Friday, April 28, 2006

No, Judgmental is Not My Middle Name.

EDITED: I think my post is unclear. I AM a stay at home mom. I think that is the best choice for my family. I own my own business, but go in one day a week. All other work I do from home. I am not judging a mom for staying home. I am commenting on the fact that there is a breed of mom, who has no shred of personality left outside of their role as a mom.
The blogging world has been abuzz with talks of the mommy wars and pleas of “can’t we all just get along,” – What kind of self-respecting Mama-blogger would I be if I didn’t put my two cents in on the whole issue. Actually, it is a situation I am faced with in my world of motherdom and I needed to rant, and thought I would tie it in with the whole mommy wars thing so I looked hip and current. Pretty slick, huh? Anyway….

I want to add a new twist on the whole thing. Since I have moved to this lovely little town, I have been confronted with a different type of mom. I’ll call her the Mom, with a capital “M”. I know this type of mom exists everywhere; I just have been smacked in the face with it as of late because it is so prevalent here.

Mom, with a capital “M” is the mom who exists only in her capacity as a wife and mother. She has no interests or personality value outside her role as matriarch of her little brood. She, of course stays at home with the kids, which I am all on board with… However…She is so totally absorbed into her role as a mother, that all other pieces of her fall away.

Her social life consists of MOPS group, Little League, and dance class. Conversations revolve around the next Mom’s Club function or which grocery store has ground beef on sale.

If I sound like I’m being overly judgmental, it’s because I am. But this kind of woman just irks me. I know being a true feminist is all about choices…. and choosing to be a homemaker is still a valid choice. I am not condemning that by any means. What I absolutely can’t stand to see is when a woman ceases to be a functioning member of society outside of her little family bubble. Be a homemaker, but take a class, volunteer, go out with child-free friends. Something. For goodness sake be who you were before you had kids – at least in some capacity.

And to put the final nail in my coffin…how long do you really think your husband will find you an interesting and stimulating friend and peer, if the only conversations you are holding are regarding Junior having soccer practice or Mary still not using the potty to go poop? Yeah, he should love you no matter what…blah, blah, blah. But get real. He fell in love with you because of your personality. When you sacrifice that at the altar of motherhood, you are doing both you and your family a disservice.

And on the other side of the coin…don’t shun me because I have a life outside of my kids. Why hold it against me that I am trying to work out a balance? So you think I sound bitter? Maybe, but I’m not. Because as nice as they are, conversations with a Capital M Mom are a struggle and social activities are downright painful. I prefer hanging out with women who are able to answer to something aside from “Mom!”

So while the Capital M Moms in my neighborhood feel quiet disdain for me, I feel pity for them. I’ll take disdain over pity any day.

Look at that. I finally update and it is all filled with judgment and self-righteousness. I hate to rain on the “we’re all moms, so let’s just support each other” parade, but the Stepford wives around here have really gotten under my skin. And I was due for a nice rant. It is very cleansing. So flame away. I can take it.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Holy Crap! An Update!

Thirteen things that I have been doing when I should have been updating here.

1. Blowing my nose. Every. Five. Seconds. It is hard to type when you are walking around honking into a crumpled tissue like weird old Uncle Lou who wears his polyester, plaid pants pulled right up under his saggy man-boobs.

2. Schleping my daughter to work with me. We have all been passing around the same snotty, goopy, painful affliction. Whoever is oozing and wheezing the least goes into my store. When I go in, the small fry goes too. Man, do we get a lot of work done.

3. Trying to sell my store . Wanna' buy it? Really. You would be great at it. (I have a very promising candidate right now. I am soliciting prayers and the crossing of fingers, toes, and other crossable appendages. Oh please let it work out.)

4. My son's science fair project. It is due Friday. We have not yet. Crap.

5. Playing referee to two kids who are too sick to go to school, but too unsick to be home. Actual exchanges this week:

Daughter: Cough. Cough. Hack.

Son: COVER YOUR MOUTH! I don't want your stupid germs.


Son: Cough. Wheeze. Hack.

Daughter: Cover your mouth.


Daughter: (breathing)

Son: Stop it.

Daughter: (breathing)

Son: I said stop it.

Daughter: (More breathing)


Me: Hey! Stop yelling at your sister.

Son: But mom, she's snarfuling.

Snarfuling? I listened more carefully. She was snarfuling.

6. Getting our new website up and running. We are now finally taking credit cards. It only took two weeks of pleading and bargaining...cursing and cajoling with the credit card processing thing. You'd think they would have the process a little more streamlined seeing as that is WHAT THEY DO! Anywoo... (Don't you hate it when people type anywhoo. You know they never actually say it...why type it? Anywhoo..)

7. Tripping over my still unpacked suitcase from our visit back to CA. Add to that scrounging for wear, since I have not yet done my laundry. I'm about down to a pair of acid-washed jeans and a New Kids on the Block t-shirt.

8. Letting my brain be bipolar....My husband got a great job in CA. We can go home! Woo Hoo!...He starts July in the world will we sell my store...our house...move...Ack. I'm ecstatic. I'm freaked. I'm partying. I hyperventilatng.

9. Reading other blogs - the ones where people actually bother to stagger in and update every so often....unlike some other crappy blog I know of. <---me. I mean me.

10. Dieting. My husband and I have jumped on the Loose-my-big-fat-butt bandwagon. We are doing the age-old calorie counting diet. According to the formula I get like, a Triscuit and a grape for the whole day, a-la the Olsen twins. I blew my whole day yesterday by putting peanut butter on my english muffin. Those little packs of diet cookies and crakers with only 100 calories per pack are not half bad....especially, when you eat two or three packs with a Frappucino.

11. Procrastinating on a growing pile of emails I need to return. If you emailed me about a blog t-shirt and I didn't get back to you...I am not rude and inconsiderate. I promise. Just overwhelmed. I have all of the emails saved in a folder to respond to. I will do it soon. I will. Also the lovely lady who emailed me about living near my store and wanting to meet up for coffee. I have your email flagged to reply to also. I am not lame. Really.

12. Handing my daughter tissues. Or scraping crusty boogers off of her face. Or my shoulder. Yes, my life is just as glamourous as it sounds.

13. Awww, crap. I don't have a number thirteen...and it's late....and I'm tired (whine, sniffle) I will just insert a random fact for you to enjoy...
There are more chickens than people in the world. Discuss.

Happy Thursday Thirteen. Sorry I am an absentee blogger. I would promise to get better at updating, but you know from past experience, I lie!

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Monday, April 03, 2006

Death Becomes Her

I have apparently contracted the Black Plague. I can't remember being this sick in quite some time. The kids, of course, are on Spring Break. That means I have both of them. Home. With me. All day. With me.

After a night of sleeping like I was buried alive while breathing through coffee stirrers, I got up to face the day. I stumbled downstairs, oozing my own weight in mucous, and quickly realized we (meaning me) had a problem. No food. No food during Spring Break. Bad. Very bad. Had I known I was going to fall victim to the Black Death I would have stocked up on fruit snacks. I flopped onto the couch and commenced with the moaning and nose blowing. Moan. Blow. Blow. Moan. Then the kids woke up.

I decided that this situation could be handled if I just sat my children down appealed to their sense of reason. After all, they are not savages and could clearly understand the gravity of the situation...what with the Grim Reaper lurking ominously behind me amid the piles of crumpled tissues.

"Kids, mommy is feeling pretty sick today. I am pretty much out of commission and will need you two to pitch in and help out. I know you guys can do this. I am really depending on you. I need your cooperation. I need you to help each other out and do for yourselves a lot today."

They nodded earnestly. See? No problem.

Five seconds passed.

"Mama, can you get me cereal?"
"I can't find my Gameboy game. I left it right here. Moooom! Can you help me!?"
Houston, we have a problem. Rotten kids.
Thus began the whining and pleading. And the kids were no picnic either.

I knew I was going to have to get my hands on some food...and decongestant. Lots of decongestant. I was forced to get dressed and drag out to the grocery store. The kids were offered the privilege of picking two snack items each if they could just cooperate and get us in and out of the store quickly. This lead to much switching and bartering.
"No, wait. I want to change my cereal for fruit by the foot"
"I don't want theeese. I want cookies."
With selections made and $30 worth of cold medicine in our cart, we made it to the checkout lane. The checkout lane which was decorated with all sorts of useless Easter basket filler crap. The useless Easter basket filler crap which was the root of my daughter's screaming fit. I slunk out of the store with a screaming 2 year old and tissue stuffed up one nostril. Ignoring the stares. Oh, like you have never had a day like this, you judgmental bastards. I breathe my Plague on you.

In the car, coming home, I explain to my little darlings that I will need them to help me bring in the groceries - 90% of which are snacks for them. My son brought in one bag. The bag with his cookies in it. My daughter unloaded a bag because it was too heavy. She carried in the empty shopping bag, leaving it's contents strewn about the garage. Little ingrates.

"Mom, can you open these?"
"No, as a matter of fact I can't - seeing as how I am dying."

They spent the next hour spilling cereal, goldfish crackers, and various juices all
over the kitchen while I attempted to remain conscious after my pounding my cocktail of cold medicines.

The natives were getting restless. Well, restless-er, more get the idea. My son began his wear mom down technique because he wanted to go out front and play with his friends. My daughter went in the backyard naked and refused to come in, despite my frantic waving of Princess panties. My son screamed at his sister and refused to comply when sent to his room. Leaving me chasing him around our yard, screaming threats like a lunatic. Finally, I caught up with him, planting the Vulcan death grip on the back of his neck, when a car passing slowed, and stopped, apparently hoping to intervene in my obvious abuse. Great. Just great.

The only way for this day to be saved is for me to take a shot of Nyquil, and pass out drooling, while dreaming of Matthew McConaughey spoon-feeding me soup and cleaning my house. Heck, who am I kidding, I'll settle for just the Nyquil.