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Friday, September 26, 2008


“Well, I’m a more of a Mom than you are,” I said and then I pushed her into a conveniently placed mud puddle which somehow happened to be in the hall outside the school library.

I was having a conversation in my mind with a particularly perfect mom. She’s at school every day volunteering, gets up (or claims to) at 4 am to run and do butt lifting exercises. Her kids are all named to sound like cereal (Quisp, Crunch, and Shredded Wheat) and they all play soccer, while in the chess club and the student council. They wear matching sweaters in their Christmas photos. She drives a massive SUV and has her roots retouched every two weeks. She’s a professional mom, a competitive mom, and I can’t stand her. I think it’s the way that she inserts snippets of her perfect-hood into the conversation. You know the type, “Oh, my sons would never eat fruit snacks,” as if my son was doing crack. And, it's fruit leather, you idiot.

A couple of weeks ago, my son told me that one of her kids eats his own boogers and the other one cries at school a lot. I secretly rejoice in the first bit of information and get teary eyed over the second.

Mompetition. Mom Competition. I hate it. Maybe it’s just a woman thing. When I talk to my husband about this, he just snorts and gets a blank look on his face. I honestly don’t think there’s anything like this in the Man World. I mean, they have full contact sports where they can work it out. Or they have that ability to call each other an asshole without the threat of it turning into a month long snit fest.

The thing about Mompetition is that it gets inserted into conversations, casually and before you know it, Moms are one-upping each other right and left. I once broke up an almost sure to be fist fight that started with one mom talking about how busy they are (certain Mompetition fightin’ words).

A wise woman once said to me, “When you have one child, they take up all your time. When you have a second, they both take up all your time. When you have more, they take up all your time.” No mom is more busy than another. And, come on ladies, our kids are all not perfect. Quite honestly, I just love hearing about the struggles so much more than a litany of little Johnny’s goodness. I find it refreshing to talk to other moms about how our kids assert their independence or how they, as all humans do, mess up.

Want to start a really interesting conversation? Ask other moms what their child’s most recent learning experience was. Rarely will women start trying to one up each other showing off their kid’s mistakes. In fact, there just might be a bit of relief in sharing some really real experiences.

1 comment:

  1. This was an awesome post, and one close to my heart, as I'm the Mom in jeans, the mom in the grubby subcompact car, the mom whose son hates any organized sport, the mom who sometimes cheers inside a little bit after drop-off time in the morning. But I love my kids more than my own life, whether they're achieving or struggling to figure things out. Thanks, again.


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