The Illusion of Time: Flies, Creeps, Stands Still


A friend of mine is in the thick of parenting struggle, with sick kiddos, and a full-time job, and the stress of simply being a working mom in the 21st century. It’s hard. It’s really hard. And I know that it won’t beĀ this particular hard forever. Because time is a funny thing, and with it comes new trials and tribulations for lack of a better cliche.

Last summer I wrote about being sick of breastfeeding. It was 18 months in and I.WAS.DONE. Sadly, Potamus was decidedly NOT done, and so we kept going. And yesterday I was reflecting on how easy it was to wean, and how long it seems since I hunkered down to nurse him to sleep. In fact, what feels like forever, has only been 2 months. Whoa. Time, you’re a tricky thing. And even this week, as I was bitching that I was still the only one to get Potamus to sleep at night, he fell asleep for Boof no problem. AND my picky eater at 2 slices of pizza for dinner, instead of his usual yogurt. Wow.

I happen to be a very in-the-moment feeler. I feel things intensely, and when they’re good they’re GOOD, and when they’re bad they’re everlasting. Eight minutes of screaming in the car on our morning commute feels like an eternity, whereas an extra eight minutes of uninterrupted sleep feels like nothing. I don’t know how to reconcile all of that, especially when it’s hard, but it’s nice to keep in mind, that things change quickly (and I mean quickly by lifetime standards, not moment-to-moment standards).

Why yes, I am mom enough, thank you!

I could probably write 17 blog posts in response to the controversial Time magazine article that has been splashed about this week. But I’m not going to focus this one on attachment parenting, or extended breastfeeding, or babywearing. It’s not that I don’t have opinions on these things, but I think that the MOST provocative and emotion-raising part of the whole thing, was the title: “Are you Mom enough?”

I am well aware that moms across the country (world?) wonder if they are doing enough as a mom. They are comparing themselves to their own mothers, grandmothers, neighbors, friends, Carol Brady, and the like. I wonder if my lack of interest in motherhood growing up was somehow a protective buffer, so now that I am experiencing life with Potamus, I wander around intersted in exploring my own version of motherhood, without feeling too crazy in comparing myself to others. Or perhaps I am so exhausted that all I can do is what comes ‘naturally’ or ‘instinctively,’ because anything more than that will take too much work (and thought, since my brain is so full up already).

Now I’m not perfect by any means, and have a whole list of things that I would like to be doing better (like less looking at my phone or watching tv at the end of a long day, when I could be staring into my sweet babe’s eyes), but overall I am not so very concerned with my skills versus my friends/neighbor/CarolBrady’s skills in raising a youngster. What makes me sad is that a headline like that really shakes moms up. And we are too awesome to let that happen.