Don’t remember the tune? “She’s a Bad Mama Jama” was written by Leon Haywood and became a major R&B hit, earning Carl Carlton a Grammy Award nomination for Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male in 1982.
While I know it’s not the spirit of the song, the title makes me ponder “Good Mom-Bad Mom” on this, my favorite day of the year, Mother’s Day. Thank you Hallmark. Thank you for the commercialization of a day that should be commercialized, memorialized and honored by all—because we all had a mother. And, thank you Mr. Haywood and Carlton for giving me a way to “spin” the feeling of always wanting to do more in the way of motherhood, with a little levity!
Not all us love our mothers. Not all of us were raised by our mothers. Not all of us still have mothers. Not all of us are “good” mothers. Alas, we all have or had one.
If you are a mom, you’ll know what I mean when I write to you of the perfectionist trap of never feeling like a good enough mom–“I shouldn’t raise my voice”, “I should be a better encourager”, blah blah blah, fill in your own blanks.
Even if you’re not a mom, (man, woman or child) you are a “parent”–a steward, a fiduciary, a foster-er of some relationship that is meaningful in your life. This makes you a mom (sorry guys, just insert “dad”). There is no place for perfectionism here. Why? Ah, there’s
no manual. Whether you have one child or six, two dogs or four, one surrogate child or three, there’s no manual. Even a manual can’t offer perfect.
Seek the imperfection of today. Aim for a greater version of imperfect, tomorrow, or next year on Mother’s Day. My favorite moms have been arrested, braved sobriety, saved broken marriages, survived broken marriages, seen husbands go to prison, scaled corporate ladders with female-proof glass ceilings, recovered from great losses–loss of money, family members, and businesses, survived and not survived cancer; all while being moms. Our jobs are many. The worst of which we moms excel at is the job of loving ourselves just as we are. Imperfect Mommies. Our hats are many. Choose the hat of imperfection today. An imperfectly PERFECT Mother’s Day; a deliciously imperfect Mom. Its hard work, being imperfect, ladies. So, cut it out!
While bull markets will come and go, so too will the happiest days of motherhood, friend-hood, dog-ownerhood, fatherhood, childhood or otherwise. See the future of what perfection looks like and seek today just a piece of it, today. Tomorrow, lets do it all over again! For there’s no such thing as a “bad mama jama” today—today, we’re just good mam-a jam-a’s doing our best.
Signing off with visions of Dow 30,000, a flawless, flourless chocolate souffle–that melts fat, wrinkles and gray hair–made by size 6 me from the top of Denali with 40 degree temps, clear skies and rainbows. I’m warm as can be on the highest peak of North America with my mother and my girls singing Amazing Grace back at basecamp keeping my apple cider warm with a Pappy, neat, nearby accompanied with a Tuna Maki roll. Dream on Moms, dream on!