Whether we admit it or not, we moms tend to attach ourselves to a mothering “type.” And if we aren’t calling ourselves names, we can be sure another mom is doing the name-calling for us. I’m the “Whatever” mom and I’m proud of it.
You have probably heard at least one of these before: “helicopter” mom, which has been humorously parodied everywhere; “tiger” mom (read more about the history of this term here); “lawnmower” mom; “free-range” mom; “attachment” mom; and “dragon” mom, to name a few. I hear them, read about them, and witness several in action everyday; yet, I cannot relate to any of them. It is not because I rise above these titles, but none pertain to how I view my mothering.
My “Whatever” mom self-described status reflects this: the children are breathing, happy, and growing.
Other phrases that come to mind: just let it be; nobody got time for that; and a dash of I will fake it til I make it. Perhaps I feel this way because I am juggling twins. Maybe it’s because I am the eldest of four girls and played the role of second mother in the house. Or, maybe it’s because I work full-time outside of the home; but I just feel we think too hard as moms.
We think too hard because we love unconditionally.
We want the best for our babies without others questioning how we provide it. We have a fervent desire to secure healthy futures for our families. Brand new moms especially find themselves fretting over the seemingly trivial, yet for perfectly good reason. We feel it our duty to strive to be the best when we feel we are trying to do it all at our worst.
It is not easy for me to let it go and be the “Whatever” mom, which is why I wrote this post.
I was always the kid who finished school projects on the first day of a semester, and who immediately started thinking about the presentation that would accompany it (total nerd-alert, I know). I later became the adult who settled for an entry-level hospitality job, worked full-time, and then juggled part-time classes, climbing up the career ladder to where I am today. And here I am, still working full-time and raising twin toddlers. I am somewhat of a perfectionist who loves to learn, and a creative soul that lives for the next challenge. In new motherhood, this translates to pending disaster if you cannot find it within yourself to let some parts of you go.
You don’t have to document every second of a baby’s life in his or her baby books. Your babies don’t need ever-so-costly pediatrician-approved equipment; nor do they require only the highest-quality organic, all-natural foods at every meal. You don’t have to look like the “mommy models” in the latest Parents Magazine issue (thankfully); nor are you required to enroll your toddler in only the best school or playgroup activities. These aren’t the things they will remember. What they will remember is the loving mother they had by their side, no matter the “type” of mom she was.
Be the mom you want to be.