Tuesday, March 23, 2010

HIT A HOME RUN

I have yet to hear a man ask for advice
on how to combine marriage and a career.”
Gloria Steinem


Marriage and a career?

“Sheesh!”

That’s nothing. Try adding kids into the equation. Suddenly you’ll move from simple addition into the miraculous world of modern-day math, only this time you’ll be using the metric system.

Impossible.

Just ask any junior high teacher.

And, calling an Employed Mom a “working mother” is more than redundant—it’s an insult.

The sixties might have been celebrated as the bra-burning revolution but then why is Victoria’s Secret so popular today?

So, hooray for the flower-power season and three cheers for freedom!

Only I must be missing something.

I still feel like I’m chained to that never-ending chore called housework.

Maybe it’s because my Mom was way ahead of her time. In the sixties, she was raising 9 kids and running her own beauty business.

Mom was an original feminist - before the word was even invented. I just don’t know how she did it.

She’d have us up and ready for school—every day. All nine of us, wore clean clothes to class, came home to find a home-cooked dinner on the table, and could always count on finding food in the fridge.

I can’t begin to compete with her. There’s only one possible explanation: Mom must have been related to Samantha Stevens. Even now, nearly 50 years later, I’m thinking she had to be using some of that magic.

I’m supposed to be living in the New-Age, with the help of mechanical modern-day magic, I have an entire world-wide-web of technology right at my fingertips.

There’s only one problem.

I’m traveling down that information highway, at hyper-cyberspeed, while I'm supposed to be wearing high heels and looking sexy--forget it America! This isn't Fantasy Island.

Even using my cellphone, email, mapquest, and GPS, I’m still lost.

LIFE is a giant four-letter word: W.O.R.K.

But the real enemy of every Mom is T.I.M.E. and I have the evidence, written across my face. Just look at me, you can see that roadmap to the information highway etched across my face. I like to think of those little lines and wrinkles as a Mom’s badges—so forget the Botox baby. Wear those scars proudly.

I’ve come to the conclusion that nothing in life is ever free and women’s liberation came with a hefty price-tag.

Freedom isn’t free—it’s a lot of hard work.

And, we might have come a long way baby. But where the heck have we ended up?

Moms, today, just want to be it all—and do even more—for everyone.

I think about women—especially every M.O.M. who holds down an eight hour job and have to flip that word around to say W.O.W.!

Being a Mom is one occupation where none of the usual rules apply. What other job offers no training, has you on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with no time-off or vacation – remember there’s not even a bathroom break from this occupation? And there’s no financial incentive of any kind to compel you into this career. You can’t even expect a paycheck, commission or bonus at the end of the month.

Yet educated people actually choose this career choice and, when they finally are initiated into the sisterhood of the traveling pants—it’s really the waistband that’s traveling not the lady inside them. But we all celebrate the onslaught of morning sickness, nightly trips to the toilet and stretch pants with a party, shared as a shower with a bunch of other women.

It’s an unfortunate reality that Dads are rarely divine and everyone is bound to make a few mistakes - which kids will point out for years to come.

You might think its funny one day, probably when the kids move out. And, Mom didn’t really have a magic wand because parents are simply people.

So, in this game, called raising kids there can be no bench players. And, if reality pitches a problem across your home plate, swing with your sense of humor - that way, you may not hit a Home Run but at least you’ll never strike out.

5 comments:

Bish Denham said...

Parenting is the most important job there is. If it isn't obvious to people how important it is, they must have their heads in a dark place.... All we have to do is look at all the troubled children.

I honor and respect all mothers who have chosen and/or are able to stay at home and raise their kids. As my mother used to say, "Why would I want someone raising my kids and teaching them their bad habits? If my kids are going to have any bad habits, they are going to be mine!"

Susan R. Mills said...

I love this post! I've been feeling a little useless lately because I don't bring in any income for our family. You have made me remember how important my job as a mother is. Thank you.

Kelly said...

Great post, Kim! Moms usually are the primary caretakers of the children, working or not working. It's exhausting and rewarding. Hurray for Moms! (and that definitely includes you, Kim! I can tell how much your family means to you and what a close knit family you have created!)

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Funny, isn't it, how the domestic work and raising children to become good and decent people isn't considered valuable WORK in our economy.

Suzanne Casamento said...

Wow. Your mom had a business and nine kids and was able to run a household. That's incredible. I'm thinking you're right about the Samantha Stevens magic.

I don't know how moms do it. It's the most important job there is and it's unfortunately under applauded. Hats off to you!