Life With Nine Kids

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Super Mom

I recently added an occupation to my Facebook profile. I already had 'Stay at Home Mom' as my job but Facebook asked me to get more specific by asking for my position at 'Stay at Home Mom.' Without thinking I instinctively typed "homemaker/awesome wife/super mom." And I've been thinking about it ever since. My husband thinks I'm awesome, and I think I'm awesome (a good portion of the time at least), and now I'm telling everyone that I indeed am awesome -and super. Awesomely super-full of myself perhaps?

 We sure are fed mixed signals about being great and feeling good about ourselves, aren't we? I was fed a healthy dose of self esteem as a grade schooler. The 'you can be anything you want, you can do anything you want, you are special, feel good about yourself' pep talks from school and parents were rampant in the 80's.  All of that self esteem building only to find out later that if we actually feel that way, if we actually have a can-do attitude, and if we actually feel awesome, we are really in a way just putting other people down, and we might be conceded. As life rolls on I've figured out that for just as many people that tell you to feel good about yourself there is a line of people that tell you to feel guilty about it --or to quit making them feel guilty because of your happiness or achievements!

 I have noticed there are lots of articles and blog posts online dedicated to the myth of the super mom; posts about how no one is perfect and about how being a "good enough mom" is good enough. There seems to be a lot of moms out there writing to inspire others to feel good about their decisions, to assure women that we are all fighting the same battle, and that as women, wives, and mothers we don't all have to be: cookie baking, elaborate party throwing, bathroom scrubbing, play date hopping, do-it-all, super moms. I think some of these articles bring a lot to the table, but at the same time some of the things people write aren't very nice. Many of these articles claim that Super Moms don't exist, that moms that seem to juggle life with a smile are fake people or lying, I have even read that Super Moms are actually bullies in disguise trying to make everyone else feel bad. So when I described my occupation as Super Mom I kinda felt bad about it. So I thought about it and I think what most moms probably don't know is that they are Super Moms! Nearly all moms work HARD, so I think moms should start acting like they are super. A mother's work is never done and being a mother is important. Remind me again what job is more important?

I get the sentiment but I still take issue with the "good enough" comment. Who wants to be a good enough mom? Or a good enough doctor? Or a good enough hair stylist? Or a good enough firefighter? I my eyes being the best you can be and being good enough are different things. One is inspiring willpower and accomplishment, the other implies a lackluster attitude and settling for less. I think we should encourage each other and our own selves to be good, even great, each in our own individual ways. No matter what there will always be someone better than all of us (someone smarter, prettier, funnier, more creative, more organized, more patient, more witty, Etc.). But everyone has the potential within them to be the best they can be and feel good about it; I think that is awesome. It is super.

We are all super in different ways.
 Okay some of us might not be super, and some should work on that. Like if you binge drink around your kids, physically or mentally harm your children, hit your partner, or if you abandon your kid or otherwise put your child in danger. In those cases you probably aren't very super mom-ish. In those cases people need to reach out for some help. Generally speaking though moms love their kids and protect their kids. There ARE cruddy moms (and people) out there but generally speaking us moms strive to care for our kids and work hard at it. I work hard at it. I work hard a being fair and being consistent. I work hard at being a good example for my kids. I work hard at having a clean house, a fun life and good kids. I work hard and sometimes I feel really awesome about it, other times I feel like it's never enough and sometimes it's totally exhausting. Sometimes I make little mistakes, sometimes I make big mistakes. What I do know is that as long as I'm trying and working hard I am accomplishing super things. I don't want to be good enough, I want to be the best that *I* can be. As long as I spend time and effort making myself a better person and show love to my family *I* feel full of awesome, and we should all feel full of awesome!

So what is a super mom?

 This is such a loaded term, and it means different things to all of us, and that's good and okay. A Super Mom to me is almost any mom really. A Super Mom is brave enough to love deeply, to try, to cry, to laugh, to be brave enough to be strong and brave enough to be weak. A Super Mom still makes mistakes and knows how to own up to those mistakes. A Super Mom comes in all shapes and sizes. A Super Mom should know that no mater what happens today that tomorrow is another day. Super Moms pace the floor with teething, crying babies and have to sometimes clean up barf at 2am. Super Moms teach kindness to their kids, Super Moms love their kids, Super Moms worry about their kids. Super Moms hold hands with their kids. Super Moms buy store bought play-doh, or make homemade play dough. Super Moms make homemade pizza, or store bought pizza. Super Moms bake from scratch brownies, or store bought brownies. Some Super Moms scrub their houses weekly and some don't. Some Super Moms wear make-up and some don't. Some Super Moms make homemade baby food, some buy it at the store. Super Moms do the best they can with what talents they have. Super Moms make the best decisions they can with the information they have. When a Super Mom makes a mistake she tries better next time.

Traits of Super Heroes

A super hero possess extraordinary powers and abilities... 
Mothers do
A super hero has a strong moral code including a willingness to risk one's own safety in the service of good without expectation of reward...
Mothers do
A super hero has a motivation, such as a sense of responsibility...

Mothers do
A super hero can have both weaknesses and limited capabilities. Super heroes can make mistakes, misjudge and can sometimes lose!
Mothers do

(WHAT? Super heroes can be weak? Defeated? Tired? On the verge of giving up? Yes, and guess what? They are still SUPER!)

I love being a Super Mom (and wife). I happen to enjoy staying home and being a traditional homemaking mother and wife. Not everyone does, but I do. I'm not super at all of it all the time, no one is super at what they do ALL of the time. But in general I feel super, happy, and accomplished at things that are important to me. I have my good days and bad days and I know everyone else does too. I shouldn't be a threat to other Super Moms for saying that I am super nor them to me. Superheros aren't comparing capes with each other and Super Moms shouldn't either. We are all full of awesome.

If you aren't a self proclaimed Super Mom, then maybe it's time you became one. Because if you are a mom and you *LOVE* your child(ren) you probably are a Super Mom in disguise. :)

And now after ignoring my children to write this I'm going to try and reclaim Super Mom feelings within myself and muster up some energy and patience to regain control of the household since my kids are fighting, one is naked, and they are all bored and complaining! Have a great day Super Moms!

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