Saturday, January 23, 2016

An Army of Mommy Bloggers

I have lots of kind friends who read my blog (or at least pretend to) and encourage me to write.  "You should do this for a living!" say some of the more indulgent and/or delusional among them.  I would love to do this for a living, but unfortunately, so would about a billion other "Mommy Bloggers" out there. There are more Mommy Bloggers than there are screaming toddlers at a Wiggles concert (or anywhere, really).  If you literally made an army out of Mommy Bloggers, they could probably conquer the earth in about 3 days and have a delicious, nutritious dinner waiting in the crock pot for when they got home.  Some of the famous ones have actual talent.  But the depressing thing is some of the famous ones have zero talent, and the rest of us are left shaking our heads like William Shakespeare catching an episode of the Real Housewives of Miami.  Even more depressing is how many really good, undiscovered bloggers there are.  People are always sending me links from Mom Blogs that "remind me of you!" or that "I think you'll like!" because they wrongly assume I am not petty and can appreciate similarly talented people instead of wanting to destroy them.  Too bad the only thing I can hack is a big chunk of mucus up from my chest during a cold.

So why don't I write about something else, anything else?  I actually know a lot more about other things than I do about motherhood. The problem is I don't want to get fired from my job and I don't want to get divorced from my husband, so that rules out a lot of topics.  And I really have little time for any other field of endeavor.  So that leaves me searching for my place among the ranks of the Mommy Bloggers.

So where do I fit in?  There are of course many types of Mommy Bloggers, and I will break it down for you now.

1) Momprah (that's Mom and Oprah combined, see what I did there?).  This blogger is inspirational and will help you through your darkest days with empathy, compassion, and a good pep talk that generally boils down to--this is really hard, you are beautiful, you are amazing, you are amazingly beautiful, and you need to just keep doing what you're doing, girl.  These ladies have women across America, if not the world, weeping into their computers and reposting things on their Facebook pages with chapeau language like, "YES," "THIS," and "THANK YOU."  When your newborn triplets want to nurse around the clock and projectile vomit it right back up onto your cracked, infected nipples while your husband is sick in the other room with fungal pneumonia and a blizzard rages outside, you need Momprah to show you the deep meaning to be found in all of it and above all to tell you that though you look and feel like roadkill that somehow still manages to appear fat even though it is smashed on the pavement, your soul has never been more shiny and radiant.   She probably will not tell you what you may need to hear, to drop the martyr act and go get some formula, that would be left up to...

2) Profanity-Laced Mom.  This mommy blogger is a brutal realist who always tells it like it is, and in far too much detail for comfort ("My kids just cussed out the flight attendant for refusing to serve them alcohol.  Fortunately, I drank their share and then some before passing out on my seat mate. They had to deplane me with a wheelchair.")  She can send you into fits of laughter one minute and have you looking up the number for Child Protective Services the next.  She probably went into labor while dancing on a table in a crop top and leather pants at a club.  Weeks later, she was back doing the same thing with a baby carrier in tow. Her readers are overgrown teenagers, criminals, and regular moms looking to feel better about letting their kids eat Lucky Charms for dinner.  This blogger is the absolute worst nightmare of...

3) Dr. Mom.  This Mommy Blogger may or not be a real Ph.D., but she might as well be, because she has read every study, book, article, medical journal, and probably even a few dusty dissertations on parenting, early childhood development, pediatrics, education, nutrition, psychology, theology, criminology, or anything that has anything to do with children.  This woman knows her stuff.  If she's a nice person, she will offer her wisdom up in a helpful, non-condescending way ("10 ideas for stimulating your child's brain development during a blizzard") but if she's kind of a witch, it will be a bit more pointed ("How that corn dog you just served your toddler is shriveling her liver into a raisin").  She's a great resource to have for when you earnestly need advice.  But fair warning, reading her blog will either send you into an anxious frenzy of organic farming, compulsive crafting, and feeling-validation exercises or it will cause you to descend into a paralyzed, catatonic state as you are overwhelmed with all the things you need to start and stop doing to ensure your child doesn't turn out to be an obese, hyperactive serial killer with a shriveled liver.  Or a merely average person.  Dr. Mom is an towering intellectual giant next to...

4) Hello Kitty Mom.  I've named this Mommy Blogger after the too-cute, rot-your-teeth-sweet, overly pink Japanese cartoon because this mom, her kids, and her entire life is absolutely nauseating.  Her blog consists of an endless stream of precious, instagram-filtered photos of her 16 amazingly wonderful and identically-dressed children, the adorable cakes she makes for their birthdays ("Just whipped up this sweet 3D animatronic cake for Hawthorne's Frozen party!!!!  I just love how the laces in Anna's iceskates turned out!!! So easy, too!!!"), the darling owl she and her kids carved out of butter ("Butter carvings make dinner time so fun!!! So easy, too!!!"), selfies of her itty bitty former-cheerleader self in maternity fashion ("soooo hard to dress my big belly!!!  So easy, too!!!"),  fun family outings ("We just hiked the Appalachian Trail!!! the baby crawled behind us like a trooper!!! So easy, too!!!), all with chapeau language laced with plenty of rainbow, heart, butterfly, and pony emoticons. Sure, motherhood can be rough, but "soooo worth every minute of life with my precious babies!!!"  Indeed, "mommyhood is the best job ever!!!!"  Hello Kitty Mom risks being bludgeoned to death by...

5) Feminist Mom.  This mom's blog is all about Girl Power, Raising Strong Daughters, and Fighting Gendered Stereotypes.  Her day job is corporate CEO, and while she has no time to bake animatronic cakes, she will have a tasteful, successful birthday party for her daughter, complete with a Gloria Steinem impersonator.  Her blog deals with such topics ranging from "Where to buy a Power Suit for your infant" to the missing Rey doll conspiracy against women to a list of companies to boycott for not offering enough non-pink clothing for girls.  She is really torn about breastfeeding, because on the one hand, it's clearly a male plot and makes it really hard to take over a company when you are pumping 10 minutes out of every hour, but on the other hand, how is her daughter going to take over the world without a sky-high IQ.  It's a conundrum about which she will blog at length.   She is a lot more energetic than...

6) Me.  And a lot of bloggers like me, probably most of them.  I can't claim to be even remotely unique or talented when I take in the full array of the Mommy Bloggers.  We have no real agenda other than just getting through the day and being decent enough parents.  And trying to find humor in it all so that we don't just collapse into a weeping pile of snot in need of rescue by Momprah.  And trying to prevent insanity or brain death or alcoholism in the case of Profanity-Laced Mom.  So we blog.  For something to do.  For therapy.  For ourselves.  If people read it, fine. Some of us will go viral and have a brief moment in the sun.  Some will have an entire career made.  If no one reads it, well, at least we rescued a few brain cells and brushed up our English language skills.  

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