I first knew I was in trouble when I was only a few months pregnant. “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” was my bible, and it helped me through endless hiccups, heartburn, and insomnia. But that book also scared the daylights out of me. A section in the book discussed nutrition, and the authors were all about making every calorie count. But when they recommended that that I carry a vial of wheat germ in my purse for when I’m at a restaurant and there aren’t any whole grain dinner rolls…I knew that that I was never going to measure up. It took me a long time to realize that maybe that’s OK.
So here’s to the B+ moms–you know who you are. I recognize you at the grocery story, rearranging your cart to get your token bag of baby carrots and Greek yogurt to cover the stack of frozen pizzas and sugared cereals. B+ moms buy good food, but we also balance that with a generous dose of Ramen and fruit snacks because sometimes it’s just easier.
B+ moms take their kids to the park and push them on the swings, fighting the urge to play Words with Friends while our kids build rock piles. We know our kids need our attention, so we smile and nod at every pretty pebble. Sometimes I’ll grab a picture of that triumphant backwards climb to the top of the slide and we’ll put it on facebook, evidence of time spent outdoors with mom. But I’m often relieved when park time is over and we can head home to righteously flip on netflix and heat up dinner.
There’s too much screen time at many B+ households. Homework is done, bug collections completed, and permission slips are eventually signed–usually in lime green marker because regular pens are as scarce as homemade spaghetti sauce. But then the TV goes on and our kids laugh at Joey and Chandler until one of the Friends pushes the TV14 guideline a little too far for even a B+ mom, and it’s back to the dreaded Disney Channel for the rest of the night.
The problem with being a B+ mom (or a B+ anything for that matter) is that we don’t share those regular days. My facebook page is full of smiling, joyful, proud moments, so I’m as guilty as the rest. I don’t think that anyone really wants to hear about how I snapped at my family about the dirty dishes piled in the sink, and then I plopped on the couch, ignored the half-folded laundry and ordered pizza. We don’t usually talk about the mundane, or the times that I know that everyone else is having an instagram-worthy moment but me.
So rest assured B+ moms, you are not alone. We all love our kids and are doing the best we can every day. But I hope we can remember for every giggly Easter egg hunt or expertly carved pumpkin that makes Facebook, there are just as many families that almost throttle each other trying to put up the Christmas tree. Luckily, our children leading B+ lives are a forgiving bunch, having learned that it’s possible to laugh about the big Christmas tree fight later, and that life is full of ho-hum, non-facebook worthy days sprinkled with random, healthy doses of joy.
And Happy Mother’s Day in Heaven to my mom, who was always a solid A in my book.