Food stamps and government assistance. It would seem to me that if a person found themselves in a rough financial jam that resulted in the use of government assistance to make one’s financial ends meet, that such a person would choose not to add any additional family members while going through such rough financial times. Right? Well, depending on who you are the answer may be no. Why let a silly detail like lack of money get in the way of bringing more humans in the world. After all, all the children need is love….who cares about silly details like shelter, food, clothes, medical care and all the other minutia that children seem to need.
Turns out that Nadya Suleman, wonder Mama extraordinaire is getting a little help off the good taxpayers in California, a state that from what I hear is in some serious financial straits. It seems Nadya is getting some food stamps and disability payments for a few of her older kids. Call me crazy but if I were the single Mama of 6 kids, several of whom had disabilities severe enough that they warrant disability payments, why the fuck would I have 8 more kids?
Well I am growing convinced that there is a segment of women in our society who see motherhood as the be all and end all, women who in my humble opinion seem to worship at the alter of motherhood. I see this around me enough that its no longer what I consider a coincidence.
Look, I will be honest and say I was never a girl who dreamed on becoming a mommy, I was a reluctant Mama the first time around and over the years while I have grown to love being a mother, the truth remains being a mother is just one part of whom I am. I don’t define myself strictly on the basis that I have given birth, maybe its because my eldest will be a legal adult come his next year but I am reminded that parenting is just one of the many seasons those of us who have kids will have in our lives. Don’t get me wrong, we never stop being parents, I saw this when my own beloved mother was dying yet in the midst of that final season she was still Mama….making what would be the last meal her hands would ever prepare for me the night before going in for brain surgery. Its those things that keep us parenting even when our babies are grown.
Yet some women become so wrapped up in babies and the thought of having them that common sense goes out the door. Just yesterday I ran across a woman who is married to a high school dropout who bags groceries for a living and makes $8.50 an hour. This young family is living with inlaws but the young mother hates her kid being in daycare and wants to quit her own minimal paying job to be a stay at home Mama.
Um….when you live with inlaws and don’t make much cash, its time to toss certain desires to the side until you are in a better place. Look being a stay at home Mama is great, but when a family can afford it. In most case if you are living with family members, guess what? You cannot afford not to work.
Yet once again that mommy desire is so deep that it seems to prevent common sense from taking over. Like I have said earlier, in a perfect world, I would have a house full of babies and probably stay home with them. Yet my reality is I am married to a middle aged guy in a dying career and have my own mountain of student loan debt with one kid starting to get ready for college. None of this makes it a wise time for me to throw out my common sense and follow my passion. Instead I pray that the spousal unit and I live long enough and after we finish raising the youngest we can retire to some lovely locale like Belize.
Motherhood really is great but so is common sense.