Hello… Supermum? Are you there??
No, I didn’t think so……because you don’t exist do you. You and your cartoony, sickly-sweet brand of mum that looks like Barbie and acts like Mary Poppins (who, incidentally, wasn’t actually a mum herself…hmm). But you get mentioned all the time and mums struggle daily to live up to your example, even though you aren’t real. I don’t believe in you yet I have still somehow managed to build up an image of you in my head!
As far as I’m concerned though, whether you are a hippie ‘must be organic’ sort of a mum who gets inspiration from reading deep and meaningful books and quotes about motherhood or a comedy-loving, wine-drinking one who feels better after looking at funny cartoons and videos of exasperated parents (or a bit of both like me), one thing remains the same the world over……all us mums are in this big parenting boat together, navigating (blundering?!) our way through the highs and the lows, the choppy waters and the stormy seas. And, quite frankly, parenting is hard enough already without the added burden of trying to live up to an impossibly perfect and completely make-believe character!
Here are 7 reasons why I do not believe in supermum….
1. She has the patience of a saint.
Let’s go back to Mary Poppins here….she had a lot of patience but she wasn’t a mum was she. And remember how she leaves the children after a short time….”I have to go now, bye bye kids”.
2. She always knows just what to do.
Well in that case why hasn’t she written ‘Supermum’s definitive guide to motherhood’ which we will all follow gleefully as we wave goodbye to all our parenting woes…..and to all the mummy forums. (I don’t think so!)
3. Her house is always immaculate….
….while I am constantly tripping over or kneeling down on one of the many (and positively excruciating!) toys my sons have left lying around!
4. She spends all day doing arts and crafts with her kids.
Hmm, anyone with kids knows how fidgety they are and how quickly they get bored. I can’t imagine any child wanting to do that all day (or any mum for that matter!).
5. She has children that look and behave perfectly all the time.
Well for me that’s a sure sign that something is wrong, that these are probably unhappy children and that they most likely don’t think their mum is super at all…..either that or they are child robots.
6. She is always on time.
No matter how often I practice getting out of the house with the kids, it inevitably ends up being a mad rush with me frantically repeating ‘put your shoes on’ (spacing the words further apart each time) and wondering why we are always running late no matter how early I start getting everyone ready.
7. She never looks frazzled.
I don’t know about you but I find being a parent regularly leaves me feeling frazzled. Don’t get me wrong, I adore my kids and feel truly blessed to have them in my life, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t regularly feel overwhelmed by the noise, the chaos and all the demands that come with being a parent.
Now let me ask the question again, rephrasing it slightly this time……
Can the real supermum please stand up.
Oh there you are…..yes, you with the tired eyes, smudged mascara and skirt on the wrong way round. You with the kids with stains on their T-shirts and cornflakes in their hair. You who, despite having hardly slept last night because of your crying baby, still somehow managed to get yourself out of bed this morning, fighting back your own tears, so that you could take care of your little one/s all over again today. And you who, exhausted after being at work, still manages to do the shopping, make your child’s tea, read them a story and kiss them goodnight.
Don’t you think that’s super? Well I certainly do!
Oh and don’t worry about the kids, you’re doing a great job with them….you just need to learn to be a little kinder to yourself.
Successful mothers are not the ones who have never struggled.
They are the ones that never give up, despite the struggles.
– Sharon Jaynes –
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