I Finally Understand the “Mommy Wars”

I try to stay out of all the drama that surrounds, or perhaps creates, the internet conversations that occur, but sometimes it sneaks in to my bubble.

In my peripheral, I can see there is another conversation about working moms vs. non-working moms (i.e.: moms at home… don’t get me started on that).

I also see continual snippets of drama concerning moms at the playground, in the school yard, or at zumba class (personally I think zumba is the cause of most of the mom issues in the world).

Drama, a continuous stream of drama.

Attempting to escape it all for a little while, I laced up my purple runners and hit the road. Music in my ears and a sunny ocean side run was perfect for clearing my head, or so I thought.

But still, these little flashes kept coming at me, and as they did it brought me to a conclusion.

I know why there is drama, and why the majority of it is centred around women, with kids under 5 (*I did not do a scientific study to prove this, but I bet if someone did, it would be true).

Want to know why?
It’s because we women are screwed up during that time period.  Really, really messed up.

How do I know this?
Because I was one of them.

I remember after popping out the babies how everything changed for me.  I suddenly couldn’t believe I was anything OTHER than mom to baby #1, or #2,  or #3…  It was my entire essence. My whole being.

I didn’t want to have conversations about anything else. My every waking thought was filled with my baby. I had so many questions, and so much passion for the answers I believed.

My “babies” are now 12, 9 and 6, and over the past few years I finally feeling like I have broken out of the web that was “motherhood” and re-entered a full and varied existence.

Dramatic, yes, but very true.

Back then I suddenly understood how people could risk their lives protecting dolphins, or chain themselves to trees to stop the sharp blades from cutting them down.

I was a mother bear, I was obsessed. Nothing would sway me from my course.

And when you are so singularly focused, even small moments can become overwhelming. Little whispers turn into outright violence, disagreements turn into nuclear war. . . well, of the mommy variety.

And unfortunately it wasn’t just me. There were hundreds of us.  We were everywhere.

My weekly spin class had 7 of us, all juggling for position on the “good bike”, bitter and angry if our little one needed to nurse and we missed out and had to go in the front row (where the instructor stared into our eyes with every command).

Walking through the rec centre during kids skate time was like trying to navigate through a field laced with land mines.

We were a destructive force. . . who liked to mix margaritas at noon on a Thursday.

I look back on that period of my life with anxiety, and embarrassment.  I was no more in control of my emotions than my hungry toddler, although her feelings were always fixed with a nap and some goldfish crackers.

So many arguments, so much anger, and all about nothing. We ruined friendships over diaper styles and Easter baskets.  World War III erupted if someone else brought cupcakes to school if you had been the one who signed up to bring them.

We were out of control.

And we were perfectly normal.

Ladies.  We were a little cuckoo, and that’s all right. It is part of working out that whole “being a mom thing”. We were trying to remember who we were, what we did and OMG HOW DOES SOMEONE DEAL WITH ALL THESE EMOTIONS?!?

Shit hurt back then. (Sorry for the curse word, mom.)

But we grew out of it.

Our 40’s are here  – or coming for some of you youngsters – and in our forties, shit doesn’t hurt that much anymore. In fact, we learn how to not give a shit about most things at all.

We understand that someone’s anger towards us belongs to THEM, not US.  That drama is created because we give other people far too much credit and power in controlling the universe.

Our kids are growing up and we no longer care as much about what shoes Johnny’s mom buys. Now our kids care, and we are the ones telling them to be their own people.

We grew up. And growing up is good. We are finding ourselves again, and leaving the drama behind. We are moving on, understanding that what matters is what we decide matters.  We finally believe that yes, everyone CAN make their own decisions.  We stop giving our opinion, unless we are asked. We become experts, valid and proven experts. . . not just instinctual beings who rely on “Google” or the playground as our #1 resource.

But thankfully we still make margaritas at noon on a Thursday.

 

 

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