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As mothers, we’re all in a club together, a club where we peel oranges, wipe noses, and ask our children where their shoes are at least seven times a day. If we’re lucky, we also drink wine out of old Big Gulp containers (our version of sippy-cups).
But sometimes this club – this giant club filled with every mother everywhere – can seem a little large. Sometimes, we need to break out into sects.
Of course we can do this easily – we can join PTAs, we can start book clubs, we can arrange a girl’s night every so often.
Or we can start our own clubs. Such as:
Mothers Who Hate Caillou: If you don’t know who Caillou is, consider yourself lucky. Very lucky. In short, Caillou is a cartoon featuring a little boy who whines. That’s basically it. If you think the Map from Dora is Nickelodeon’s most annoying feature, wait till Caillou walks into your life. He’s a complainer, a tattle-tale, and an all-around little bitch.
While the members of MWHC never condone violence, Caillou has got to go. All the animators need to do is commit cartoon homicide with their erasers – it’s that simple. Nary a tear will fall, unless that tear is one of joy.
Mothers Still For Vaccinations: I know the whole vaccination thing is controversial, with those for vaccinations facing off against anti-vaxxers like a scene from West Side Story. I’d never tell another mother what to do with her child, as I don’t expect others to tell me. In that way, I think arguing about vaccines can be futile – it’s like arguing about politics: people believe what they believe and aren’t likely to change their minds.
But nothing anyone says – no celebrity, no movement, no horror story – will stop me from vaccinating for two reasons. First of all, we all know that some kids can’t be vaccinated for serious medical reasons and there’s no way my daughter is going to be Typhoid Mary to a child fighting cancer or a three-weeks-old baby. It’s just not happening. Second of all, I believe in stacking the odds.
I was born into poor health; I’ve been privy to the “risks of this” conversations and the “this could happen” comments for as long as I can remember. And this is what I’ve learned: if you’re looking for guarantees, healthcare isn’t where you’ll find them. Medicine has no absolutes: I survived emergency heart surgery at eight-days-old and my grandmother died of appendicitis – for better and for worse, the statistics can be wrong. So, I do what I believe is best: I play the odds. And science has repeatedly said the odds favor those who immunize.
Mothers Against Prolonged Periods: When I was growing up, my sisters and I would make a paper chain every December 1st. Composed of twenty-five links, each day we’d tear off a link until there were no more and it was Christmas. The day I felt my first menstrual cramp, I considered making a similar chain: 14,000 paper links counting down the days till menopause.
Now, I get that periods are important so that we can reproduce (though I actually adopted and could have done without them entirely). But do we really need to menstruate for forty years? No one is having kids over a four decade span. MAPP would work to get the menstruation years condensed to ten or so. How would we do this? I guess we’d talk to Tampax and see if they could pull some strings.
Mothers Protecting Privacy: Before my daughter came along, my dogs used to follow me to the bathroom. They’d anxiously wait outside the door, fearful that I was going to disappear into the toilet like that really gross scene from Trainspotting. I thought I had no privacy then, but now that I have a child, it’s only gotten worse.
Unlike my dogs, my daughter can knock, scream, turn the doorknob, and ask me repeatedly, “Mommy, what are you doing?” And, when I’m finished, she conducts an exit interview: at least my Maltese has never asked for details.
As mothers (and, fathers, really) privacy is something we bid adieu. But I have to admit that I want it back. Which is why I’m for this club: I’m down with MPP.
Mothers for Free Hands: Daughter, I love you. You’re cute and fun and all that other crap. But I don’t want to hold your stuff. The string cheese wrapper you’ve ripped off your snack? Throw it in the trash. The ice cream cone you’re eating? Finish it. The toy you’re sort of playing with? Put it somewhere else. The giant booger you’ve dug out of your left nostril? For me? You shouldn’t have.
I know you’re too young to carry a purse, but you’re going to have to find some other place for all of your junk. I only have two hands…….and I need them for texting.