All around the globe, moms find common ground

BlogHer Original Post

Most of the blogs I read are American, and I've found myself actively seeking out ones that are not, because I'd started feeling sort of lazy and ethnocentric. There's a whole world out there! And the internet brings it right to my desk! Time to branch out a little!

While it is likely true that there are plenty of commonalities in the human experience, across cultures, it is undeniably true that the commonalities across the parenting experience transcend location and culture in a way that little else does. I knew that I was feeling kinship with fellow moms across the country, so it should've come as no surprise that I feel that same kinship with some women across the world... and no, it's not all diapers and school supplies.

Those who read infertility blogs are already well-acquainted with Tertia of So Close. Once about her struggle to achieve parenthood, So Close now follows Tertia's twins and other facets of her life in South Africa.

Just recently, Tertia regaled us with the ubiquitous OMG the kids almost found the vibrator story, which is a staple of every parent's "kids do the darndest things" arsenal.

Snippets of Life is Karen Cheng's blog, written largely about her life with her husband and two boys in Perth, Australia. (The illustration at the top of this post is a dinosaur painted by Karen's son, Callum.)

In her August 3rd post, Karen writes:

As much as I love being a parent, sometimes people forget I am a NORMAL PERSON! I do have a life. I do have a personality outside my family. And I DO like talking about things that are not children related.

It's always been a huge conversation stopper at parties and functions, when someone asks me "What do you do?". I used to say proudly, "I'm a stay at home mother..." And find myself repeating the whole "No, I don't work. Yes, I love hanging out with my kids. No, I'm not going back to work soon. Blah blah blah."

Now I like to joke and say I'm a "Lady of leisure - and I work all day at spending my husband's money. It's actually harder than it sounds, but I completely recommend it."

I laughed out loud when I read that. But the truth is that she had me from her About Me section with this choice little bit:

I'm a Christian. I reckon that God is cool, loving, down-to-earth and has an awesome sense of humour. But his PR people need to lift their game.

Irene Nam chronicles her life in Paris with her twin boys over at Momster. Although I love the descriptions of her boys' antics, I love even more that Irene is willing to share beyond her experiences as a mom, like when she embraced her nerdy side:

yes, I am an almost thirty, wife and mother of two and I went to the free concert of the top 6 finalists of France's own version of American Idol with my friend Katia. yes, the average age of the audience was 11. after a few awkward attempts I did manage to quiet the responsible mother outraged at 13-year-olds wearing thong underwear and unashamedly screamed my lungs out. I sang. I even danced. and surprisingly, I did not invite curious stares. I think the last concert I felt so deliriously enthusiastic about was New Kids On the Block's. and I was 12.

For a feast for the eyes (and ideas, for those who scrapbook as well), look no further than Celebrate the Everyday. A family of ex-pats living in the Caymans, this mom shares her thoughts as well as her gorgeous scrapbook layouts. I was struck, recently, by how easy it is to forget the early days with our kids (and perhaps I wished, once again, that I was a "crafty type" and had scrapbooked those precious years), when reading this post:

I know they are suppose to be the 'terrible two's' but I can't help but love this age as much as I find it an incredible challenge. Now that Elle can talk we are getting a glimpse of what is actually going on inside her mind and it's so fun to hear her thoughts and feelings on different subjects. We are starting to see so much more of her spunky personality blossom as well as the characteristics that define who she is. I love it.

Kristin writes about her life with baby Nolan at Debaucherous and Dishevelled, and I may have forgotten she lives in Canada save for her recent discussion of returning to work. (They may have milk in bags, but they also have year-long maternity leave.) Her recent post about preparing to return to work both made me laugh:

Today we did the "trial back-to-work run" which began with a panicky awakening at 7:08 AM (which, wtf? Nolan has never ever woken up after 6 am prior to this morning) and ended with us all grimly accepting our miserable fate as we sailed to the bowels of the earth in a cockroach-lined handbasket.

... and made me remember, painfully, those separations from my own kids:

I don't know. It's really the whole thought of leaving him; he's been like an appendage for the last year. He is my little finger, the tip of my nose, the ventricle of my heart.

If you're not already reading these moms, check them out. We all have more in common than you might think.


BlogHer Contributing Editor Mir also blogs at Woulda Coulda Shoulda and Want Not.


In order to comment on, you'll need to be logged in. You'll be given the option to log in or create an account when you publish your comment. If you do not log in or create an account, your comment will not be displayed.