As moms we make different choices about lots of things, and that A-OK. Some moms choose to breastfeed, and some don’t (or can’t). Co-sleeping works great for some, and not for others. Some let their kids watch Caillou, others would rather poke their eyes out than listen to that show. You do you.
But in spite of all our differences, there are some things that will always uniquely bind us as mothers (including our shared hatred of that Calliou kid).
Because even though we all parent differently, we’re still connected by motherhood itself. Its ups and its downs. The moments of pride and our overwhelming moments of guilt. Sometimes we light up when we see the smiles on our kids’ faces. Sometimes we have to clean up another human’s bodily waste. Motherhood is all about balance.
There is more that connects us than separates us, including our ability to laugh at the literal shitshow that is our lives most days. That’s because we have a lot of shared experiences that other mothers understand:
Having kids means that you get to learn new things every day:
When your toddler gives you your phone back with apps missing and you're trying to figure out which ones they deleted. pic.twitter.com/gtzRmBmglP
— MotherPlaylist (@MotherPlaylist) October 21, 2017
And have a lot of experiences you wouldn’t have had without kids:
Become a Mom so you, too, can pull sticks out of your purse as though it were a normal thing people do every day.
— the Mom TruthBomb (@momTruthBomb) August 11, 2017
Although some experiences are more fun than others:
In case you were wondering, the loudest sound in the world is my kid screaming, "Are you pooping?!?" in a public restroom.
— Unfiltered Mama (@UnfilteredMama) March 19, 2016
Kids can help us be the best version of ourselves:
My daily workout is walking through the house 14 times a day turning off all the lights my kids have left on in every room.
— Goddess Of Mischief™ (@AsgardianRose) June 11, 2015
And accept our imperfections:
Am I a perfect mom? No.
But am I trying my best to be a perfect mom? Also no.
— Scary Mommy (@ScaryMommy) May 4, 2017
But motherhood also means making sacrifices:
When someone asks what it's like to be a mom I show them the magazine I've been carrying for 6mths,because dammit I'm gonna read it one day.
— MommieKnowsfresh (@MommieKnwsFresh) July 21, 2016
Lots of sacrifices:
Becoming a parent means spending the rest of your life looking like you are in desperate need of a shower, a nap, and a heavy drink.
— Mommy Owl (@Lhlodder) October 29, 2016
If you look closely at the circles around a mother's eyes, you can count how many years she's lived without sleep.
— Ramblin' Mama (@ramblinma) August 30, 2017
But at least our children appreciate it:
Daughter: You're invading my personal space
Mom: You came out of my personal space
— Moe (@_Mo_lee_) January 8, 2016
Being a mom means knowing you’re needed:
"I've only been gone for 20 minutes, what the hell happened?"
-Motherhood, a memoir
— Tired Working Mom (@WorkingMom86) October 4, 2017
Because we go out of our way to be helpful:
Currently helping my son search for his chocolate that I ate last night
— sharon (@rubywoo09) April 1, 2015
Even though we can’t quite do everything:
*spends 5 hours packing & loading the car for family road trip
*child forgets to wear shoes
— Karen Johnson (@21stcenturysahm) August 31, 2017
Being a mom means you’ll eventually hit your breaking point:
*Mary Poppins voice*
Ok, children! Time to go!
[15 min later]
I said let's go.
— Lurkin' Mom (@LurkAtHomeMom) November 5, 2015
But stay on our good side, and you’ll be fine:
The best way to infuriate a mom is to open a second box of something when there's still a box of the same thing already open.
— Abe Yospe (@Cheeseboy22) March 24, 2016
We do what we can to show our appreciation for our spouses:
3yo (in bathroom): Mummy, can I put this sticker on Daddy's card?
Me (in bed): Yes.
3yo: Will he love it?
Me: Yes. pic.twitter.com/TJepUORQwH
— Sarah Dempster (@Dempster2000) June 21, 2015
We even volunteer for the PTA:
PTA room mom: We need some volunteers for the class par-
Me: PLATES AND NAPKINS!
— Julie Burton (@ksujulie) September 5, 2017
We ask the important questions:
Before having a kid the most important thing to ask yourself is “Am I ready to watch the exact same cartoon on repeat for the next 4 years?”
— Røb Fee (@robfee) March 3, 2015
And encourage our kids to follow their dreams:
I let my kids follow their dreams, unless I already paid the registration fee on their last dream, then they follow that for 6-8 more weeks.
— Amy Dillon (@amydillon) December 15, 2016
Being a mom means trusting your children:
If you're wanting an honest opinion about your hygiene or your cooking skills, have a few kids, they'll give it to you.
— Close to Classy (@closetoclassy) September 13, 2016
Mostly trusting your children:
I'm at my most hostage negotiator when I see my 3 year old holding a permanent marker without the lid.
— Simon Holland (@simoncholland) September 21, 2014
While admitting there are some things we’ll never understand:
My biggest parenting conundrum: why it is so hard to put someone who is already sleepy to sleep
— christine teigen (@chrissyteigen) August 5, 2016
Motherhood is full of fun surprises:
Parenting is basically surprising yourself each day due to how much stuff you can get done while in a perpetual state of exhaustion.
— Doyin Richards (@daddydoinwork) February 16, 2016
And some surprises we’d rather not have:
The kids are quiet. I'm not sure if I should be thrilled or terrified.
— Stella G. Maddox (@StellaGMaddox) March 24, 2016
And some we’d prefer a little notice about, if possible:
When the world is about to end, I hope we know about it in advance so I can stop doing laundry.
— Housewife of Hell (@HousewifeOfHell) October 10, 2013
It’s all worth it though. Sure, sometimes our families can act like a bunch assholes. But being a mom means knowing and appreciating they’re our bunch of lovable assholes.