Put The “O” (Optimism) Back in Mommy

alexIt’s time to put the “O” back in Mommy and the “O” is Optimism!! How many articles are written about sleep deprived mothers, the challenges of balancing motherhood and work, how to whittle that waistline from baby #3 and more…

There is so much to celebrate about motherhood and we would all agree that even after a ‘tough’ day with a toddler, the next morning we can’t wait to get our little bundles out of bed. I think the “O” fell out of mommy when the tone took a shift…look at these “why’s” vs “why nots”
• Why the terrible twos? Why not the tremendous twos?
• Why is it sleep deprivation? Why not sleep efficiency?
• Why is it a struggle to balance being a working mom? Why not a gift to have the choice?

So, I’m going to go there…probably the ONLY conflict that exists between mothers today. Do you work or stay-home? (Also as a point of clarification Work-for-pay vs. Stay-at-home moms…because both are jobs) How many times have you been in a similar situation; you run into a complete stranger in the aisle of a Target – and as soon as you both realize you’re mothers, a conversation can spark-up with incredible energy and excitement. The only topic most women tiptoe around is “do you work or do you stay home”.  And I truly believe there is an envy and jealousy that triggers as a result of the other woman’s answer. And why the envy AND jealousy? …because we live in a world where we WANT IT ALL.

My point of view- why have a strong opinion about one over the other because both are GREAT!

Obviously, I’m a “work-for-pay” mother  (as I’ve now heard it put) and I wanted to offer an “optimistic” point-of-view for all working mothers out there. I had an awesome conversation with a great friend of mine (Tracy), who is also a working mother. As we sat on the beach we posed the question to each other; “If everything in your life remained the same; if you had the choice would you choose to work?” Put another way, “If you could remove the worries of providing stability and opportunities for your family, would you choose to work?”

My friend so eloquently described the situation a little differently; we shouldn’t get wrapped up in making the right decision for your family – staying home or returning to work. Rather, we should find peace in the idea that we have a choice! Every day we have the choice to work is a day to celebrate, because think about the many women who came before us. They didn’t have the luxury & freedom of choosing. The choice is what all women who came before achieved for us.

So next time we read Mommy Wars (looking for the answer on ‘how to have it all’)…celebrate the idea we have a choice. Here is a favorite quote that summarizes the sentiment, “Life is a journey and we can take a turn or detour anytime we want”. This quote offers incredible solace knowing that our decisions never have to be permanent.

Enjoy the journey of motherhood! Today we celebrate YOU!!

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5 Responses to “Put The “O” (Optimism) Back in Mommy”

  1. Gretchen April 4, 2008 at 7:11 am #

    This is such an inspiration to Mommy’s, Mommy’s-to-be, and single women thinking about “what will I do when my Mommy time comes?” It is such an incredible time when a woman can run for president, be a Mom, or even better….choose to do both!

  2. Jen April 4, 2008 at 12:56 pm #

    Very well written!!! I recently quit my work for pay job after 4 years. My 3rd child was born in February and we decided that it was time for me to stay home. I have been on both sides, both have pros and cons!! What matters most is being a MOM no matter what side of the fence we are on :)

  3. Nicole April 6, 2008 at 11:22 am #

    Absolutely !!

    Well said!

  4. Classy Mommy April 9, 2008 at 7:54 pm #

    Fabulous post. Well put. Thank you! The wonderful thing is that many of us have a choice today. Just came back from J&J’s Camp Baby and heard great things about Graco connecting with Moms from tons of Mommy bloggers…..coincidentally I actually live a few miles from your headquarters!

  5. Stephanie April 15, 2008 at 2:36 pm #

    What a wonderful post! Well-written and timely! I especially loved your description of running into “a complete” stranger at Target (or anywhere) and then tip-toeing around the work-for-pay (love that rhetoric, by the way) or stay-at-home question. I have felt that awkwardness so many times. I never know how to ask that question. I don’t want to ask, “Do you work…?” and risk being offensive (after all, ALL moms work), but I also don’t want to ignore the possibility that she may have a “career side” of herself. I really love the “work-for-pay” phrase, but I’m still not sure that would come across right…hmmm…any suggestions?

    Thanks again for such positive and passionate prose.

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