Some of the emails I get in response to my column are hilarious. Apparently, a good portion of the northern Indianapolis suburbs are full of perfect wives and mothers who feel it is their right, nay their Jesus-driven duty, to point out my flaws and offer me advice on how to have the perfect family. Here are some of their suggestions.
- Never ever lose your temper. Good mothers don’t freak out when their daughters spill nail polish remover on antique maple tables. Shame on you for throwing a casserole dish.
- Never try and spice up your marriage by watching an R-rated movie with Scarlett Johansson or Brad Pitt. Violence and sex should be banned from theaters. Clearly you’re headed for divorce if you can’t find inspiration at church. Sinner!
- Never become frustrated with your spouse! The perfect wife will have her hair coiffed and make-up on, ready to serve a home-cooked gourmet meal to her husband when he returns from his hard day at work. He does not want to hear about your hectic afternoon nor does he have the time to clean up after himself. Stop pestering and start doting.
- Never say anything bad about your children! Babies are a gift from God and those belonging to a good mom would never lie, cheat, or choose X-box over homework. Heaven-bound kids are always bathed, behaved and beautiful.
- Never consider plastic surgery. Stretch marks and saggy boobs are Jesus’ gift to you for bearing precious little angels. Stop being so selfish and join the PTO. Oh, you work full-time? The horror! Your kids are going to all end up in prison.
I think what these women really want me to do is stop being honest, because the truth is, life is not always awesome. Kids sometimes stink, and so do husbands, and, occasionally, I would like to sport a C-cup bra. Why can’t we embrace the difficulties of parenthood and marriage, find some humor in them, and congratulate each other on trying our best? Why must it always be about who’s the better mom/wife and who’s got the most perfect life? Gag. I’m just trying to make sure my kids wear deodorant and have lunch money on most days; I don’t have the energy to mask my feelings and pretend like I’m thrilled to be vacuuming when all I really want to is to chug a bottle of Cabernet.
So we’re not perfect. So we don’t always want to spend time with our kids. So what if we complain about our husbands being thoughtless pigs? If being the perfect mom and wife means never expressing how I truly feel, then I’ll take being mediocre any day. Peace out.