According to a conversation I, um, unintentionally overheard, between some college students on the bus to the library with Katie and Ellie the other day, Motherhood is a competition. And I thought, "*snort* *eye roll* Whatever, dudes."
Then I had this conversation with Ellie:
Ellie: (skipping through the house, my Mother's Day card with the monkey's on it cradled in her small arms) Mommy! Mommy! Will you read your card to me again?
Me: (my heart warming, as I gently take the card from her breakfast of homemade pumpkin bread stickied fingers) Sure, I can do that. (opening card, reading, as Ellie's smile beams up at me) "1. You're LOTS of fun! 2. You take GREAT care of me. 3. You make my FAVORITE foods. 4. You teach me IMPORTANT stuff. 5. Your hugs are the BEST! There you go-FIVE reasons why you're the BEST MOTHER EVER! HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY! Love, Katie and Ellie".
Ellie: (Giggling, with the joy of unconditional love. Which sounds like butterfly wings, by the way.) I like that card!
Me: You do? Why?
Ellie: (Giggling. Even more. Those butterflies are beginning to sound ominous.) Yeah. It's funny! Because I really like Daddy best!
Me: (Defeatedly, to Ellie's back, as she skips out of the room, mother's day card forgotten, intent on drawing "Daddy the best picture ever".) Don't we all, kid. Don't we all.
And that's when I realized that the bus full of undergrads debating the qualities of what motherhood should epitomize were right. Motherhood is totally a competition.
And I'm losing.
To a man.