Tuesday, June 25, 2013

the online mom

the past four months as a new mom have been, well...great! jane is a dream-child; she sleeps close  to 9-10 hours a night (consistently), and the girl has finally figured out napping, too (she will seriously nap anywhere you stick her, it's heavenly). she rolls like she's getting paid to do it, and loves to stick everything AND anything in her slobbering mouth (the other day i tried to give her a kiss and she suctioned herself right onto my chin...so cute, right?!). jane is a bit of a diva when it comes to breast feeding, though. at about 2 months of age she decided to be a little rebel and refused to breast feed in public (like she was the bashful one!) and for the past month she chooses when she wants to or not (moreso "not" as of late). so the breast pump has become an extra appendage for me and if i didn't feel like a milking cow before, i certainly think i could win a blue ribbon at a country fair now!

all in all though, i'm getting the hang of this "maternal" role i've been endowed with. 

before i had jane, i wondered a lot about what kind of mother i would be. would i know what to do with a baby? would i be overbearing? would i finally become domestic and learn how to use a crockpot? 

(note: i still don't know how to use a crockpot.)

to prepare myself for motherhood, i started following "mommy-blogs" via the internet and instagram. i had heard of such realms of the internet before, but knew little about them seeing as i started blogging when i was finishing school and only really followed fashion blogs and confused twenty-somethings like myself (hence the name of this blog). so, as i started following blogs of other mothers i noticed an acronym popping up wherever i went: 


it took a few months but i finally figured out what it meant: stay. at. home. MOM! now, i'm not dogging on anyone who holds this title, i myself will be a "SAHM" for at least a year, but these 4 letters led me into a world i had no idea existed...and the only way i can think of describing it is by giving it a worthy title:

"the online mom." 

most of us are mothers on the internet yes, but it takes a special person to truly be an "online mom" (trust me, there is a difference). the online mom can be found anywhere, but usually as authors behind pun-intended blog-titles about motherhood/kids/etc., or on facebook buy 'n sell pages. 

surprisingly, the online mom doesn't know that there are unwritten rules of online ettiquecy. she forgets that posting 15 photos in a row on her instagram will ultimately result in a lot more clogged feeds and a few less followers. the online mom will post her frustration on the wall of a public group page instead of "pming (private messaging)" other members, resulting in comments that sometimes rival any daytime soap opera in drama. 

oh, and the online mom loves drama. she LOVES it!

she will be the first to point out any wrong-doing, and the last to admit that it's petty. i call this the "snowball effect". this occurs when one mom has posted something that may be slightly offensive, and the online mom retaliates with a comment that is also somewhat offensive (which usually ends with: "but i'm not here to judge or anything" or "but that's just my opinion" so it doesn't come off "rude"). this then results in more online moms jumping on the "drama express" until we have touched on every topic from politics to religion and have now created a full-fledged frosty the snowman.

i will admit, i fall prey to the "online mom" persona. i love posting pictures of my stinkin' adorable baby girl, and i will also write on my blog about "said" stinkin' adorable baby girl. i may have a "slight" addiction to online shopping, and anyone who knows me knows that i need a 12 step program to get my butt away from pinterest. 

but i'm very aware of all this; the online mom isn't.

it's gotten to the point where my online life is starting to dictate my real life, too. and i don't want to be that kind of mother to jane. 

so, how can i prevent myself from becoming an online mom? 

stop hiding behind a screen. 
(says the girl typing from her lap top.)

instead of going on a walk because "i can blog or instagram" about it, 
just go on a damn walk! 

instead of cleaning my house really quick so it looks good for a photo, 
just learn how to be tidy...always. 

instead of caring so much about the latest "baby fashion" out there, 
just let the poor girl wear a diaper. 

...and instead of posting a million photos of my child, 
just appreciate the little moments you have with her. 

(i can't guarantee i won't post a million photos of jane...she's a stinkin' adorable baby girl, remember?) 

we live in a world where "over-sharing" is the name of the game, so how can we NOT get caught up in all of it? 

i've started to only go on my laptop/phone while jane is napping (dropping my phone on her head one too many times while breast feeding may have played a huge factor in this...whoops). i find if i'm more engaged in what jane is doing, she's less fussy (and doesn't have as many goosebumps on her head). 

this may not seem like a huge change, but hey, it's a start. my house is cleaner, i make better meals, and i sew a lot more when i'm not online.

how about you? 

(warning...stinkin' adorable baby girl ahead!)


Mal and Cody said...

I agree with you! I have tried really hard this past year to focus on being active with Brady, go out lots and to keep the tv and phone off as much as possible. I notice a huge difference when we stay inside watching tv all day or i play too many games of candy crush compared to when we get out and I really focus my attention on him. Life is too busy to spend it on the Internet, although my kid never naps so that might make a difference. (All said while I am currently being this online mom you talk about by commenting haha)

Shannon said...

I'm an over sharer by nature, but I never let my online persona show up when I"m with my daughter. She mostly shows up during down times at work and after Tay's in bed for the night.

Diana said...

Do you think I'm an online mom? I'm worried now. There are the occasional times when I fall victim the the drama mamas but I think I learned my lesson with the buy and sell fiasco. I hope Logan know that I would much rather watch him destroy the house than clean it and hold him close instead of blog (hence the abandoned blog) It's the little moments here and there while he is growing and learning that I love the most and heaven forbid I miss it because I'm being dramatic about something online!

Megan Hollenback said...

well i really love this. really got me thinking. i totally agree and often worry about how much time i spend behind a screen. it's hard, doing what i do, but i like to think all things in moderation. i think this is something we are all guilty of thats for sure. thanks for the post!

Katie K said...

Boom! Finally found the link to your blog and read this one. Way to go. What a great social commentary of the over sharing world we live in.