Friday, April 3, 2009

The 1950s Sitcom Mom

I have a new bread recipe, thanks to this book. I should have taken a picture of the two loaves I made yesterday but one was eaten up quite quickly and the other went to a friend. It was so easy to make and it reminded me of some old commercial where the mom was baking some instant thing in the kitchen but threw some flour on her shirt before she presented it to her family. You know, look like you slaved away all day and must be one hell of a chef to even pull it off.

Speaking of TV moms, I read a conversation online between stay-at-home moms and whether or not these women were doing a disservice to their children with the hot breakfasts and home-made cookies after school. It got me thinking about my kids, and more specifically, my daughter. I had not browsed this site in quite some time, and to be honest, really don't even think of myself as a sahm. Probably because we are rarely home, and when we are, we are busy with school stuff. Homeschooling feels like a job to me. At least in the sense that I do a lot of reading and prep work for the kids, not to mention all the time spent on arranging the calendar and activities.

It is funny how the 50s mom, with the pretty dresses and the perfectly groomed children and house are still such a big part of our consciousness. I suppose that this is the epitome of the sainted mother. Of course, now the bar has been raised even farther. One must also work, pull in a great salary at a great job and be the perfect mother, house keeper, etc... I couldn't fall further from the mark, nor would I ever strive for such an artificial and glazed lifestyle but my kids do have a little 'Leave it to Beaver' going on in their lives.

We snuggle and read under the covers when it is rainy outside and choose not to leave the house. I make, from scratch, most of their meals and treats. I am always around when they need to chat or want a hug. They have it pretty good but I wonder what they'll make of this when they grow up? I certainly hope they will look back fondly on their childhood. Will Alex expect his wife to whip up grand family meals or even stay home to educate their children? And Izzy? My mind is all a flutter wondering what kind of choices she'd make in the future.

I guess my first priority is for them to see they have choices. Yes, be prepared to work and take care of yourself, hopefully in a profession they enjoy. But also remember family is important and be at peace with the choices you make for your kids. I hope they see that gender roles can vary too. And that I stayed home for many reasons but first and foremost is because I want to be here. If Alex grew up and had a partner willing to work while he cared for the kids, I'd say more power to him.

Whatever happens, whatever they do, I hope I impart to them the notion that happy parents breed happy children. So work if that makes you happy. Stay home with the kids, if you are able and prefer. Just be happy.

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