I have an idea for a reality show. There is a lot of reality involved. And while I use the word "mother" a lot here, it really applies
to whichever parent is home most of the time:
Parenting sometimes feels like a contact sport. No longer simply an inevitable life stage for many people, motherhood, in particular, is often driven by anxiety, perfectionism and competitiveness. Who will get the Gold?
Consider this typical to-do list:
1) spend quality time, separately, with each child, spouse, family member and friend (or, get home from work in time to spend quality time with each child and husband, as well as family members and friends.)
2) maintain family social calendar as well as book, schedule and show up for kids’ classes, sports, music lessons, ballet. And/or schedule nanny to do same. Attend school functions and arrange playdates. Serve on local committees. Help with homework.
3) Make six figures.
4) keep the household clean, organized, stocked with food and clean
clothes, and under budget.
5) look and feel refreshed, fit and fashionable with little sleep. Be
healthy. Work out. Buy correct cosmetics, health products. Maintain several wardrobes, if working.
6) shop for (or be home in time to shop for) organic, preservative-free
foods with no saturated fats and cook a nutritious meal every night that
everyone will eat. Pack home-made school lunches while preparing breakfast.
7) Keep track of medical and dental visits. Make kids brush teeth twice daily with natural toothpaste.
8) Organize and administer babysitters, domestic help if lucky enough to have it, dry cleaning, lawn maintenance (if can afford it), automobile service and deliveries. Pay bills, do household budget, deal with customer service and find best credit card rates, insurance policies and home equity loans.
7) Maintain career in field of choice. Get to work on time. Get your
projects done on time, get them done on budget, and make sure they’re really good.
8) Be happy
The race is on. We all try to do it all. Do any of us succeed?
Here is how we find out: On camera! It’s fly-on-the-wall journalism meets Nanny 911. Three moms on the verge of a nervous breakdown…and a team of specialists ready to roll up their sleeves and help.
The specialists (a home organizer, life coach, personal trainer, a spiritual
guru, a shrink and a personal chef) have their own ideas. Then the audience will have a chance to weigh in, voting on who’s carrying the heaviest motherload. The "winner" (though she might describe herself as the "loser") gets to show her true colors as she chooses between an all-expense-paid trip to a spa…ALONE! … a romantic getaway (with her husband??) or … a 4-star cruise with 5 of the most stressed-out mothers she knows.