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Post #6: Mom-cronyms
SAHM, WAHM, WFHM, the Joys of Being Mom-Labeled
Don’t you just love it when people feel the need to toss you in a neat little category? I have been a married mom and a single mom. I have been a full-time working mom, a full-time student mom, a part-time working mom, an unemployed mom, a stay at home mom and most recently a work from home mom. Notice any similarities? I was a mom the whole time. Whether I was working 15-hour days, traveling around the country or sitting on my couch typing away; I was, and am, a mom. We all are.
I could sit here for the next twenty minutes explaining the pros and cons of each label; they all have them, but instead I’m just going to ask you stop. Stop labeling yourself and stop labeling the other moms you encounter. We’re all trying our best… Well I guess, not deadbeat moms. They don’t get as much flack as deadbeat dads, but we all know they exist.
Anyway, that’s not what I’m here to talk about. I’m talking about the moms who are giving it their all. Despite whatever acronym people try to shove down your throat. Whether you’re hiding in your car to cry or standing in the bleachers cheering on your kid (even if you hope they lose so you don’t have to go to another damn ice-cream social, again, no judgement here) you deserve a pat on the back because you are doing what you have to. You are doing what you think is right by your children and that takes a level of badass that is unique to moms. (Dads can be awesome too, but they have their own badass ways, this is ours!)
Maybe you still have small children, you hold them so tight even though the internet says they need their space. You don’t have to worry about social pressures at school and sporting events or them seeing you cry as they scoff at your Brussel Sprout Surprise (there’s no surprise… they’re just Brussel Sprouts). But you still feel this crazy pressure to be perfect as a parent. After all, they people they grow up to be is 100% contingent on you not making a single mistake during these fundamental years. Right?
Maybe your kids are in school. You are dealing with social pressures. You are trying to find the balance between giving them enough space that they have their privacy, but not so much that you can’t protect them from the world. You’re dealing with bullies (either your child is being bullied, standing up bullies, telling on bullies or being the bully *yikes*). You’re dealing with children turning into adults and, from what I’ve seen personally, this is horrible for the fragile, and yet amazingly resilient, mom-psyche. You are seeing, first-hand, the people they are going to become.
Or maybe your kids are grown. Maybe you have already done it all. You successfully got your children all the way from 0 to 18+ and you can finally sit back and enjoy your freedom. Ha, just kidding. I am 33 and I can tell you, my poor mother has to go visit her sister on the other side of the country to get away from me. Even that doesn’t work, I’ve been messaging her all day.
It doesn’t matter which of these categories you identify with. It doesn’t matter what crazy stupid grouping of letters have been thrown out into the cosmos to define you. I get it. I have letter hopped my entire mom-life and, at the end of each day, acronyms aside, whether it was a great mom-day or a really really really bad mom-day, I was their mom. Their working, studying, job hunting, cooking, baking, crying, screaming, laughing, laundry folding, pee cleaning, book writing, day dreaming, coffee guzzling mom.
And it is the greatest job in the world (even when it’s not).