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The Surrender of a SuperMom

Aug 17, 2007
"I took care of Callie," my three year old announced.

Callie had been starting with that little whine that babies adopt to alert mothers and sisters that their new crawling tricks have them wedged behind the furniture. But the whining had stopped, rather suddenly it seemed in retrospect.

"Thanks, Cassie. You are such a big help," I said. "How did you manage that?"

"I got her a beer."

Sure enough, Callie was still wedged behind the table, but now she was happily gumming the cold, smooth side of a Newcastle.

Because I wanted to think that Cassie went for the beer in the fridge because she imagined how good it would feel on her teething sisters sore gums, and not because she deems it some sort of panacea, the whole thing got me laughing (after I took away the beer, of course.) Then it got me thinking about which of my friends would laugh about this story along with me. And which would sort of disapprove.

I guess that groups my mommy friends into two camps: one camp that can overhear me pleading with my kids, "Please do not lick the carpet," and they do not say a word (or better yet, they laugh). And the other camp, which thinks that it is pretty gross.

For me, if a toddler gets out of a car, and she has a lollipop stuck to her bottom, I know, instantly, that her mom is a friend. And the opposite is true, too. If you have any number of kids under the age of four and your car does not occasionally stink, you probably make me a little nervous.

In all of our efforts to prove our own Supermom skills, let us remember that it is sometimes rather endearing when we can not. To remember that may be to regain a lot of energy and a lot of time.

I will be the first (and loudest) person to say that parenting is the most important job any of us will ever do. And it is important to take the job seriously. But it has become fairly apparent to me that my kids do not care (or even notice) whether I am particularly adept at baking, cooking, or cleaning. The only thing they truly care about is whether I asked them for help in doing it. On some days they prefer, in fact, to decorate store bought cookies than to make something more complicated from scratch. Many days, the only thing they want to do is walk in the forest and ask me why things look the way they do.

When we surrender those parts of this motherhood journey that are not important to us, and we gain that time and energy, we begin to rediscover all those things that were important to us before we had kids. And that is one amazing discovery: All those things still exist, but they are more enjoyable now than ever because, suddenly, we have new people to share them with. Sweet little people who are an awful lot like us.
About the Author
Susie Cortright is the founder of several popular websites, including BestSelfHelp.com, Susies-Coupons.com and Momscape.com, where you can register to win gift cards from top online merchants.
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