It’s National Poetry Month so I thought I’d drop a sweet poem in your internet ear. Also, I’m a #TalkEarly Ambassador and all rhyme and prose are purely my own.
I used to think on what mamis need
and the thoughts were funny and sweet
I’d see the memes on the book o’ faces
and didn’t think I was missing a beat.
But after a while I noticed a trend
which was worrisome, and lacked in fun
that Mamis were portrayed with lots of wine
So I thought I’d end those memes’ run.
The thing I love when I engage with an organization is learning. I will be honest, I thought I’d learn a lot about stats and facts and figures as a #TalkEarly ambassador but I never thought it would change the way I see funny memes.
In October, we all met and had great conversations. One of them was around the idea of all the “moms drink” memes. I’ve shared a few and I know you have too.
It got me wondering about what having those constant messages strewn about would do to our perception of ourselves and others. I’ll be the first to say that I’ve been tagged on images that had a wine purse, reasons for drinking, “mama needs wine” messaging, etc. And while it used to be funny and while they used to have me clapping in approval, the conversations recently have made me wonder: what’s behind the drinking? Behind the perception?
Fun fact: I have a degree in psychology. This hasn’t meant that I’ve practiced the fine art of counseling but rather, I am constantly trying to find a reason for behavior and thinking a bit deeper than what meets the eye.
So what, Sili? I can’t have wine? I can’t relax and unwind with a glass of malbec?
Yes, you sure can. And I am not saying that’s wrong (call me when you open that malbec, will you?). But it got me thinking.
You see, my dad is an alcoholic. He quite literally uses alcohol as a coping mechanism. He holds things in, drinks and then vomits his feelings in the direction of the nearest person that he thinks wronged him in some way without processing anything between the time he got mad, the time he sat on his feelings and the time he decided to speak, thanks to the power of alcohol.
I don’t want to use alcohol to cope with hard days. So many of the memes and GIF’s shared in that vein makes me wonder if people legitimately think that I (we, us, mamas, daddies, aunties, uncles, etc) run to the bottle after every hard day. Let the record show if I did, I’d be right next to my dad, drinking daily and throughout the day.
A while ago, I was chatting with friends and we realized we talked about drinking exponentially more than we actually drink. But, seeing all the images shared on social, you wouldn’t get that feeling. We have these deep conversations offline and in private chats about how we are truly coping: therapy, yoga, running, etc. but that is rarely portrayed outside of our circles.
I want us to share this with others. And also, I wanted us to remember that we have little eyes watching and little ears listening. I don’t want the Frog Princess thinking Mami Juice was the solution to my problems. Because we know it’s not!
It’s why this campaign is so important to me. I want us to come out of those deep healthy conversations we are having in person and in messenger (or at great summits) and let the world know that we aren’t going to normalize drinking as a coping mechanism.
My friends and I put this little thing together. Let the record show that I recorded this while recovering and didn’t realize my head and hand movements shake the damn car! Lesson learned.
We talk about a lot more than Mami needing wine but, you get the drift. While Mami might want a glass of wine, as Jill points out, it’s important for us to remember what we actually need. Mami needs good coping skills, 5 minutes to pee in peace, someone to put a new roll of toilet paper in the holder. You get the drift.
What other catch phrases can you think of that model good coping skills? Here’s one I shared yesterday (because FACTS):