raising a mommy

raising a mommy

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

dads don't babysit

I know there are a thousand posts out there like this, but there are still two thousand posts, commercials, and ads that paint a picture of fathers as incompetent buffoons who don't know that they shouldn't use the whole tube of diaper rash cream when they change a baby's diaper. That is, if they even know where the diapers are. (Yes, those are actual scenarios that I read in a blog post. No, I will not link to it because I refuse to help the author boost her numbers.) So I'm going to make it 1001 "dads are parents, too" posts, because that is ridiculous.

Pregnant comedian Ali Wong stated: I can already see how there's this crazy double standard in our society of how it takes so little to be considered a great dad. It also takes so little to be considered a [horrible] mom."

I changed a word to keep it PG, but I don't think she was out of line in using the word she did. 

To a mom: Let me probe into the depths of your personal life to discover that you are breastfeeding, you use cloth diapers, you don't work outside the home, and you wear your baby in a carrier rather than using a stroller. But you don't make your own baby food purees? Don't you love your child?!

To a dad: You put your daughter's hair in a ponytail all by yourself? We're having a parade in your honor!

And don't even get me started on the lack of changing tables in so many men's restrooms.

Maybe if society as a whole starts to expect more of fathers, like, you know, that they be equal parenting partners (like so many already are) then more fathers will feel valued enough to stick around. The idea that fathers are inadequate or even slightly substandard as parents is ridiculous, to say the least. It's just as crazy as insinuating that women aren't as capable of handling themselves in the workplace as men.

If this post speaks to you, please share it. If it doesn't quite hit the right chord, but you agree that fathers are parents too and deserve to be treated as such, then please find an article or blog that does speak to you and share it.

This is not a rare occurrence in our house. And I can't tell you how many times he has left the house with sparkly princess stickers plastered all over his shirt.

Friday, September 9, 2016

fmf: heal

Here are the rules:
1. Write for five minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word.
2. Link back to Kate Motaung's blog with the rest of the Five Minute Friday-ers.
3. Comment on the person who linked up before you.

Please join us!

Today's prompt: heal

Oh, Kate. It's like you are speaking to my soul.

This week as been one of healing. Last week, I did not like my path. Today, I'm still not crazy about parts of it. But I'm healing.

Aside from my amazing support system, here is the most important factor that is helping me heal: I've been able to help others.

I have a friend who's in a tough spot. She's going through some really hard stuff, and it's hard on her friends and family, too. While I haven't been as close to her lately, we will always be nearly birthday buddies, and I can still be there for her while she continues her long journey of healing. And something else, perhaps just as important: I am here for those who are close to her. Don't forget the father of the baby that was miscarried. Don't forget the friends and family of the one diagnosed with cancer. Don't forget the loved ones who just watched their daugher/son/brother/sister/friend just attempt to take her own life. They, too, need help to heal.


Sunday, September 4, 2016

let's get rid of the stigma

Betty has cancer. There is no reason she should have cancer. She eats well. She exercises regularly. She lives in a safe environment and is surrounded by people who love and support her. Betty is a good person.

Betty knows she has cancer. She fights it every day of her life. Some days are easier than others. She feels okay, so she gets dressed, puts on some jewelry and a little make up, and goes out. She feels like a normal person for a little while and the world can't tell that she has cancer.

Other days are harder and she can't get out of bed. Sometimes these spells go on for days or weeks at a time and Betty has trouble remembering that there is life outside of her cancer.

Betty doesn't like to talk about her cancer. She doesn't want pity and she doesn't want people to treat her differently because of it. She's so much more than her cancer, and that's how she wants people to think about her. Yes, it is part of her, but it's not everything.

Even though she doesn't want it be the only facet of her that people see, Betty knows that she needs to talk about cancer. The more awareness there is, the more support there is, and the more people will know how to react to and support those who are fighting.

Now go back through those last five paragraphs and reread them. Only this time, replace the word "cancer" with the word "depression". If your attitude toward Betty changes, something needs to be different. The negative stigma around depression and anxiety and other mental health issues is literally costing people their lives, and it's up to us to work together to change it.

Maybe that girl who posts melancholy facebook statues every day is just being dramatic. Or maybe she's contemplating the best way to end her life because she actually truly believes the world would be better off without her. She is someone's daughter and sister and best friend.

Or maybe the fake smiles have the world fooled and nobody outside her most intimate circle even know because she doesn't want to talk about it because she's scared of the judgement of strangers or those who are supposed to be her friends.

Friday, September 2, 2016

fmf: path

Here are the rules:
1. Write for five minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word.
2. Link back to Kate Motaung's blog with the rest of the Five Minute Friday-ers.
3. Comment on the person who linked up before you.

Please join us!

Today's prompt: Path

I love adventure. I love not knowing what is coming next. I love seeing something new on the horizon or ahead of me on the path and diving in to it with excitement and energy. Twists and turns in the path can be so exciting.

But sometimes they can be hard, too, and that's the path I'm on right now. I saw it stretching out before me, before my family. We would add a third, become a family of five. Obviously there are bumps along the path. You expect them, often with a sense of delightful anticipation. A little challenge will keep things interesting, right?

Right now, Chris Rice seems to sing about my path:
Sometimes the way is lonely
And steep and filled with pain.
So if your sky is dark and pours the rain
Then cry to Jesus.
Cry to Jesus.
Cry to Jesus and live.

Even though I have the most amazing support system and so many people who love and care about me and the most unbelievable husband who surprises me with a pound of my favorite coffee just to make me smile, it's still hard.

But thankfully, that's not the end of the song and that's not the end of our story. Because I know that someday, I'll be here again:
Oh and when the love spills over
And music fills the night,
And when you can't contain your joy inside,
Then dance for Jesus.
Dance for Jesus.
Dance for Jesus and live.