Sunday, July 3, 2011


 I recently signed up for 30 days worth of writing prompts with a Self Reliance theme. I'm actually enjoying all the deep thinking and self analysis that goes along with this challenge, and while I am not quite organized enough to have polished versions ready to publish on a daily basis, I am going to try to share a few of my repsonses here as I get to them.

The first is on being real. Here goes:

Imitation is Suicide. Insist on yourself; never imitate. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

I guess that we all have a tendency to emulate others. We see something cool and we want to try, have, or be it. That's why so many teenagers spend hours so their hair and make up look just right. Even after all the effort, they still aren't happy. It always feels fake when you are trying to be someone else. Not that there is anything wrong with role models, or trying to be our own best, but that's all we can ever truly be- ourselves.

I know I have tried to be more like others. Sometimes I am inspired to do a better job, but it always comes back to the fact that I can never be what someone else is. As a mom, I always wanted to be one of those calm and patient mothers, the ones who always have homemade organic cookies baking, and all natural crafts laid out in their beautifully furnished and uncluttered homes- they don't yell or cuss and when they do have a mess, they smile and patiently take care of it through their magical mama-ness. Whatever. I am sick of trying to be that mom.

I'm not that mom. I have the cookies and crafts going, but the house is a mess. There's flour and glitter and even dog hair in the corners. At least it's not in the cookies though, right? Even when it's at its' cleanest, this old house is not exactly not beautiful. Calm is not the best word to describe me either. I have a fiery Latina temper, and I try to keep it in check, but when I'm pushed-'s ugly.

I am patient about kids exploring and playing and being kids. I am not patient with whining or attitudes though. I yell more than I'd like to, and I sometimes cuss too. Good grief, I even drink margaritas- in a mason jar no less. And I hate cleaning. The Martha Stewart moms would be appalled, I'm sure.

Whenever I set my sights on being that perfect mom in her perfect house with her perfect kids, I am going to fail though, and end up feeling lousy about the whole thing. I could work on the yelling, and maybe get some real margarita glasses. A maid would be nice too, but other than that, I give up. I accept that I am a pretty fun mom and my kids love our home and being with me. Their friends seem to like it too.

Who wants an imitation anyway? I mean, real crab or imitation? Real cheese or imitation? Duh- real is better. And why would I want an imitation me, when I can have the real one? Even if I am both crabby and cheesy at times, I am happy to be the real me.


  1. I think we all wish we were those patient non-yelling moms sometimes.
    I yell more than I'd like to as well and I am NOT a morning person.
    If I wasn't lacking in patience, I'd be lacking somewhere else. My kids are perfectly happy, so I'm sure I'm doing just fine.
    I like this post. It makes me feel better about being the kind of mom I am.

  2. Thanks Liz. I agree - Happy kids are a pretty good indicator that we're doing OK :-) even if we do yell every now and then.

  3. You are pretty damn real to me!

  4. This made me laugh. 3 times. About the dog hair not in the cookies. About the cussing and the yelling. And about drinking the margaritas out of the mason jar. FINALLY someone who is real!! I like that you do all that stuff. It makes me like you. And I'm sure I'm not the only one. :)
    (And I'm pretty sure if it's a good margarita---or if you drink more than one---they taste just the same in a proper glass or a mason jar. Just sayin'!
    Keep being a fun mom and screw being perfect. Sometimes I wonder just how happy Martha Stewart is. And then I remember she's rich.

  5. Thanks :-) And yes, a good margarita is still tasty, even in a jar.
    I think the only reason Martha Stewart can pull it off is that she has lots of hired help. I bet if I had a staff, my house would look a lot better. I'd probably look a lot better myself, but oh well.....
    Enjoy the day,

  6. My mom has a cute picture of a little elf sitting on a mushroom with the caption "Be Yourself - There's No One Nicer." I try to remember that, because it's so tempting to think that this person or that person is nicer/better/smarter/prettier than me. They aren't - they are just different, and that's good. The world would be a boring place if we were all the same. :)


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