Monday, July 12, 2010
But that's not all I am.
At least in theory. In reality it's difficult to be much else. Like the workaholic who defines his life by his job, the mother has a job that becomes her life - the fullest-time job, a job that she loves without limit despite the pain and anxiety it occasionally brings.
Maybe I should specify that I am a mother of small children, and possibly mothers of older children would claim that because of the reduction of their working hours they find the time to be something more than a mom. To find their selves. The rest of the self that got left behind with the birth of their children.
I mean, their children can walk, feed and clothe themselves, go to school. So much!
But what happens after that - when they start dating, driving, drinking? Then the maternal anxiety returns.
If it ever went away. Because that is the hardest part of being a mom: the worry. We worry about what could happen. We worry about what the children are doing, and what they're not doing. We worry that we're not doing enough, or that we're doing too much. The responsibility is the proverbial weight on our shoulders, and even the most caring of husbands and fathers aren't able to carry a part of this weight.
So who are we moms? Is it different for the stay-at-home-mom than for the working mom? You know, you Rabenmütter, abandoning your children to pursue your own interests (right, or the survival of your family). Sometimes I envy you. But not too often. You have the job that ends at 5pm, but you still have the job that never ends waiting for you at home.
Is it different to be a mother of one? Two? Four? Twins? Triplets? What about when your children are 30 and getting married and having their own children? How are we moms then?
I guess I'll have to wait a few years to find out.