If I were wiki’d, would I know I was me?

If I were wiki’d, would I know I was me?

I think I’d like to be Wiki’d or however one would phrase being  explored and explained by anyone who knows something on a subject.

Today I met a cool chick who thinks I am a cool chick (she’s been googling me and connecting the dots of my life) and all I could think was, “Chick, yes…cool, um, I’m not sure about one.”  This evening I was speaking to a fabulous woman named Cynthia whom I look to for insight, balance, and perspective and I told her that she is truly a mentor to me.  She thought I was delirious from lack of sleep, and completely dismissed the sentiment.

We all know that how others see us and how we view ourselves are not usually aligned, this is particularly true as women and mothers. So I wonder, who’s right?

Am I who you see, who I think you see, or who I see?

You tell me.

A.

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Tip’s & Tricks For When You Are Shit Out of Luck.

I’ve learned a few things that I feel have granted me a badge of motherhood. Just the first stripes…but still, well earned and worth sharing! So here goes:

If you’re out of juice, Electrolite fits the bill beautifully.

If you’re out of cream cheese, puree tofu and they can’t tell the difference!

If you’re stuck on how to get your kid to eat veggies, add them to tomato sauce and puree it all together. They can’t separate the tastes. Same goes for Tofu (get the soft one, the others remain as little white dots in the food).

If you’re daughter or son pee’s through all the clothes they wore and all the extra clothes you brought, you can use your sweater or cardigan as pants. Here’s how:

1) stick their legs in the arm holes.

2) taking a corner of the bottom of the sweater (which will now be the part at their waist) wrap around their torso until it’s tightened and tuck the end into itself.

Ta-da!!!!

If your baby has pooped up their back and left you with nothing to put them in, a receiving blanket can be used as a toga.

If you want your child to stop screaming in the car, start screaming at the top of your lungs. They will hate this as much as you do and they will shut right up.

If your daughter is as bossy as mine, act as though everything you do was HER idea. She’ll go along with just about anything.

When you have to take them grocery shopping and all your children are in tow, pick up the item they like most first. They will play with it, eat it, lick it, chew it happily as you run through and toss things into your cart with the skill of a pro basketball player.

Useful? Want more? Either way, you’ll get it as I live it.

A.

To Think Or Not To Think, That Was The Question.

We enjoyed a visit from an out of town friend this weekend and as we always do, we gossiped, swapped life stories, and energetically conversed about several topics. One of those conversations has stayed with me because my perception of it was so different than what he shared others had said about the subject.

He asked me the following question (basically this question, I am paraphrasing because I never remember anything exactly anymore): Now that I have kids, do I find that I reflect less (or think less) about who I am and what things mean in relation to myself.

When I asked what he meant, he clarified by giving me an example in the form of what his friends had replied, which was that now that they have children, they’re the most important thing and the other stuff doesn’t matter.

I was still confused as I sat there with an expression that could easily have been that of a cartoon mom’s with an empty speech bubble hovering over my head, only now I was no longer confused about the question, but rather by his friends answer.

As I understand it, and feel free to comment if you understand the friend’s answer differently, his friend believes that because he has done “the most important thing” (having children), he’s beyond being reflective and feels no need to be so.

Okay, so now here’s me: The one thing that I have actually made it a point to think about more since having the girls is precisely that. Who am I in relation to them, and in relation to the world that they will be growing up in?  What do they see when they look at their mother? What impressions will be stamped in their brains about what it means to be a mother, a wife, a woman, a friend, a member of society? And if I am not actively cultivating the very best version of these that I can, who will?

I’m not talking about perfection – I’ m talking about humanity, humility, humour, empathy, the pursuit of passions and interests. I am taking about social responsibility, personal accountability and the joy of being a curious-minded individual.

It is up to me to show my daugthers that you can dislike something that someone does and still love them.

It is up to me to show my daughters that it is fine to get angry and frustrated, but not okay to act with disregard for another person’s feelings or to throw thing wildly about.

It is up to me to show my daughters that she has a duty to this planet simply because she is an inhabitant of it.

It is up to me to inspire a curiosity about books, culture, language, science, history, philosophy, mathematics, arhictecure, EVERYTHING and anything that touches her life.

And it is most certainly up to me to show my dauthers that they OUGHT to reflect about themselves and who they are being.

That, in my opinion, is what personal integrity is all about. So, yes, I reflect and more than that I follow it up with conscientious choices.

A.

Mommy-ness vs. Woman-ness.

I think I completely underestimated the possible occurrence that these two most female descriptors could compete with one another, or even cancel one another out.

I had fantasies of mommy-hood: I was going to be hip, fresh, manicured and on top of having every hair in place and being myself I was going to be fun, warm and tremendously entertaining to my daughter. I thought that I would be ME and MOMMY as well. But I learned they don’t go hand in hand with the ease I thought would be natural.

Now, with Naya a fantastically funny little girl of almost two yrs, and belly-baby due in a about 10 days, I’ve begun to reconsider a thought I buried when I started the Wee Wiggles Social Group. Where does Ariana go when Mommy-ana shows up to nurse, change diapers and sooth in the middle of the night?

I sat on the floor of our living room when Naya was 6 months old crying out loud that because I wasn’t a “somebody” (read: a titled professional) that I was a “no body”. I was tortured by the notion that I was not earning an income and therefore felt I had no tangible worth. I suffered with this notion for nearly a year with very short lived stints of reprise, and to be honest, when I found I was pregnant with belly-baby my mind turned once again to the idea that for as long as I was having children and raising them, I was going to be worth less.

We know, because we cling to the statistics that a woman who stays at home raising her children would be compensated a salary of $110,000 US. If you were to hire a housekeeper, a nanny, an educator, a cleaning lady, a lady of the night (what, we do that too!) it would surely cost more than that, would it not? So why is that even though I have my own bank account, a joint account, and my husband does well that I still feel the need for consensus to spend money that surely I have earned despite it not coming in the form of a company issued pay stub?

I know I’m not alone in this, I’ve spoken with several women – professional, intelligent, accomplished women who are home on maternity leave (in Canada we enjoy nearly one year of leave) or who’ve elected with their spouse to become SAHM – and we all feel the same. That unless we are earning, even if we have a joint account with our spouse there is a certain degree of indebtedness that we just can’t shake.

Do I do it to myself? Do imagine whispers of confirmation that unless I am out there earning I truly am less worthy? Or do I really hear them coming from the mouths of some people around me in veiled comments or facetious jokes? What about you – do you hear or do you imagine them?

There are a few things I wanted in my life that for me satiated my sense of accomplishment: I wanted an extraordinary marriage (check), I wanted children (elated check), and I wanted personal financial wealth independent of my spouse (—). Clearly I have a way to go before I can check that off my list; the question is, how far if I keep doing my female bit in our family equation? And at what cost?