I assume you saw the Time cover yesterday with the uppity-looking blonde lady breastfeeding her burly son? The message was "Are you mom enough?" Let's discuss this. I'm trying to be mom enough. Well, according to Time's standards anyway.
- Blonde: Check. Thanks to peroxide and Moccocan Oil, I am able to maintain that generically attractive look that has the real effect of making me invisible. Want to hide an average face? Go blonde! It has been my experience when you are an interchangeable white blonde lady people ascribe their feelings of interchangeable white blonde ladies to you and come out swinging or swooning depending on the person. Secret: I'm really a brunette with a big nose and lots of opinions.
- Thin: I try. Who doesn't? I don't kill myself at the gym like my friend Stacey, but I've managed to lose 43 pounds of pregnancy weight by a) getting the baby out b) eating a vegan diet which includes guacamole and peanut butter on occasion and c) liposuction. No, I'm not kidding. I'll just tell you right now I'm scheduled for lipo next week and I ain't apologizing. Commence the hate in my comments section, but after being asked if I'm pregnant for the third time this tiny pouch of immovable fat in my lower abdomen is out of here, bitches. JUDGE.
- Breastfeeding: Okay, I did this one because I'm lazy. Seriously, washing bottles and mixing all that powder was too much work for this mom. I'd rather just stick the baby on there and go about my internettin'. (NAK is a common acronym for "nursing at keyboard" to show you how pervasive this hobby is.) Did I nurse my baby into toddlerhood? No, because I am vain. Did you see the above two items?
This brings me to my real question. How are we supposed to be "everything". Fit. Young. Accomplished. Beautiful. Super Moms. Man-snaggers. Friends. Making organic meals made from scratch, fulfilling our personal goals while simultaneously accomplishing cardio five times a week, keeping our homes and clothes and potty mouths clean? Women are supposed to be educated, well-traveled, well-read, conventionally attractive, pursued by a man, give birth 2.3 times, nurse for years and still somehow come out on the other end of all of this looking like the woman on the Time cover. Are you kidding me? It takes all of my hours in the day to keep my kids decently fed and maintain an outward appearance of a generous 6.5 on the MILF scale.
I could never be all that on the cover of Time. And to be honest, I'd give half my life to be Hilary Clinton, the real mom who does it all. (As for blonde and lipo, I do it because I want to and I can - but Hilary I could never be.)
Am I a weak person for feeling bad about falling short of these societal expectations or am I strong for semi-accomplishing a few? Are these ubiquitous expectations a product of a patriarchal society or mined from the desires of us mothers ourselves? I suspect the answer, as always, is somewhere in the middle.
Excuse me while zip off for a day at the zoo. Hey, that's cardio right?