Hey, everyone, and welcome to "I Hear Ya, Sister," a weekly
column about ... hearing and sisters (kind of). First, an introduction. It’s
very nice to meet you all. My name is Rebecca. I’m a 33-year-old writer and mother
of four (including one set of twins) living in Los Angeles. I post daily
musings/essays/rants on my personal blog, Girl’s Gone Child, where I have
been documenting my life and times as a parent since I first became one in
2005. AND! I am pleased to announce that beginning this week, I’ll be reporting
for duty here on Mom.me every Thursday in what I hope will become a really
special and awesome space to share and discuss life as a human woman/mother.
The original idea behind this “column” was to be something
other than advice (because I have none) and more of a conversation … as in, “Oh
hey there! This mothering thing is weird and nuanced and impossible to pin
down or label so let’s just talk about ALL the things and support each other,
The parenting community is AWESOME but it’s also a little pushy in the advice department. There is always a new list or hashtag or article or book or New York Magazine cover story trying to push us down and pit us against each other and it’s totally lame and rude. In the words from that classic film "Network," “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore!”
I never believed in "The Mommy Wars" and I still don’t ...
Except I’m not really that mad, actually. I
think we owe it to ourselves and each other and (wo)mankind to work together
and support each other and hold hands and play light as a feather/stiff as a
board and braid each other’s hair and draw on each other’s Converse and make
each other soup and talk to each other honestly about childbirth and
breastfeeding, curfews and screen time, religion and childcare, sex, lack of sex, insert subject here.
I’m talking about SUPPORT, of course. Support as NECESSITY; not
just for one kind of mother but for all kinds of mothers — be you crunchy or
attachment or free-range or none of the above. Be you a bio
parent or caretaker, nanny or aunt, friend, supporter of mothers, fathers,
people existing on this planet and making it a better, more peaceful place. My goal for this space is to attract a
community that is PRO LIFECHOICE CONVERSATION. Because we are desperate for that, aren’t we?
Hell, I sure am.
I never believed in "The Mommy Wars" and I still don’t, but I
do believe that controversy sells magazines and the best way to bring in a
large audience is to be unkind and angry. Meanness sells and in an industry as
massive as the parenting industry, we are easy targets. (Been on Facebook
I had an epiphany at a blogging convention recently and it
went something like this: THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS AN EXPERT in this field. We
all have so much to teach each other and who is not to say that the woman in
the audience listening to the woman on the stage doesn’t have ideas that are
JUST as important, eye-opening, noteworthy? Nobody will ever be the authority
on anything parenting because we are all SUCH different cases in this study,
We are so much better off listening to all of the stories and building our own adventures from there.
Like many of you, I celebrated Independence Day last weekend. I watched the fireworks at my parents’ house in San Diego with my four
children and when they asked “What is today, again?” I told them about America’s
birthday. “We were born, as a nation, the moment we become independent as
I hope we can come together as a community, agree to disagree, listen to each other and speak from experience in a way that is sisterly.
Which is kind of a metaphor to be used in every situation. FREEDOM is about listening to ourselves and respecting
the VARIOUS STATES of others.
Independence isn’t about isolation. It’s about having the freedom
to think for ourselves. It’s about surrounding ourselves with different
territories and respecting those who do, as well — EVEN when they think and feel
Anyway, we just celebrated Independence Day, here in
America, and I wanted to take this time to honor all of those of you who flex
your independence as thinkers and feelers and instinctual creatures. This is a
space where I hope we can come together as a community, agree to disagree,
listen to each other and speak from experience in a way that is sisterly. This
is a place I hope to unite our different states of motherhood, because while
the Internet has certainly created a community of mothers that completely rules
(I would have been lost without this space over the years), it has also
capitalized on an unnecessary amount of controversy and link bait.
Let’s do something cool and real and honest, shall we?
Something with the sole purpose of speaking and listening, sharing and supporting and HEARING each other — as mothers, as women, as sisters.
That said, I am calling on YOU to comment on what you would
like to talk about next week — from college to breast-feeding to sex on an airplane.
(Have you ever? I mean, I can’t even pee in an airplane bathroom so I’m, like,
wtf? I have so many questions.)
Whatever topic resonates most in the comments will be the
go-to convo for next week and so on and so on and scooby dooby dooby.
My hope is that my rambles will lead to your genius and
together we can offer different parenting perspectives to better us all.