In the mom community it’s becoming more popular to label what kind of mom you are. There is the “organic” mom who weaves her kids’ clothes from the fibers of left over fruit peels and only feeds her kids foods that fell from trees and died of natural causes. There is the “stressed out” mom that is in a continuous state of stress with her kids, marriage, and life. There is the “drama mama” that creates drama out of nothing, for any number of reasons. Her life is basically one long episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians (the later seasons. The first few were legit). There is the “has it together mom” who consistently has a clean house, a full time job, cooks dinner every night, and made six dozen cupcakes for the bake sale last night. Lastly there is the “hot mess” mom. The mom who can’t seem to ever get it together for her kid or spouse or herself. She has the kid that always has chocolate all over their face, pouring herself out of the car while trying to get gum off her pants and Cheez Whiz off her shirt, and is yelling, “I’m here!! I’m here! Sorry, sorry, sorry”. For the most part I think I have the latter of these mom labels.
In all honesty, I know that I’m not a full fledge hot mess mom. I just feel like with the mom groups that I’m a part of I feel like I am the hot mess mom, at least a little bit. I feel like I’m always dragging behind. That my kid always does the, “What are you doing?” Moment. If I had my choice I would be the got it together mom. Heart in my eyes aspiration. I would love to be able to follow the housewife’s guide put forth in the fifties that entails that you should always keep your house ready for any unexpected company. I go to other mom’s houses walk in and think, “Why can’t my house look like this?” I know I’ve spoken about this before. For a while I blamed the kid, she was a great excuse. Being a mom is really hard and you don’t really get a lot of time for cleaning and organizing. At least I thought so.
A couple weeks ago something in me clicked. I don’t know why it clicked or how necessarily, but something clicked. I started really being the got it together mom. I cleaned the areas Eva had exploded that day after she went to bed. With help from Tim, the kitchen was clean at the end of the night. We all had clean clothes. I was doing chores and projects I had been meaning to do for months. Randomly, I found myself elbow deep in our bathroom closet cleaning it out at 9 o’clock at night. Eva and I had things to do and places to go. We were going on adventures and coming home to a sane house. This past week I got into doing my make up and hair like a normal human. It was great. I felt like I was beginning to really get it together and have it all! Then this past weekend came and I realized, I was exhausted.
I was utterly exhausted. I walked through the house seeing all things that needed to be cleaned and thinking every time I passed a teetering pile, “I just cleaned that!” It was like pushing the ocean back with a strainer. I tried so hard to stay on top of everything and still be a mom. Unfortunately I found myself saying, “I’m sorry hunny, I have to do these dishes.” Or “In a minute, Eva. I need to do this laundry” far more than I ever wanted to. I want to show Eva that life goes on around her, not that life revolves around her (no matter HOW true that statement is). I also want to show her that she is entirely more important than vacuuming. I was waking up in the morning and before I knew it we were putting Eva to bed.
At some point I had to realize and decide if being the got it together mom was the mom label that I wanted and one that I could keep without loosing my sanity and time with Eva. We put these labels on ourselves and each other because it makes it easier to figure ourselves and each other out. To feel out what kind of person you are, who that person is, and how to treat them or react to their kids. Really at the end of the day the label that is best suited for all mothers is simply, mom. That’s it. We’re moms. I’m a mom. I am just trying to survive each day. I am trying to make it to 7 o’clock when we start getting Eva ready for bed. I am trying to make Eva a good person to put out into this world. I trying to still have a productive marriage. I am trying.
I tried to be a got it together mom and it did not fit. I tried to accept being a hot mess mom but that did not fit either. I wondered what label was in between these two types of moms. Realizing that there wasn’t one because we are all these labels all throughout the days or weeks. There are going to be some weeks where I do really have it together and feel like I could have a reality show showing the world that I am on top of it and you can be too. There will be some weeks where getting out of bed is going to be a struggle and I feed Eva sandwich crackers and chocolate hummus for the most part. While I haven’t totally accepted that this is my new label, I’m getting there. Labels are so hard to accept and they are so hard to shake off. We need to stop putting them on ourselves and each other because in the end, we are all trying.