First, I want to clarify that I’m not a polygamist. Never have been, don’t intend to be. No judgement, just want to be clear in case there is any confusion because of the title. My sister wives are those moms I share life with. Share life, not husbands.
Being a mother is great, but I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have survived it so far without my husband of course (that tribute is for Father’s Day). But I also owe a great deal to the many exceptional mothers in my life.
For my mothers that live far and away…where would I be if I hadn’t been able to pick up the phone or send an e-mail with deepest fears, concerns or questions? Thank God most of you became mothers before me. Books are great, but Baby 411 isn’t an understanding friend on the other end reassuring you it will be ok. Telling you it’s perfectly acceptable to do whatever it takes for you and baby to get sleep. Like letting the baby sleep on your chest for the first 3 months. Not that I ever did that. I’m just saying that it would have been reassuring for my friends to say I was normal.
OK. I totally let my child sleep on my chest for the first 3 months of her life. Judge if you must. And whether it was right or wrong, those moms in my life told me I was ok and that it would be ok and that I was still normal. Well, as normal as one can be. Let’s be honest when all you do is interact with a baby or child all day, you forget what normal means in the grand scheme of things
Then there are the moms that are a little closer to home. These are the women I first began to refer to as my sister wives. Again, just to clarify, not a polygamist. The name caught on because the three of us were usually at each other’s house trying to maintain a certain level of sanity. Typically at any given point during the day, one of the husbands would be present which made it feel a little like we were sister wives. Three women, one husband. Only a little because everything else was nothing at all like being a sister wife. Or at least nothing like the HBO show.
I love the moms in my life. I mean who else do I get to chat with about various and sundry topics like world peace, the role of women in politics, sustainability, carbon footprints and the likes. OK, well actually we occasionally drank wine and talked about how to manage this thing called motherhood. When do you potty train? How do you discipline? If you have to choose between eating and sleeping which one would it be? How do you fit in a work out so you feel good about your post-pregnancy body? Of course all of this amidst interruptions, diaper changes, toy interventions, etc.
These women love me, love my child and are present. They are honest about their own struggles with motherhood. I need that. Honesty. Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to be every cloud has a silver lining, but positivity does not have replace honesty. I’m pretty sure we all need to hear we’re not alone, that motherhood is rewarding AND hard. That it’s ok to walk away sometimes if it means regaining your sanity so you can deal. That even supermom has her moments of frustration, loneliness, doubt.
These moms also encourage me. They tell me things like, this too shall pass. Not because it’s what you’re supposed to say but because they’ve walked the path ahead of me, and they know there is an end in sight. They also let me know that I’m a great mom. Just like honesty, I need to hear I’m a great mom. As mom’s we need to hear that we’re doing the best we can. The media isn’t going to give that message to us. Sometimes our churches can’t even give that message to us. We all need some sister wives to be there for us.
Just remember, share life, NOT husbands.
Happy Mother’s Day!