Mothers , we all have ‘em. Some of us are them. Some of you sleep with them. Some of you like to judge them. Usually it’s Mothers who like to judge other Mothers.
When I take the kids to ski lessons, I say a hearty goodbye and while the other Moms stand in the freezing cold, (like Canadian -35 cold) I sneak up to the lounge and grab a drink.
See what just happened there?
You JUDGED me…didn’t you?
You sat there and thought to yourself,
- I am a BETTER mother than she is
- I would NEVER do that and therefore anyone who does is horrible
- Her children are going to turn out to be hateful, misbehaved losers who eat pickles for breakfast in their trailer
- She doesn’t love her children like I love my children
Fuck off. You don’t know me.
Today, the spawn had gymnastics. I usually sit in the gallery and write while they tumble and run. As we were packing up, another kid says to his mom, “Mom, remember you promised that we would stop at McDonalds for dinner.”
The woman paled and stuttered in embarrassment as she hurried to explain to me,
“I promised them,” she started, “because my husband is home so late tonight and with lessons running late, I just figured that this one time I could swing by. The day got away from me. You see they NEVER get McDonalds, we usually don’t even eat Gluten.”
Might I remind you that I have never met this woman before in my life.
Is this where we have come to as mothers? That we are so shitty to each other that this lovely lady assumes that I am going to think she is a bad mother because at 630 on a Wednesday when it is -35 outside that she is going to fly through a drive-thru instead of going home and making a seven course meal? Is that who we are? Are we proud of this? Seriously?
Is that all that counts these days? NOT going to McDonalds is the new parenting competition. Mom’s used to battle with grades and trophies, these days, it’s how little gluten you eat that makes you a good Mom. Does the xanthum gum and kale level count more than anything else? We use Gluten now to make each other feel shitty?
Shame on us.
Know this and know it well. Every SINGLE mother in the history of all mankind has done her very best with what she knew how and what she could do. So shut your judging thoughts down because you do not know that woman and don’t even for a second pretend that you do. Please don’t throw Gluten into your desperate need to rank parenting skills on some ‘Good Mom Bad Mom’ scale.
I’m not telling you to take your kids to McDonalds every single day but certainly do not answer to random strangers when you do. My children have been to McDonalds, sure they have. If there were a gluten pill that I could take and eat whatever I wanted for a day, the FIRST thing I would go for would be a Big Mac. Don’t feel guilty for taking your kids to McDonalds once in a blue moon or shit, if you have to take them every day for a week. You being happy is one of the best gifts you can give your child.
In the words of a very wise woman I know, “Guilt is a useless emotion.” VK
McDonalds and other less healthy food are what my family call ‘sometimes foods’. Like everything in this world, my children’s lives need balance and yes, that means that once in a while they eat McDonalds and candy and ice cream and last week Trev gave Julia leftover pizza for breakfast, she was thrilled. We use our judgment and our knowledge of our children’s lives to make an informed decision on what goes into their mouths.
My thought process on what my children eat is none of your concern.
So please mothers I beg of you, STOP! Stop judging other mothers and support them. Smile at another mom in the grocery line up when her kid is screaming for a chocolate bar and you watch as she gives in. You were there once and if you weren’t, you will be. Smile at her tell her you get it.
Giving your kid gluten does not make you a bad mother. If your babies get into a warm bed at night in clean-ish clothes with sort of brushed teeth and a dry bum, you win today. As long as they know down to the core of their soul that they are safe, and special and loved, it does not matter one little bit whether broccoli or gluten are in their belly.
Can we keep our eye on the ball here? Please be supportive and kind to the Mom next to you. Sometimes we need to swing by McDonalds, sometimes a kid deserves a chocolate bar. Sometimes a kid skis better when their Mom doesn’t watch so it’s better if she goes to the lounge, has a drink and watches where they can’t see her.
Be the best mom you can, give other mothers your permission to do the same.