This week the “mommy club’ posts have been flying thick and fast! A few weeks ago Sharon posted about not quite feeling part of the mommy club for her own personal reasons. She blogged in a really nice way that wasnt nasty to other moms at all. Earlier this week another post popped up (that I’m not going to link to because I thought it was nasty and uncalled for) that didnt state this problem quite as eloquently! So I thought I’d throw my thoughts on the subject in…
In school I was never one of the cool kids. I was the girl who was quiet, sat in the front of the class and had a small group of close friends. I was the girl who was nice. Who would always be willing to chat and help out with your problems. I was the girl who helped you study and called to check on you after an exam. I wasnt the girl who was invited to parties or clubbing, I wasnt the girl who smoked in the bathrooms and I wasnt the girl who bunked school. I was a goody two shoes and I was pretty happy with that status most of the time. The fact is, I was an average girl in school, just a simple girl who had close friends but wasnt ever part of a bigger group.
Then I became a mom. And I discovered a whole new group of friends. Now if I see a mom in the shops, I immediately feel a kinship with her. She understands. She knows what its like to be covered in puke, be sleep deprived and lonely. She knows about nappies, bum cream, dummies and formula. She knows! She understands! So she’s immediately part of the club, and Im also part of the club and its amazing. Its a club that is exclusive and isnt at the same time. Its easy to get into the club, well for some. For some its a quick and sometimes its an unwilling entry, but for others its a long and difficult journey, finally resulting in an ecstatically happy entrance into the club.
However, calling this phenomenon, mommy club isnt exactly how I feel it is. I feel like its more a mommy school. When that baby comes into your life you have no idea what the hell you’re doing. So you talk, and you ask for help. And you learn from other moms. Some new moms and some old hats. They all have some insight and some advice and more often then not a shoulder to cry on.
Another part of this post is discussing the face us moms put on for the rest of the world. This is exactly what came up in the above posts. The fact is, we are not all coping all the time. We dont all have it together all the time. Maybe its wrong to not show this, maybe its wrong that we dont tell everyone how today we sat crying in the bath for two hours just because we couldnt bear to hold it in a second longer, or that last week we spent three days in our Pjs with dirty hair because we couldnt find the energy to get dressed. maybe its wrong that we dont blab about the fact that the dishes are STILL in the sink from last week and our dirty coffee cups are still next to our bed from last week. The fact is that having a happy mask on for the rest of the world makes it a hell of a lot easier to cope. My moms favourite expression is “if you dont know, pretend you do, eventually you’ll start to believe”. So we pretend to know what we’re doing. We pretend that things are perfect, and that things are great. Hoping that eventually our mask will drop and it will all be real. Some days the mask does drop, sometimes things REALLY ARE GREAT, sometimes our lives really are as perfect as we make them out to be, and sometimes theyre not.
To me, this is ok. I never assume that anyone is perfectly fine, I never assume that anyone has no problems. I think its fine to have a public face and a private face as you never know what battles everyone else is fighting. So just be nice, to everyone. And dont judge!
Other fantastic posts to read on this topic