Growing up there were two things I knew I wanted to be and was meant to be: a writer and a mother. As Mother's Day approaches, I've been reflecting on this past year of motherhood, and I'm pretty sure this is the year I get my first grey hair. Jokes aside, I've also been thinking about LinkedIn's attempt to be more inclusive by adding "Stay at Home Mom/Parent" as a job. It's certainly a good step forward, but I think it's still going to take time for people to change their mentality about how society views and thinks of parents, and especially mothers. We've all heard parents say that the most important job they've ever had is being a parent. Here are a few reasons why we need to take that more seriously and stop punishing mothers for doing the hardest job in the world.
Moms are Master Project Managers
This should be so obvious, but most of us probably have never thought of it this way. Moms tend to be the ones managing the entire household, which means planning meals, when to restock toilet paper, planning activities for the kids, making sure everyone wakes up on time and goes to the toilet when they need to, it's a never-ending list of projects, but moms get it done. And we take on everything from start to finish. How many moms in heterosexual relationships have to set up a task for their husband in order for them to be able to do it? Sometimes we have to set it up and finish it, and our hubbies only have to do one little part somewhere in between. You want a job done? Hire a mom. Or an eldest daughter, but we'll save that for another blog.
Moms are used to working in fast paced environments.
Have you ever turned around for 5 seconds and suddenly your child is all the way up the stairs and running around tearing everything apart in the farthest room he could be in? Yeah, moms aren't just used to fast-paced environments, they have to be faster than chubby little toddler feet. Moms have to be able to pivot fast before something or someone breaks. And I haven't forgotten those early days when I'd fly out of bed like a ninja whenever baby cried at night; whereas, apparently you can't hear crying on my husband's side of the bed.
Not to mention, in a fast paced environment you have to be able to redirect as needed, prioritize, and re-prioritize. For example, many a morning, I can count on my son interrupting my workout with a big ol' stinky poo, which means I've got to pivot my schedule and routine, and re-priotize. Poo takes priority. Always. But then depending on what time it is, either we finish the workout after the poo, or we finish it some time later in the day, or sometimes we just have to say, oh well, I'll pick it back up tomorrow.
Moms know how to think outside the box and resourcefully.
You see another Amazon box, I see a space shuttle.
Moms are leaders and team players.
Moms are the big boss, but in order to lead you also have to know how to be a team player. So, we give our kids (and partner) what they need to flourish and sometimes even let them lead. We recognize when someone is in need of extra support and provide it. We recognize when an issue requires a solution and work together with our teammates to resolve the issue, and we do our best to create a positive and productive environment for all to thrive.
Moms know how to think big picture and possess acute attention to detail.
The big picture is we're having family fun day at Disneyland. The details that will make this day successful include: making sure the diaper bag is packed with extra clothes and diapers, preparing snacks, filling water bottles, ensuring the car has gas, planning our ride route and parade schedule, planning potty breaks, games for the car ride, games for the long lines, packing a portable charger, and everyone put on sunscreen?
Moms are Problem Solvers.
Do you know how many cloth diaper companies were created because a mom couldn't find a diaper that worked for her kids and had the features she wanted? A lot. I've said this already and I'll say it again. Moms get it done. Moms always figure out how to get things done, even if they have to make it themselves.
So, wake up people, it's 2021. If a woman takes a year or two, or twenty to raise her kids, she hasn't been on vacation for twenty years, okay? Or if a working woman is a mother, she's not "distracted" or "less productive," because she's doing her best to not only turn a profit for you, but also properly raise the next generation. I guarantee you working mothers are more productive than any other employee, as long as they have the support they need to be able to literally do it all. I hope with all my heart and soul and every fibre in my being that this pandemic really opens up a work culture change that values parents and sees them as assets.
Happy Mother's Day every day to all the mothers and mother-figures. You are AMAZING.