Are You a Happy Mom?

I recently came across an article on parenting that ran back in July.  Sorry I am so late to the conversation, I was probably wiping a nose or a butt.  Anyway, I saw this segment on the Today Show called “I love My Kids, I Hate My Life” and then read the article it’s based on from The New York Times Magazine called All Joy and No Fun about why parents dislike parenting.

The basic premise is that people have kids believing they will make you happier, but studies show that’s not the case.

Here’s my take on it:  First, I think it is near impossible to effectively measure happiness. That said, I think whether or not you are happier for having kids depends on your mood when you are asked and where you are in the parenting process.

If you have a newborn and haven’t showered lately, your dealing with the fact that your body is totally wrecked and you are on the hormone roller coaster of your life…perhaps, though you love your baby, you hate your life. Or, maybe your toddler has entered a difficult phase and it’s been a long time since you have had a break (or a glass or wine).

But I think those times are balanced with periods that are fun and joyful. That said, I know if I was surveyed on my happiness level as a mom it would vary from moment to moment.

Parenting has its moments, good and bad, but would I change anything? Nah. Am I happy? Yes.  Maybe I can write that today because no one has vomited on my lately and I got to sleep all night last night. (D’oh! Perhaps I shouldn’t be throwing down any gauntlets to the vomit and sleep Gods!)

Do my kids complete me? No, but I’m happy to have two healthy kids who make me laugh. A lot.  Is my life perfect? Nope, but I prefer to think of  my glass of juice as half full. Okay, so it’s half full because the other half spilled.  But that’s why they make paper towels.

How are you feeling today? Is your glass of juice half empty or half full?

0 Responses to Are You a Happy Mom?

  1. Becky September 23, 2010 at 9:14 pm #

    I stumbled across that same article a few weeks ago in the airport on a business trip. Saw the magazine cover in the news stands and bought it instantly. And I actually felt guilty for even having it in my posession — like I should have covered it in brown papaer wrapping or something to cover up the headline — but it totally spoke to me. I mean, there are days when I really feel that way…. days when someone will say “Enjoy this time; these are the best days of your life,” and I just want to respond, “Seriously?? THESE are the BEST days of my life? What the hell have I signed up for!?!” But then my kids — two adorable little girls just turning three and one — do something cute and awesome and I absolutely melt, and I try to hang on to the moment as long as I can. Because even those these times are crazy, they are relatively uncomplicated, and I am so freakin’ lucky to have a happy, healthy family that is together and loves each other. And I try to turn my mental frown upside down and think that, yeah, the days are long but the years are short, and these really are the best times.

    Love you, H.

  2. Jennifer September 24, 2010 at 11:35 am #

    Love it!
    I feel that you help create your own happiness even when there are those very stressful and not so fun moments. Over all I am happy being a mom.
    Sure, some days I feel like a failure and some I am goddess of all things mommy. So yes I agree with you, the day, the situation or the time can change your base level of “happiness”. But if you have more laughs, content sighs and hugs than meltdowns and throw up than call it happy!

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