As I read more of the natural parenting and "mama" blogs out there, I feel as if I am in the minority on many issues, however, in the real world of Portland, Oregon USA I think I'm pretty typical, and in other parts of the country, dare I say, "weird."
The quintessential Mama is an educated (usually with an advanced degree) woman who relinquished her career in order to funnel her intellect into parenting and writing about it while her husband works to pay the mortgage or a woman who works at home part-time either in her chosen profession or creating some kind of hand-made items to sell on etsy (how's that for a run-on sentence!). She goes to playgroups, effortlessly whips her baby into that Moby wrap, has never given her child a bottle or let him cry while she pees or showers. She also does not send her children to public school (unless it's a magnet or charter). She never uses the word "no" with her child and somehow manages to keep her composure and always re-frame everything in the affirmative. The Mama never makes mistakes. She does everything right and agrees with all the other Mamas about all things parental. She does not do TV, or Santa, or candy and her kids don't mind because none of their other playgroup peers have access to these evils either. The Mama knows everything there is to know about attachment parenting....she can actually channel Dr. Sears...and she is more than willing to advise you on how to pee on an airplane while baby is in the Moby (yes, I have had this conversation with one of them). The Mama is the ultimate PC-er (except when you're referring to computers, then it's Mac all the way). She bends over backwards to accommodate those less enlightened because she prides herself on being tolerant of others.
The most important thing to know about a Mama is that.........................................................................
SHE DOES NOT EXIST!
This is something I have to remind myself of every so often when I'm rolling through Bloggyland. Because I do not fit the Mama mold in its entirety, my guilt snowballs as I click through page after page of like-minded woman spouting their reasons for doing elimination communication, not doing circumcision, not vaccinating and the plethora of other things that exclude me. I find myself lamenting with a bag of Skittles and asking ain't I a Mama?
The answer is a simple one: Yes, you are!
The truth is The Mama is an illusion. She is a composite of all things deemed "perfect" in modern parenting. She is like a Barbie in that she has bits and pieces of us, but in totality is a physical impossibility. Most of the Mamas in Bloggyland are writing about their successes, not their shortcomings. They are writing about their topic......natural/attachment/whateveryouwanttocallit parenting, so in order to stay on-topic they do not write about the time when they bribed their child with a cookie so she would just hold off the temper tantrum until they left the grocery store. They write about the aspects of perfection that they can attain and just don't talk about the ones that don't fit into their realistically imperfect lifestyle.
But guess what.......I will! I will share with you my successes and my failures. What works for me and what doesn't. Because I would hate for any of you to sit on your couch at night crying into a sugary snack while sobbing, "ain't I a Mama?"