Saturday, May 12, 2012

Is being a mom a job?

With Mother’s Day coming up there has been a lot of talk about how being a mom is the hardest job a woman can have.  But is being a mom really a job?  Is being a wife a job or is being a daughter or an aunt a job? When I asked my husband if he thought being a mom was a job he laughed and said that he thought it was hard work but not a job. To call it a job makes it sound like you get paid, vacation time, a 401k and health insurance.

Being a mom is a role and a relationship.    To call it a job sounds like it is unsatisfying.  I have had many jobs and I had them for the money not for the love of the job.  If you love your job, I imagine you consider it your career.  I have not heard of being a mom referred to as a career.   I do read a lot of blogs but not all of them so maybe someone has.

Why isn’t being a father considered the hardest job a man can have?  Maybe we need to focus more on just being a parent.  There are plenty of stay-at-home dads in this modern day and age.  Just turn on the TV and watch Up All Night.  After a baby is weaned from the breast, I think each parental role is equally important.  Yet we put so much emphasis on being a mom.  Maybe that is why there are so many dead beat dads?  Maybe they do not see the validity in being a father and think that mom can do it all. 

The other day someone asked what I do and I pointed to my 1 year old son and said that I take care of that guy.  I do not have a job, I have a life.  I am a full time mom/stay at home mom (but I don’t stay home).  I do this blog thing but I don’t make money at it so I wouldn't call it a job.  I am a writer and I have been writing actively sine I was 9 years old.  I am more than a mom, I am a wife, a daughter, an aunt, a neighbor, a friend, a person.  These aren't jobs and I think to call motherhood a job is to cheapen the role of motherhood.  (Is it just me or when you hear the word job do you think blow or hand? I hope that doesn't makes me sound like a prostitute)

Mother’s Day can be very hard for some people, including myself.  My mom died 6 and a half years ago.  I miss her everyday but even more so around Mother’s Day.  I also think about the women who struggle with infertility and it breaks my heart.  Mother’s Day must be hard for them because they have yet to achieve that role of being a mom which they desire so very much.  I imagine Mother’s Day is hard for those women who choose to not have kids.  I think not having kids is a very valid life choice but society often assumes that if you are a female of a certain age than you must have kids.  Not every woman wants to be a mom and it is much better if these women stick to their guns and don’t have children.  There are plenty of babies born to mothers who gave birth for all the wrong reasons.  Mother’s Day must be really hard on all the children who have been given up by their moms but also hard on the women who gave up those children.

Even though I deal with the loss of my mother, I do like the concept of Mother’s Day.  I do think it is important to take a day to celebrate moms.  Last Mother’s Day I had been a mom for all of 10 days and was still recovering from my Cesarean.  But I did have a very lovely day even though I did not feel like a mom.  Sometimes I still don’t feel like a mom because I feel like the same person I was 2 years ago or even 20 years ago (even though I have changed).  Even though I spend every day taking care of my baby and think that I am a good mom and have been told that I am by others.  The day before Orion’s birthday, we had pictures taken at JC Penny and some included Patrick’s mom and step-dad.  The photographer said something along the lines of mom wipe the drool off baby’s chin and it took me a moment to react.  Was she talking to me?  Oh, yes, right, I am Orion’s mom!  Maybe I will feel more like a mom when Orion starts calling me mom? 

Mother’s Day does not have to be a huge fancy production.  There does not have to be expensive brunches, Champagne, and diamonds.  It should be something thoughtful and easy on mom.  I used Mother’s Day as an excuse to get something I really wanted, a sewing machine which I bought close to 2 months ago.  Tomorrow, I hope to sleep in, get a manicure and a pedicure, and spend a few hours without my baby.  I rarely get alone time and would love an opportunity to just sit alone and do nothing for a bit.  I also spent $10 on a worthy cause to save the lives of mothers.  

This Mother’s Day stop and take a look at the person you are raising and supporting.  Think about what example you are setting, what values you are instilling, and what kind of person you hope they will turn out to be.  Think about all the people struggling to become mothers.  Think of those who have lost their mom due to death or abandonment.  For just $10 you can save the lives of 3 women and prevent their children from being orphaned.  Please check these links and make a donation:


  1. I agree entirely. I'm glad you found a way to say it that sounds so respectful =)

    1. Thank you so much! I really appreciate that you took the time to read and comment.