Empowered Idea: Stay at Home Mom Manifesto: Do It For Yourself

I was on the phone yesterday doing an interview for a story when I mentioned that I’m going to be a stay at home mom with Harper, rather than finding another job. The

woman I was speaking with was a well accomplished Manhattan attorney — and mom. “Well, don’t stay home for your kids,” she told me. “They won’t remember. Make sure you do it for yourself.”

She said that when she told her 23-year-old daughter that she’d stayed home with her Saturday nights because she couldn’t bear to leave her, the daughter deadpanned: “That was stupid.”

A reader on MommyMoi recently left me a similar comment: “All I know is that FOR ME, the nine years I stayed home with my children (mainly because of unemployment) were not good. I love being at work, and my children (now 13, 15 and 17) don’t even remember that I was ever home. They understand that I love my job just about as much as I love them. Of course, I was able to arrange my hours so I could be home in the evenings. Most studies I have seen indicate that children benefit most from parents who are happy, so you have to decide what will make you happiest. For me, it was definitely work outside the home!”

Who Has The Greatest Mom In The World?

Do you have the greatest mom in the world? Tell us about her for the chance to win her a FREE $50 Target Gift Card.

Is your mom the best mother ever? Of course she is — so tell us why.

In honor of Mother’s Day on May 8, The Empowered Mom℠ wants to hear from you on what makes your mom the greatest. Whether you’re lucky enough to still have your mom around or whether she’s passed away, send in your tributes, fond memories and posts about your mom by Friday, May 6, for the chance to win a $50 Target gift card (go ahead, treat your mom to a present).

We all believe – there isn’t a day of the year that mom won’t be special to us! For mom is the one who helps us to overcome all the hiccups, is the one who stood like a rock in our lean and she is the one really means the world to us.

Would You (of Do You) Read This Blog If You Did Not Have Kids?

Good Read from Mom-101

This week, I was minding my own business on the commute to work, picking my nose, reading about the Beastie Boys, daydreaming about cheese, adjusting a wedgie–whatever things you do in the privacy of a packed A-train car filled with anonymous commuters.

As the train pulled up to the West 4th Street station, I felt a hand on my shoulder. I turned to face this young woman with the sweetest smile and a fedora, who I expected to be giving directions to, or thanking her for pointing out that I had dropped my MetroCard. Instead, she blurted out in the brief second before the doors closed, that while she has no kids, she reads my blog.

It kind of made my day.

At least after I nervously replayed my train ride, hoping that she didn’t see me doing something totally embarrassing like knocking over an old lady to grab the last seat.

(But I didn’t. I only do that on the commute home when my feet really hurt.)

What stayed with me all week, though, was the email Kelly sent me later that morning. As I told her, I  think it’s too good not to share it.

This Kiss – This Kiss (with props to Faith Hill)

Royal newlyweds Prince William and Catherine Middleton kissed twice on the balcony of Buckingham Palace in front of family and ecstatic crowds.

The married couple, who officially became the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Friday morning, smiled and waved before thousands of screaming spectators and a worldwide audience of more than 2 billion people as they made the customary post-wedding appearance on the palace balcony.

In the most carefully choreographed of weddings — with every moment planned to the second — the couple’s balcony kiss was the one wildcard, and it did not disappoint. The heir to the British throne first exchanged a short peck with his beloved bride and then leaned in to kiss her again about two minutes later. The Abbey bells rang, the overhead fighter planes hummed and heart-shaped balloons floated above. The crowd erupted in cheers and became a sea of waving flags.

The Bet Behind “Green Eggs and Ham”

Bennett Cerf was the co-founder of Random House.  As part of his duties as publisher, he also had an envious job — he was Dr. Seuss’ editor.   And on March 12, 1957, Random House published Dr. Seuss’ masterpiece, The Cat and the Hat.  At 65 pages, the book is notable not only because of its well-deserved fame, but also because Dr. Seuss used only 225 unique words in writing it.  Cerf was impressed — so much so that he challenged Seuss to do one better.  He wagered that Seuss could not author a book — a meaningful one — using fifty unique words or fewer.

Of Things Related to The Royal Wedding and Things Up Your Nose

I love reading other mom blogs in a seemingly never ending pursuit to find inspiration amongst some of the great writers out there.  So, here is what I am wondering?  As I’m combing through all these posts, why not share some of the really good ones with you?  Yeah, I know – why didn’t I think of that.

So here are some from today:

I don’t care who designed Kate’s dress.

Harper will be six tomorrow, and I have a field trip with Meredith’s class (Chinese Buffet!). Meredith will be eight on Friday, and I have a field trip with Harper’s class (Zoo!). We have two birthday parties scheduled for Saturday and one for Sunday. Things are hectic, but it’s a Happy Hectic.

“Oh! Wait a second,” you may say, “I have noticed a glaring omission in your List o’ Hectic! Prince William! Kate Middleton! Have you no desire to put on a hat and participate in the jollification? EVEN ANDERSON COOPER WILL BE THERE!”

Empowered Information: Why Marriages Take a Nose Dive After the First Child is Born

Along with shopping for sippy cups and strollers, expectant parents may want to consider another task for their to-do list: honing their marriage skills.

Numerous studies have shown that a couples’ satisfaction with their marriage takes a nose dive after the first child is born. Sleepless nights and fights over whose turn it is to change diapers can leach the fun out of a relationship.

Dominick Reuter for the Wall Street Journal

Now, a growing number of mental-health professionals are advising couples to undergo pre-baby counseling to hash out marital minefields such as divvying up baby-related responsibilities, money issues and expectations for sex and social lives. A growing number of hospitals, midwives and doulas (birth coaches who provide physical and emotional support) are teaching relationship skills alongside childbirth education classes.

About two-thirds of couples see the quality of their relationship drop within three years of the birth of a child, according to data from the Relationship Research Institute in Seattle, a nonprofit organization focused on strengthening families. Conflict increases and, with little time for adult conversation and sex, emotional distance can develop.

The Empowered Mom says: What a buzz kill, isn’t it.  Seriously, if that’s not some of the best birth control, then I don’t know what is!  And, by the way — If you have kids, then you already know the information presented in this Wall Street Journal article is NO JOKE.  That’s what’s so frightening.  It’s kinda like we wait and wish and hope and pray for the marriage, family, kids, dog, house…. and then BAM! The reality sometimes, well, sucks. Or rather, its repercussions on some components of our lives flat-out – well…falls flat.

There’s more to come – keep reading.