When I became pregnant, I made the conscious decision to a full-time stay-at-home mother. Eight years later, I have come to the conclusion that what I thought was a personal decision is more than that. It is political. It has been made abundantly clear to me that such a decision is supposed to be only the purview of married women whose husbands work at jobs where they earn a wage that makes the lack of two incomes a non-issue.  It is not a decision that society permits low income, not-completely college-educated women-such as myself. My status as a mother is, apparently, qualified by the pejorative “single” as if the way I mother my son is somehow qualitatively different than the way I would mother him if  his father and I hadn’t divorced before he was conceived…and also by the fact that I turned down his father’s remarriage request after our son was conceived.

The links below provided today discuss this “situation” in terms that define the saying “the personal is political”.

http://socialistworker.org/2012/07/23/single-mother-myth:

As long as our society is organized around the existence of the nuclear family, no matter how mythical that ideal has become, those who live outside it will be punished. In our society, the entire cost of raising the next generation of workers is pushed onto the private family. This represents a massive savings for those who run this society. Women’s unpaid labor in the home–in the U.S. alone–represents more than $1.4 trillion each year, according to the estimate of United Nations researchers in 1995.

http://bit.ly/MA7YMC:

Rather than opining on whether [Marissa] Mayer will be a good mommy, what we really ought to be talking about is why the workplace remains so incompatible with motherhood in the first place – and why we assume that fixing that incompatibility is women’s work.

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2012/07/why-women-still-can-8217-t-have-it-all/9020/6/?single_page=true

EIGHTEEN MONTHS INTO my job as the first woman director of policy planning at the State Department, a foreign-policy dream job that traces its origins back to George Kennan, I found myself in New York, at the United Nations’ annual assemblage of every foreign minister and head of state in the world. On a Wednesday evening, President and Mrs. Obama hosted a glamorous reception at the American Museum of Natural History. I sipped champagne, greeted foreign dignitaries, and mingled. But I could not stop thinking about my 14-year-old son, who had started eighth grade three weeks earlier and was already resuming what had become his pattern of skipping homework, disrupting classes, failing math, and tuning out any adult who tried to reach him. Over the summer, we had barely spoken to each other—or, more accurately, he had barely spoken to me. And the previous spring I had received several urgent phone calls—invariably on the day of an important meeting—that required me to take the first train from Washington, D.C., where I worked, back to Princeton, New Jersey, where he lived. My husband, who has always done everything possible to support my career, took care of him and his 12-year-old brother during the week; outside of those midweek emergencies, I came home only on weekends.

It is undoubtedly a struggle for me to post consistently (read weekly or even bi-weekly). I get my head stuck in the latest book I’m reading or the process of writing my fourth book or motherhood or just play internet-tiredness. I know it. I also know it competes with my growing desire to build what I am now at peace with referring to as “my brand”. Therefore, instead of castigating myself I have decided to launch a new component to the Diary of a Mad Reader. Namely, instead of simply posting quotes from books that resonate with me, I will be incorporating links to interesting blogs I come across. This is the first “issue” of that component.

Today’s theme: Enter the Hood – Parent and Mother

http://anjuellefloyd.com/2012/of-vipassana-abandoned-dreams-and-the-map-of-true-places/

I am dedicated to taking care of our daughters first such that when all three reach adulthood I can focus the majority of my attention on writing, and without regret of what I did not provide our children.

http://focsimama.wordpress.com/2012/03/27/the-terrific-twos/

We have decided instead of saying, “Terrible Two’s” they are now to be called “Terrific Two’s”!

http://radiantramblings.wordpress.com/2012/07/19/what-the-heck/

Can you identify THIS:

 

www.ashafullife.blogspot.com/2011/06/i-aint-skeered.html

This agnostic mom goes on a lot of adventures and I manage to get myself into some awkward spots.  The latest adventure involves me agreeing to be a co-leader to my daughter’s Brownie Girl Scout troop.
Yeah, I’ll pause so you can soak that in and say a prayer, light a candle or do whatever it is that you people do when you want to save a child’s soul.
Over the weekend, I was able to go on an excursion to Oklahoma City for an overnight training session.  I knew ahead of time I would be staying at the Catholic Pastoral Center.  I joked with my friend, Julia that I’d probably be struck by lightning or something.