I’ve had nearly identical conversations with several different moms this week, so I figured it might be a good topic to write about. I’m not sure if everyone can relate to this, but I’m guessing that many moms can: Kid-centricity.
Maybe it’s because I’m flooded with working mom guilt. Maybe it’s social media that puts a mirror in my face on a daily basis in regard to parenting. Maybe it’s my compulsion to expose my daughter to all of the cool experiences available out there. At any rate, I feel compelled to try to “get it all done”. And it’s tough to ignore all of the parties, events, and goings-on that are going on in Connecticut. There’s so much to do! There are so many invites now that school has started!
My recent focus on how I’ve been living a kid-centric lifestyle has been prompted by conversations with friends and acquaintances about how our parents raised us. Just today, my girlfriend and I were cracking up when we reminisced about how we spent quality time with our families: going to the laundromat, going grocery shopping, cleaning the house, doing yard work. Now I’m practically apologizing to my daughter for not giving her my undivided attention so that I can get some cleaning done. I find that I’m straightening up and putting dishes away at 5:30 in the morning or doing laundry at 10:30 at night so that I can alleviate some of the guilt I feel for not doing something fun with my daughter when we spend time together.
My girlfriend and laughed about the old, banged up, sometimes unsafe cars our parents drove … And the fact that this same girlfriend, while recently shopping for a new car, asked her daughter which backseat was the most comfortable for her.
Another woman and I were talking about how our moms practically kicked us out of the house for the day: “Go get some fresh air!” … and out the door we went. I’m pretty sure my mom had no idea where I was for hours on end. But she was able to vacuum and scrub the house with ammonia undisturbed for a while.
When my four year old daughter (strongly) requested that I switch the music from my radio station to Kids Place Live today, I informed her that there were no kids’ radio stations when I was a kid and I was forced to listen to my parents’ music. Gasp. I think I blew her mind. We listened to 80’s on 8 the rest of the way home. Put that in your pipe and smoke it, kid. Sometimes I have to remember that she will not be damaged if we do something Mom likes to do once in a while.
Maybe it’s because my mother was home with me during the day that she felt free to talk on the phone with her friends for hours on end while I whined about being bored, or had no guilt for not taking me to kid museums, kid events, back-to-back birthday parties, or apple/pumpkin/blueberry/raspberry picking every flipping weekend.
Or maybe she had mom-guilt over other things.