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Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mom Enough

The Time Magazine cover. By now, you've all seen it and it's question, "Are You Mom Enough?" What, you didn't request a good dose of judgement and guilt for Mother's Day? Thanks a lot for that one, Time.

Yes, it's just a ploy to sell magazines, and no, I'm not buying. But the question did get me thinking. Being "Mom Enough" can't be defined by adherence to this or that parenting technique. Being a parent is beyond complicated, and if there was one way to do it, the world wouldn't be as interesting as it is. So in honor of Mother's Day, I'm celebrating myself a bit with a list of some of the things I think I'm "Mom Enough" to handle.

I am Mom Enough to look back on the births of my children and be in such total awe that I did that. I am Mom Enough to look around my children's schools, the playground, the shopping mall, and not care how those children came into being, be it through C sections, IVF, adoption, whatever. I am Mom Enough to instead pray that they were all wanted and loved.

I am Mom Enough to admit that I felt like a complete failure for not breast feeding my children for more than a few weeks. I am Mom Enough to know formula feeding preserved my sanity, which let me provide many other benefits to my children.

I am Mom Enough to achingly miss my children while I'm at work every day. I am Mom Enough to be damn good at my job, and tremendously enjoy both my paycheck and all of the benefits of growing who I am as a person for 40 hours a week.

I am Mom Enough to acknowledge that Dad is often better at the "mom" things than I am. I am Mom Enough to not feel threatened by it and welcome his help.

I am Mom Enough to schedule play dates and run around the house straightening up for them. I am Mom Enough to hope no one opens my closets.

I am Mom Enough to be a play mate to my kids. I am Mom Enough to not be their best friend. I am Mom Enough to know I also need time with my own friends.

I am Mom Enough to be exhausted long after the newborn and toddler years, when my body trained itself to wake with worries in the night. I am Mom Enough to put myself first sometimes and sleep late when I can.

I am Mom Enough to agonize over decisions, big and small, that affect my children. I am Mom Enough to acknowledge that in the long run, many of my individual decisions won't matter much.

I am Mom Enough to know that the choices I make aren't right for anyone but me. I am Mom Enough to respect that others are making the choices that are best for their families.

I am Mom Enough to know that I can't do this alone. I am (trying to be) Mom Enough to look past all the media tripe and know that I, like all moms out there, am doing the best that I can.

And that it will all be Enough.

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