Motherhood Merit Badges


Motherhood is a series of unfortunate events that bonds women together in the most thankless and revolting job on earth.

Ok, so it’s more than that, but the unfortunate events are definitely a big part of the experience. Whoever a mother is — whether she’s Angelina Jolie or the teen mom at the grocery store checkout — I feel an instant bond with her, knowing we’ve both dealt with a puking kid in our bed or feverish baby at the most inopportune time.

I was in Girl Scouts for a brief time, and I acquired a snazzy collection of merit badges to brag about my accomplishments like practicing athleticism with purpose and volunteering for a good cause. I’m thinking of finding that sash and slapping on some badges that I’m really proud of: The badges of motherhood.







  1. 21

    Suzanne McKay says

    If I find my Girl Guide sash, I will truly print these off, cut them out, and staple them on. I’ve earned every single one. Sometimes twice.

  2. 22

    Rhana @ Dumb {Squared} says

    There should also be an EATING BADGE – survived one meal without eating off a child’s plate, but still gained weight.

  3. 24

    Katy @ Experienced Bad Mom says

    I love the blowout badge! It was over a monumental blowout that another mom and I became good friends forever.

  4. 25

    Nicole Martel says

    Hey Jill. I couldn’t find a link to your email but wanted to say, I was laughing out loud the other night reading your book. I love how you mentioned that you are a bit abusive with the camera. hehe… So am I my friend, so am I. :) My mom said “I hope he loves the camera because you’re gonna drive him crazy” a day after I had my son. LOL. I try not to over do it… I try, but it’s so hard!

  5. 26

    Shirley@motivatedmommyoftwo says

    I love all of these badges I must admit I have not earned all of those yet, but pretty sure the time is coming :)

  6. 27

    Gigi says

    I’ve earned ‘em all – except for the last one. That one I will replace with the Taught Him How To Drive and I Survived badge and I Made It Through High School Again (since I seemed to have had to go through it all over again with him). Soon to be followed by the I Can’t Believe I Just Sent Him Off to College badge.

  7. 29

    Alison@Mama Wants This says

    I’ve earned 80% of these badges and I’ve only been doing this gig for 2 1/2 years!

  8. 30

    Christine says

    I don’t even have kids of my own yet and I’ve already earned the Fisherman badge, Volunteer badge, and resourceful badge. Gotta love being an Aunt. And now that I’m expecting i get to do it all over again in 7 short months.

  9. 31

    Kathryn says

    OK, hands down (hands up?) the resourceful badge the best! – and just wait until they get older! It gets better. Well, more entertaining. There’s the ‘answering the question about the acrobatic thing those people are doing on HBO’ badge…..

  10. 34

    Holly says

    Got em all honey and I only have 1 under 2.
    How about:
    The secret agent badge: Earned by sneaking around a sleeping baby for over an hour
    The multitasker badge: Earned by putting a sleeping baby to bed at the same time as a dolly, baba, and blankie ( bonus points if you have to climb stairs)
    The superstrength badge: Earned by stepping on a hard plastic toy and not screaming

  11. 36

    Donna says

    Well, looks like I’ve earned every one of these. Wonder if I can find a vest big enough to hold them all. Here are some more badge ideas….
    Car Stereo badge: Able to listen to dueling conversations from the back seat of the car & answer both appropriately while navigating traffic.
    Martha Stewart Baking Badge: Baked, decorated & delivered to classroom or bake sale on time a confection that looks good & tastes good & doesn’t make anyone ill, all after only 2 hours of sleep.
    Mother Theresa badge: Massaged the knots out of family’s backs, necks, shoulders while cheerfully ignoring own pain & discomfort knowing a glass of wine & the massage recliner were scheduled for later.

  12. 37

    Amy says

    Tantrum badge, Chef badge for those days that we pull a meal ut of the food we have left in fridge when we forget to get something the kids will eat besides nuggets and mac n cheese.

  13. 38

    Jessica McFadden - A Parent in America says

    THE VOLUNTEER BADGE!!! Oh my gosh, that one is the worst! I am being a reverse Mom Scout and trying to make it through this summer with*out* earning that one too often.

    Because often when a fellow mother talks about wanting more of a “community”, she really means more “free babysitting from a sucker like me.”

  14. 39

    D says

    I’ve earned all of these and then some..

    How about record setting eating? Or resourceful eating? How about surviving a play date or glitter and play doh?

  15. 40

    Mrs. Yoy says

    Oh, The Filth Badge. I have an ongoing contest with my neighbor to see who goes the longest without a shower. It’s not like I want this to happen, it just does. Thank god for ponytails.

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