The Idea Dude


Sunday, May 11, 2008

Supermoms and a man's perspective

I saw an article about what it takes to be a supermom today. At first, I thought it was wonderful article celebrating Mother's Day. After all, I too have a super mom and I'm married to one as well.

Then I thought about all the Mom blogs I've read in the last two years since starting TheGoodBlogs. I can't recall out of the 600-800 blogs I've read, any of them ever refer to themselves as supermoms. How tough it must be for any mother to think that there are supermoms out there because from all that I've read none of them are perfect and they definitely do not have super powers.

Instead they have plenty of bad days, mundane days, days where everything goes wrong. Too often they have very little time for themselves. It's car pooling, cooking, cleaning, worrying about sick kids, doing homework and darning socks. Hardly the stuff one associates with super heroes. Sometimes they wonder what if they took a different path in their lives. What if they chose to have a career without children. What if they had them earlier or later.

My point is that most mothers don't think about being perfect mothers. I doubt any of them aspire to being super. They simply wake up every morning and instinctively do what needs to be done. There's no handbook and often there's no safety net. Sometimes (and maybe often) they wonder whether what they are doing are the right things.

I prefer to call them ordinary miracles (inspired by a song by Sheryl Crow). Because most of what mothers do are ordinary everyday things. But they do them with big hearts, selflessly and tirelessly. They are miracles because as sons, daughters and spouses, we love them for who they are and what they do for us each and every day. They make every day extraordinary for the rest of us. We would not survive without them.

For me, super doesn't cut it. Special does because it's how they manage to make us feel. It's the place we have in our hearts for them. They in turn have places in their hearts for us. It's about the simple things, the sweet kiss after skinned knees, the hug after a bad day, cheers from the sidelines on a sports day. It's about the little things they do that we often take for granted but they never ask for praise, reward or recognition in return.

I heard on the radio from a competition organizer that when mothers win cash prizes, they often spend the bulk of it on others instead of themselves. I can believe that, don't you?

Mother's Day is a time for celebration and recognition so at least once a year we let them know they are indeed special.

Yeah! Have an awesome Mother's Day.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Chicken soup at your doorstep

I read a blog this week on TheGoodBlogs. I've lost the url now but the story I read hung around for a day or so. The blogger told how he had locked his keys in his house, his saga trying to find his spare at his mothers, finally getting a locksmith, then rushed to a wedding, forgot the directions and then sat in a traffic jam. Yet at the end of it, he laughed at it all. And blogged about it.

For me, this is what the blogosphere is about. The digital chicken soup. Real people telling real stories that let everyone else know, we're all more alike than we realize. That we all have tough times and we can inspire each other. Not with fancy words or political rhetoric. Just a simple story about us.

The best stories that moved me have always been personal. They are not always success stories, but real stories. Mom blogs are the best in that regard. The blogosphere is a great gathering place for moms because often their lives are immersed in their children. They see very little else because they have little time for anything else. But through their blogs, they connect with each other at their own time, in their own way. Conversations can be made between the carpool and making dinner. Tears and laughter are shared willingly and resonate because more often than not, the reader on the other side is a mom.

That is the magic of the Internet.

Somehow we've cheapened that with spam blogs, corporate blogs, blogs with so much advertising you can't find the message. Like small quaint towns that grow into large sprawling cities drowning in smog and billboards. Imagine if no-one could make any money from their blogs, we would probably remove 99% of all the digital trash. And the last 1% would be pure honey. Real stories from real people... As John Lennon once sang, "Imagine.."