As a female, my life has always been a battle. Battle for equality, battle to be heard, to be seen, to be taken seriously. As girls, we quickly learn the rules: the struggle is real, the struggle is every day, the struggle is LIFE. Prove your worth, your value, prove you are more than the sum of your parts, more than a pretty face. Oh, you like sports?? Prove it: name all of the stats of your favorite team since the dawn of time. Men don't have to be walking encyclopedias of sports knowledge to prove they are real fans, to earn the right to wear the jersey. Oh, you like math?? Prove it: don't ever get a single question wrong in class. Oh, you are strong?? Prove it: don't you dare ever cry or show emotion, because emotions are weak and girly and it must be that time of the month.
I thought all of that would end when I became a mother. Motherhood is the great equalizer, right? We are all women, all in it together, my sisters in arms will guide and protect me. Finally, equal footing and no competition! Finally, no need to prove myself. See- I can make a baby too! Look at that mom: she adopted! How awesome is that? Look at this mom with fertility issues: she worked and sacrificed so much to be a mama. Aren't we all wonderful and strong and happy?! Motherhood is the mother lode. We can now be free since we have joined the motherhood club. But wait...you don't breastfeed? You had a c-section? You don't send notes in your child's lunch? You don't buy organic gluten-free snacks? Oh, you are that mom who volunteers for field trips, is President of the PTA and always looks put together. How great for you. Sure must be nice to not have to work. Oh, only one child? That must be so easy. Wow, five kids? So lucky to have enough money to afford to feed them all. You stay at home? Wish I had all of that free time. Is motherhood still tough for you? Prove it: swear on your Ergo baby carrier, give me an alphabetized list of your challenges. Come on ladies, don't we battle enough with the harsh world simply because we are women? Can't we please love and support and encourage? Can't we listen without interrupting? Can't we all just get along? No?? I expect more from my fellow warrior mamas. Give me more. Give yourself more. Stop worrying about the proof; the proof is in that little puddin' you are holding and raising and loving and teaching. That is all the proof we need.