Family Circus

No one can drive us crazy unless we give them the keys. - Doug Horton

Wednesday

I'm not JUST a mom

I shop at Wal-Mart, and do just as my DH says: when I go shopping, I leave him on 'Snore Patrol' (children can be quite rambunctious in their sleep), and he tells me to 'take as long as I need.' I do just that! He's fortunate that I shop at Wal-Mart and not Nordstrom. I could do some financial damage there!

I love being able to say to others, "Go ahead of me. I have all the time in the world." I get such positive benefits from being considerate, even if my shopping trips to Wal-Mart are the only points in my life where I do not seem pressed for time. I feel free to stop and visit with other folks, especially those with children up past what I would consider a normal bedtime. Not judging, I promise. It takes a lot of work to get your child's circadian rhythms in tune with early bedtimes. The Fall time change has been a big help for me in the past.

So when I was speaking with another mother at Wal-Mart recently, she mentioned her 3 year old son, but continued speaking of her career, her coworkers and her boss. Then I got the question I used to dread: "So that do you do for a living?" When I hesitated to respond, trying to formulate a succinct answer, she filled in the blank for me. "Let me guess. You're wearing khaki pants, a stained tee, tennis shoes, and no makeup. I'd guess you stay home with your kids all day." That statement took almost no thought to react respond to. "Actually, I do quite a bit while I'm at home with my children, and I do have three girls, ages 6,5 and 2. They are actually boys in floral prints. I have a blog, titled Family Circus, and I've looked for a doorbell that plays Wringling Brothers' theme music." I almost blurted it, all in one breath! The mother said, "Well, Bless your heart!" I've heard that statement too many times in my life to mistake it for compassion! While I had a list of daily duties that I was prepared to spit at the woman, I quickly decided to move on. The man behind the Deli counter handed me the smoked cheddar I had requested, and I walked away. I realized that I was not angry, just frustrated at how many people, how many mothers consider stay-at-home mothers not a real contribution to society. I think all mothers influence society by raising our next generation! Women who are SAHMs work the equivalent of two full-time jobs, often without help. I have the privilege of knowing firsthand what some the many hats are that a stay-at-home mom has to wear each day:

  • Concierge
  • Full-time Chef
  • chauffeur service: school/activities
  • Full-service maid
  • Daycare/Preschool Teacher
  • Tutor for older kids
  • Garbage/Recycling Guru
  • Crayon/watercolor Aficionado
  • Household manager
  • Nurse
  • Sexy Wife

This list barely covers the bases. I love it when Dr. Phil goes off on a husband/father who doesn't appreciate the effort that goes into caring for their own offspring each day. I'm so blessed to have a husband that once remarked to me, when we brought our first daughter home, "It's okay to step over a basket of dirty laundry to pick a crying baby." I know that I'll never need 'Tell it Like It Is Phil' to set my hubby straight. He really is my Prince Charming. That's him in the picture with Catie, 1 day old, five years ago.

CAST & CREW

Erin: 31, Emcee. Witty redhead, handy with a whip.

DH: 30, Strong Man. Comedian, defender of virtue.

Halie: 7, Chimpanzee. Pulls teeth, loves bananas.

Catie: 5, Leaping Lemur. Gentle and cuddly, loves grapes.

Rosie: 2, Cappuccin. Flings poo, loves carrots.

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