Making Sisters & Tearing Down Walls — #EndMommyWars
- September 18, 2015
- by Melissa Lawrence
I’m a Sisterhood of Motherhood Partner and am a sponsored blog partner, but all opinions are my own. Please see below for additional information.
Welcome back to my Reflections Thursdays series in which I am talking about happiness, wellness, health, and being your best self!
Hello everyone. Melissa here back from an inspiring two days in my home town of NYC. The past two weeks have been such a whirlwind with my five kids starting school and activities that I’ve barely managed to get dressed. Well, that all came to an end on Tuesday night, when I stepped into the shower, pulled the blow dryer out of the bathroom vanity drawer, and stepped out to dinner downtown with this group of truly inspiring mommy bloggers. I’ve admired so many of these gals from afar since I began CloudMom that it was amazing to meet them in person …
We all have created different types of blogs and with distinct messages as an expression of our passions and personalities. But within minutes, we started chatting and laughing about our common experiences as moms.
One blogger shared her story of having struggled with infant babies with a milk allergy that required her to stop breastfeeding. Another, her battle with postpartum depression and alcoholism. Although we had just met, we were opening up and becoming fast friends.
Opening up, sharing and not feeling judged feels so good. It feels right. It feels like the way we moms should treat each other. What a remarkable evening this became for me.
The next morning we boarded a bus together headed for The Today show set for a tour and breakfast in honor of the Sisterhood of Motherhood campaign sponsored by Similac, of which I’ve been honored to be a part. The campaigns motto is to end the mommy wars.
Some folks have asked on my Facebook page: what are the mommy wars? To me, the mommy wars rear their ugly head when a mother judges another mother for doing things differently. The mommy wars damage us as a community of moms. They prevent us from seeking our own truth as we raise our kids. They destroy what would otherwise have been happy moments (and aren’t there already too few of those?). Since I believe so strongly in the power of kindness and support, I’ve been thrilled to be a part of spreading this message.
Arriving at Rockefeller Center, we took a few minutes to snap some pictures. Here’s Julie from Sober Mommies and Mommitment! Julie has overcome alcoholism and post-partum and could be a “poster woman” for what a smart mama can be when she feels empowered to share her story with the goal of helping others and fostering a community. Julie’s also wicked funny and kept us chuckling throughout the day.
It’s not every day that you spot the Today Show team!
When in doubt, take a selfie to make sure that extraordinary times are sealed into digital memory.
Today show correspondent Dylan Dryer to time to pose with our ecstatic group.
We then made our way upstairs to a breakfast sponsored by The Sisterhood of Motherhood in tandem with Today’s Parenting Team. Even though my sandals weren’t really “seasonally appropriate”, I could safely rely on the fact that this crowd wasn’t judging. That little detail felt good too.
With the intros and tour behind us, we settled down into some comfy seats at The Rainbow Room to soak up a panel event with Today’s Sheinelle Jones, Jenna Wolfe, and Hillary and Haylie Duff. Here’s one quote from Jenna Wolfe that resonated with me:
“We are all a work in progress! No one has it figured out, no one has all the right answers, no one ever has and no one ever will. So if you can go to sleep at night knowing you did the best you can, you loved your kid with everything you’ve got in your heart, regardless of what every other human says, writes or thinks about you, then guess what? You’re doing it right. And who cares what anyone else thinks?”
Being at The Today Show was a first, hearing Hilary Duff and and Haylie, moms and sisters, speak about their resolve to end mom judgment , but the biggest take home was a feeling of having bonded with some supportive and sweet new mom friends. Here’s yours truly with Anna from My Life with Kids, Ilana from Mommy Shorts, and Caroline from Chocolate & Carrots.
Imagine if we lived in a world where we felt comfortable enough to make mistakes without fearing the criticism of others, where we felt embraced for what we try to be, rather than scorned for our imperfections, where we felt pride whether our families look put together 100% or 3% of the time. I want to live in such a world! Don’t you?
These uplifting, heart-warming two days has crystallized my resolve to be a better person of a mom, to bypass criticism and embrace supportiveness. Rembering Haylie Duff say the following:
“I’m going to leave here today taking responsibility for what I put out into the world, what come out of my mouth, and the way that I judge people.”
I’m listing my own set of resolutions. Here goes:
- When in doubt, say something supportive
- Remind yourself that you have no idea what being in another mom’s life feels like.
- Be kinder to yourself. Then, you will be kinder to others.
- Trust your own choices, and don’t quiver if others don’t like what you say or do.
- Let your love for you child guide your decision making, not the eye of others.
- Follow your instinct.
- Surround yourself with parent friends who make you feel good, not those who could lead you to put yourself into doubt.
- Accept that each and every one of us is a work in progress.
Kindness. Support. Respect. Acceptance. Friendship. Sisterhood. Love.
Join me in resolving to #endmommywars!
With love and gratitude,
Similac partnered with bloggers such as me for its Sisterhood of Motherhood Program. As part of this program, I received compensation for my time. Similac believes that consumers and bloggers are free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. Similac’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, Federal Trade Commission (FTC) guidelines and social media engagement recommendations.