Super-mom? Nearly every mom is,
By Elizabeth Livingston
July 24, 2006 | Super-mom: an exemplary mother; also:
a woman who performs the traditional duties of housekeeping
and child-rearing while also having a full-time job,
as defined by Merriam-Webster online.
Although I don't have a full-time job, I do have a
part-time job and am a half-time student. So I think
Once upon a time I was single. Once upon a time I was
able to sleep in and go out with friends when I wanted
to. Now I have a curfew which forces me to be home strictly
by 6:30 each evening or I will be forced to suffer the
wrath of my nearly 8 months old Dennis Michel.
People without children just don't seem to understand
that life with babies isn't happy most of the time and
frustrating some of the time. No, it's definitely more
like frustrating most of the time and happy some of
the time, at least when it comes to Dennis.
When we first brought Dennis home, I laughed when one
of my professors made sure to tell me to get some rest.
I was getting plenty of rest! This baby slept all the
time. What was everyone complaining about? Then he started
waking up more.
He spit up everywhere, constantly -- and not just small
amounts either, big huge bottle-worthy amounts of spit-up.
I took him to the doctor and he was diagnosed as a kid
who had trouble keeping things down. I practically gave
up wearing clothes they were so messy all the time.
Then he started to get colicky. He cried a lot, not
as much as some babies with colic, but a lot. The doctor
said it was because he couldn't get his poo out. Great.
So for months we have been helping him with that. And
at about the time the doctor said it was going to get
better for Dennis, it actually got worse.
This brings up back to the super-mom idea. There are
lots of working mothers in this country today. I am
not going to bash them by saying they can't be a super-mom
because they leave their child with a sitter.
But if I were to go by the definition given above,
then nearly every mother in this country would be considered
I don't feel like a super-mom because I think there
are a lot of things which could be done better for Dennis.
However, if I say that I do a lot of work taking Dennis
to three of my classes nearly everyday with me, doing
all my homework, still managing to clean at least part
of the house and work from home part-time, I would be
calling myself a super-mom and sounding full of myself.
I think doing all of that is necessary and done by
hundreds of mothers every day. Frankly, I'm wondering
if a super-mom even exists. When I think about the word
mother, it means so much more than just a woman who
has children. The responsibility is often on her shoulders
to make sure the children she brings into the world
are raised right. The amount of work is endless and
ever-changing as the children grow.
One year its doing ABC's homework and the next it will
be helping them with science fair projects, then prom,
Since bringing Dennis home I have thought about the
term super-mom because I have had people call me that.
Yes, I am trying to get an education and help bring
an income to my family. But I see this as a responsibility
I am required to do. When I figured out without the
doctor's help that Dennis was having all these problems
because he was lactose intolerant, I received praise
from many people and other parents. It's great that
I figured it out, but I had a child who was in pain
and I knew the doctor was wrong. Things weren't going
how they should have with Dennis, and as any parent
should, I set out to find the problem.
I think every mom that I haven't seen literally throw
a child into the backseat of a car and yell at is a
super-mom. Everybody gets frustrated. Everybody gets
mad. But you don't stop loving the person you carried
with you and you don't stop trying to answer the call
of responsibility which was given to you. How could
any mother who has to answer to all the responsibilities
and not complain (much) not be considered a super-mom?