April 1, 2016

On Being A Mom

The other day I was thinking about how different it has to be, being a mom in our generation vs our parents {or even older} generations.  Times have changed so drastically in the past 20-30 years and I can't help but wonder what being a stay-at-home mom looked like then compared to now.

When my mom was a new mom there was no Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapcaht, blogging.  Where did she look for advice when her newborn had a weird discharge coming from her sweet little eye?  She most likely called my grandma or maybe even the pediatrician because there was no Google search to tell her that it was something that could be "cured" with a warm compress.  My mom was the first in her circle of friends to have a baby so who did she bond with during those sleepless nights?  I vividly remember turning to Twitter- where all the other new moms in the universe were up with their babies tweeting about the ungodly hour and where People Magazine never sleeps.  My mom didn't have that sort of entertainment.  There were no blogs to read to help them realize that what they were feeling was normal.  There were no Facebook pages dedicated to fun activities in their surrounding cities on the days where they just had.to.get.out.of.the.house.  And on the days they just couldn't muster up the energy to pack up the kids they didn't have YouTube, iPads, Netflix, etc to occupy them long enough for a shower.  How did they shower?

I know from stories I've heard that my grandma didn't even leave the house when she was a stay-at-home mom.  My grandparents had one car and my grandpa worked {out of state} during the week leaving my grandma home with three little kids and no way to escape means of transportation.  I mean, can you even imagine?!  I know my kids and I would go nuts if we couldn't leave the house for days on end.

That is not to say that I think it's "totes amazeballs" {I hate that term btw} to be a stay-at-home mom these days. I mean, I do, but I also think it comes with it's own set of challenges that our parents probably never had/felt/dealt with.

Did our parents deal with the Mommy Wars?  Did people shame them for bottle feeding because "breast is best"?  Were working moms judged and did they feel "guilty" or were stay-at-home moms judged and therefore felt unfulfilled?  Did they ever question if they were enough because they saw Sally Smith down the street "doing it all"?   Did they feel like bad moms for wanting some "me time"?

I know my mom says often, "your generation" in reference to things like gender reveal parties and over the top Pinterest ideas and while I love those things I can see why she finds them annoying.  I sometimes wish for simpler times.  A time when I didn't feel the pressure to keep up with the latest craze/Pinterest holiday/activity.  Those "pressures", however, pale in comparison {I feel} to the advantages of raising kids in 2016.

I love being able to go to my moms FB group and find an activity for the kids and I to do on any given day.  I like being able to Vox my friends in other states and vent about my crazy kids.  I love finding new ways to entertain my kids via blogs.  And I also love sharing those things with other people.  If I can somehow make other moms feel "normal" by sharing here or on my other social media outlets then that makes me happy.

I do know a lot of things haven't changed much between then and now.  The lonely feeling you get throughout the day.  The constant craving for adult conversation.  The days where showers just don't happen. The feeling of "am I doing this right?".  The hope that you are just doing something right.  The overwhelming sense of pride when your kid{s} hit a milestone or overcome a fear.  The knowledge that we are all doing the best we can/know how.


  1. Like you Mom, my Mom also finds all of this stuff we have access to these days annoying as well. I am sure my MIL can chime in and say the same. My grandmother (my mom's mom), who raised 11 children, would shake her head at some of this stuff too. Truth be told, they didn't have access to all this crap nor did they need it. They found ways to raise their children well without the need for technology and websites. The "mommy wars" are garbage, whether they happened then and happen now. The technology (blogs, Pinterest, Facebook, websites) has definitely created extra nonsense that need not be there, and personally, I think, has not served any of us any favors. I just think the generations of moms before us had to work a little harder and get more creative. They did not have the work done for them (ie. let me see what is happening on FB today in my area and go). They were forced to get creative and seek those activities. I think they had to work for it, and the work was not done for them. It was simple, and I like it. It is not about being a good or bad mom. We all have our moments where we are rockstars to our kids, and other moments where we are hiding in closets and drinking wine (or I can speak of myself here). I will say, my mom certainly did not stick me in front of a DVD player or IPAD at the doctor's office because she "did not want to deal with me". She found ways to entertain and play with me while we waited. And, we certainly did not watch movies in the car. I will also say, we took a trip to Disney a while ago. It is about an 11 hour drive from where we live. We decided we would not let the kids watch movies on the way there. It was the MOST fun time in the car I think we have ever had! We talked to each other!!! Imagine that! We played games! My children LOOKED out the WINDOW of the car!! Lol! We loved it. We have since then removed all the devices from our cars, and we do not let the kids watch stuff in the car. No devices. We listen to music and books on tape, and that is MUCH better than anything. More important, we actually talk to each other and have conversations! I share this to not say this to not make anyone feel bad, but I like simple because simple WORKS. It was clear as day on that trip. We thought it would be the car trip from hell, when really, it was the best trip ever. That is why your Mom and my Mom shake their heads and are annoyed at our generation of moms. The lack of all of these things in her (and probably your Mom's day) made them work a little harder than we had to. Goodness, I think of my grandmother in Thailand and raising 11 children. My grandparents and their children (my Mom) had to work HARD. Like with their hands. In the fields. They had to sustain their way of life on their own, without all the nice stuff we have access to, and they had to real hard labor to survive. Can you imagine what they learned about work ethic? Responsibility? Family? How to (fill in the blank)? My uncles are freaking amazing gardeners and work their butts off. My Mom works like a horse and is the strongest person I know. She is my hero in every sense of the word. We are all doing the best we can, but I think our generation has taken things a bit too far. My mom laughs at the gender reveal parties, and maybe, your Mom may do the same. Her question is, why? Why are they necessary? It is a waste of money and time in her eyes. When I think about it, I agree. Why do I need to "reveal" anything and PAY a bunch of money for a party to do something so simple? Why can't I just say, "hey, we having a boy" then thank people for their positive thoughts and prayers. Simple. I just think we have gone too far, and I can certainly see the annoyance of past generations of moms towards our generation.

  2. I couldn't have ever said it better... My Mom and I had this kind of conversation the other day. Between my own Mom, my husbands Mom and Grandmother I constantly hear their stories. My mom used to record her soap operas during the day so that when I woke up in the middle of the night she had something to watch because there was a period of time at night the TV was just static. I can't even imagine, we take for granted Netflix and all night TV to flip on when a child wakes up and is raring to go in the middle of the night. That among other things really made me put everything into perspective!

    LOVE this post so much!