I have daughters who don’t want to be mothers. At all. No marriage, no babies, no way, no how. They have plans, they’ll tell you, big plans. Maybe a teacher, maybe an artist, maybe living at my house forever and getting a job watching TV (that’s right, don’t be afraid to live your dreams, girls!).
There are days I think I must be doing something really wrong. Do I make motherhood look like that much of a drag? Sure, sometimes I’m forgetful or frazzled, occasionally short-tempered and often woefully unprepared for the big questions like where do babies come from, how are light bulbs made, and how to dead people actually get to heaven.
(But on the plus side, I usually say yes to birthday cake for breakfast on the day after, yes to staying up until midnight on New Year’s Eve, and yes to just about every single request for a post-tuck in glass of water.)
Then there are days I think I might be doing something right. At least for right now, my daughters firmly believe they could grow up to be whatever they want, including a mother, or not. I’d like to think I had some small part in raising girls with spectacular self-confidence, raging curiosity, and single-mindedness.
For now, I don’t dwell on it, and I sincerely hope that I never will. After all, when they say they’re never going to be mommies, I say okay. But I tell them that it’s always okay to change your mind someday. Because for them, re-framing motherhood may be as simple as the knowledge that they don’t have to be one if they don’t want to.
Bio: Amy Brozio-Andrews was born and raised on that side of the Hudson River; now she lives on this side. While she loves being a mother, she also really likes a lot of the other stuff she gets to do: book reviewer, librarian, amateur genealogy. She’s Mamapalooza’s Logistical Coordinator.
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Photo credit Amy Brozio-Andrews