed to admit, but my answer to these questions is "Yes, sometimes."
Obviously we all have had to do some debating of the issues so that we can make decisions for our own families, but it doesn't mean that we have to get all "judgey-judgey ."

You see, all of those titles end in "mom."  
We all are trying our best not to screw up the ones we love the most.
We all are making some mistakes.
We basically are wasting our time and energy "fighting" about it because the way I see it,
the fight ain't fair.
There are some of us are at home but we have a ton of kids and the family demands are intense. 
There are some who work outside the home, but their job is very stressful and they'd like to be at home more.
Some love their job and have found a good balance. 
There are some who have a rock-star partner to share the burden.
Some have children with special needs, live in poverty, have career talents and dreams that can't or shouldn't be ignored, some have or hire help, some volunteer, some eat bon-bons (just kidding).

The fight ain't fair because all of our circumstances and children are different. 
We each also have...
 a certain tolerance for stress/chaos, 
certain financial needs and wants,
personal beliefs and convictions,
different size families and children with varied educational and social needs, 
varied goals in general.

Some moms have it very difficult all of the time
struggling to feed their family and pay bills,
trying to make a sick child well,
trying to meet a child's special needs physically, educationally, and/or emotionally,
trying to be present and find balance at home and at work.
Again, you get the point.
I just think that this battle is mostly  between women. 
I doubt the mom debates are published in Maxim or GQ.  
We, women, are buying the garbage.  
We, women, are perpetuating it.

As I chastise myself for my part in this, I realize the times I become the most "judgey-judgey" is when someone is not respectful of my time.  I generally don't think about these issues at all unless someone
 for example, comes to me while I am leading their child in an activity and acts like I am putting them out because they are "so busy." or when someone asks for my help but uses my time in a wasteful way.  I can feel myself wanting to list my burdens as well, but I stop myself. 
I bet I have done the same thing.  Shame on me.  

After all, I am living in chaos of my own making. 
I am blessed enough to have had choices regarding my work situation and the financial truth that follows. 
Grandma watches the kids while I work part-time.  Can you say blessing!
I have a wonderful partner in crime who really shares responsibilities with me.
I have chosen close and supportive friends, who have stuck with me (thanks).
I chose to have a lot of kids.
By being home, mostly, I can chose to do laundry during the day or go to the gym.
I chose to be a mom by biology and through foster care/adoption and all that comes with that.
I chose to volunteer for certain things and opt out of others.
I have a faith in God's help and guidance.
I have chosen to write this post instead of cleaning up my house or prepping dinner.

The key here is choice.  
Sometimes I don't have a choice.  
I have little choice regarding the medical conditions, educational strengths and weaknesses, therapy needs, and multiple appointments our family has.
I do have a choice on how I perceive it.  
I feel like the best way is to not add comparison to the internal fight that already isn't fair.  
I never feel better when I have found myself guilty of it.
I am blessed to actually have choices at all.

So here's to hoping your choices are working for you and that your struggles will be manageable.
Also here's to me airing my transgressions and hoping if I've done it to you, please forgive me :)
Uh oh, two of my little "choices" are about to wake up so I have to run.

Keep an eye out for a post about this debate on Take 10 With Tricia, later this week after she watches tomorrow's episode of Anderson, on DVR.  It is supposed to be about Mommy Wars of some kind.




Tricia said...

Finally had time and attention to read this...awesome post. I tweeted it! :)

Krista said...

Thanks Tricia.