I recently finished the book, Confessions of a Slacker Mom by Muffy Mead-Ferro. A friend read it and passed it along to me with the promise that it's an easy read and I'd be able to identify. Don't worry, I wasn't offended. I have confessed my own Slacker Mom tendencies here before. For the most part, I really enjoyed this book. I, like the author, subscribe to the theory that some parents just need to chill out and let their kids be kids. Let them explore, let them play with pots, pans and paper towel tubes rather than the latest greatest battery eating toys. Don't get me wrong, we have our fair share of the battery eaters around here but I've stopped buying toys lately for my kids. They get so much from friends and family at holidays and birthdays that they haven't even noticed my slacking. I admit that my house looks like Toys R Us threw up in here most days. We're working on it.
The author also suggests that the whole age of having your kid compete to go to the best preschool that will prepare them for Ivy League before they are out of the womb is nothing short of ridiculous. And, that kids need to learn that there are natural consequences in life to our decisions. She's not suggesting that we not protect our kids from real danger but that they should learn at some point that there are consequences to stealing your Brother's favorite Lightening McQueen. In our house, that consequence is getting clobbered to the floor by Brother and having him refuse to let you up until you repent. I don't even need to intervene. Lesson learned on both parts.
The only thing I didn't like about the book (and it's a minor thing) is that the author repeatedly says that she wants her kids to be proud of the fact that she works outside of the home and she hopes that will empower her daughter to be a stronger woman. She also comments repeatedly that her nephew is very proud of his mother, who is an attorney, for what she does and she hopes that will effect the way he sees women. That's all fine and good but what about the other side of the coin? I stay home with my kids and I think that they will be equally as proud of their mom and the areas in which I excel. They will never doubt that I am a strong woman. As a matter of fact, with Big Daddy's job and the natural single parenting that gets passed along to me because of it, I believe that they will never be able to deny my strength or be proud of how hard I work to raise them. I think that the author didn't do enough to encourage the Mothers that don't "work" outside of the home. It just peeved me a little to read a book that I really liked but felt like in the end, it wasn't really giving me the props I deserve.
I think that the whole working moms/stay at home moms debate is ludicrous. I think we are all moms who desperately love our kids and would do anything for them. We want what is best for them and do our best to make sure that happens. Period. Why can't we all just agree that being a Mom in any form is hard but also the most rewarding thing we could possibly experience this side of Heaven.
At any rate, this is a good book and I recommend it but don't say you haven't been warned if you don't work outside of the home. By the way, I never did get to the whole point of the post so that will have to wait until tomorrow's post. I've rambled on too long now and if I keep going on and on, my Slacker Mom card will be revoked.