I am an And Mom.
I imagine you are too.
And if not, maybe you just need a little nudge in the right direction. Permission perhaps to be a part of this Mom club.
I will gladly give you that permission.
What is an And Mom?
It’s going to look different from Mom to Mom. There isn’t a strict guideline. Just one little word you must always remember.
Here is what I think it looks like for me.
I am a mom who tries to cook home meals and buy organic and offer vegetables.
And I am a mom who lets her kids eat ice cream as a snack.
I am a mom who LOVES to read books with her children.
And I am a mom who passes out iPads when I need them to just leave me alone.
I am a mom who sets screen-time rules that work for our family.
And I am a mom who throws that rule out the window when I feel like it and let’s the tv stay on all day. Maybe even on Disney channel.
I am a mom who makes her children follow the rules when safety is involved.
And I am the mom who ignores the instructions on the grocery cart and let’s her kids ride in, under, on top of, or upside down on that thing. Because fun.
I am a mom who sets limits and follows through when it comes to making positive parenting decisions.
And I am a mom who feels completely lost and helpless by her children and what they need at any given time.
I am a mom who loves the choice to be home with her children.
And I am a mom who is sometimes bored, annoyed, and restless by that choice.
Today I decided it was important to own this part of my Momhood, and also to encourage you to do so as well.
I had reminders from different moms today about the struggle to be the And Mom. One was doubting and feeling guilty about her abilities as a mom. Another was choosing to take charge this summer when the balls had perhaps been dropped during the school year.
”...So this is how it's going to go: great children's literature AND iPads. Adventuring out AND lounging at home. Healthy fresh breakfasts AND three bowls of Lucky Charms. Cherishing the glorious beauty of truly being present with my kids AND locking them out of my bedroom so I can watch bad TV and eat chips while they bang on the door and yell, "Mom!" Summer, like us, is a great many things.”
I was snapping throughout the whole thing (The old sorority tactic for agreeing. Did you do this?) Yes yes yes. This is me. I go into big things like Holidays and Summer with a Griswald approach only to feel let down when it isn’t what I first pictured. And yet, what I need is not to set lower expectations. I like going big. I like bucket lists and Pinterest crafts and celebrating all of the things. It doesn’t have to be one or the other. It can be both. It’s And. It can be my every fantasy And it can kind of suck a little bit.
And this doesn’t just apply to summer. This is a forever mantra.
This is what it means to be an And Mom.
Wouldn’t it be great if we could see others like this too?
When we see the mom snap at her kids in the parking lot for goofing off can’t we also think “And I bet she reads them an extra book at bedtime.”
When we see the special craft activity that that one mom did with her child on the sosh meeds, can’t we also realize she probably put him in front of the tv later that afternoon so she could catch up on her instastories in peace.
And when we ourselves feel that little guilt start creeping in about whatever the guilty flavor of the month happens to be, can we also say to ourselves in an ever so kind, maybe even braggy type voice “and I also did that amazing thing too.”
Let’s be more like the And Moms.
I am a proud member And I think you should be too.