|photo by momp photography|
One day in the car, my son asked me, "If a baker bakes and a teacher teaches, does a ninja ninj?"
We moms have the same problem as ninjas. The names that we have for what we do, well, they do not actually describe what we do. I first started thinking about this while I was catching up with a friend, the mother of twins, at the beach one summer. In the course of the conversation, I asked her if she was working, part time or anything. She started to answer, but her mom piped up from her chair. "I hated when people used to ask me that. Yes! I have two young children! I am working 24 hours a day!"
She was right, of course. I myself am a teacher with two young children and a small business. I am a "working mom". But what mom isn't working? Similarly, in an understandable attempt to get away from the completely inaccurate title of "stay-at-home mom", women have started to self-identify as a "full-time mom". OK, that's more accurate, but does it imply that I am a part-time mom, letting my familial concerns float away as soon as I clock in at school? Perhaps that is overly defensive, but the reality is that many of these terms are loaded in a way that we, as women, have allowed. Many of our descriptors have taken on a this-not-that element that somehow passes judgement.
Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe the negative connotations are in my head, the result of the guilt we inevitably feel no matter the path we take. I would like to think that women are rooting each other on, thinking that each of us is just doing what's best for us and for our families, though that might not be what's best for the mom or the family next door.
What do you think? Do we need a branding overhaul on motherhood?