Moms Helping Moms

by Marilynn Halas on June 27th, 2013
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You hear a lot about competitiveness between moms.  Nobody likes to admit that their child still isn’t sleeping through the night, isn’t walking or just tanked on an algebra test.  The thing is that those of us engaged in the business of raising a human being have to learn to fearlessly embrace the messy reality of imperfection.  Human beings are, by definition, only human and I think that is something to celebrate.  We get to try and know that screwing up is not only likely, it’s perfect.  Trying and failing and trying again is what makes the human spirit indominible.  Last week, I learned that we humans are not the only ones trying to be good parents and making mistakes along the way.

Imagine this, I was minding my own business, (sort of) putting the finishing touches on my daughter’s birthday cake.  (Still not sure why I started the whole “I’ll bake you a cake in the shape of the number you’re turning” idiocy, but that ship has sailed.)  We were headed out to dinner with friends to celebrate my daughter’s big day when about 10 minutes prior to our on-time departure, the birthday express was derailed.

Anyway, my little boy bursts into the kitchen with tears in his eyes and a tremble in his voice.  “Come quick Mama!  They’re dying!”  In the throes of trying to make a perfect pink heart over the “i” in Birthday, I looked at my son with what must have been a confused face.  He repeated his news flash more slowly and this time, let the tear fall dramatically down his just washed cheek.   I hate to admit it, but since I knew my kids were all accounted for and my husband was beside me, I actually hesitated before I came back to my senses.  “Okay Buddy, what’s going on?”

Two minutes later we were standing over the scene of the accident.  A wild wind knocked two baby robins and a remarkably tough little blue egg down from our maple tree.  The nest was all but shredded in pieces beside them.  By now I knew three things, we were going to be late for our dinner reservation, the cake would have to do without the roses I planned for the edges and I knew precious little about nest renovation and rebuilding.

My son, daughter and I donned our gloves and grabbed a small flower pot.  The nest was not fixable so we used it to line the flower pot before we gently replaced the robins and the egg.  It’s possible I was grumbling about being late while my kids were looking for worms and singing to the babies when my sweet husband met my exasperated gaze.


“You know, she’s doing the best she can.”  Again, I must have looked confused because like his son a few minutes before, he explained again.  “The mother robin, she’s just like any other mom, she’s doing the best she can.  She’s not much of a nest builder, but you helped her out.  Moms help moms.”

Brilliant.  Moms do help moms, from tips for sleeping through the night, (like put a heating pad in the crib to warm it up and TAKE IT OUT BEFORE you put the baby in), to recommending an amazing algebra tutor, moms know how to help.

So, the next time a mom asks you how things are going, let her know.  Trade tips and make a friend because the best thing about moms is that we will stop what we’re doing to help a friend, feathered or otherwise.

Keep your face to sun and watch out for falling nests.


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