I Call It “Mom Shaming”

Artwork by Clara

In today’s society, shaming one another over the most ridiculous or trivial reasons has become the new norm. Every social media platform is ripe with it, the national news outlets can take their pick of any number of shaming incidents that have escalated to viral proportions, but never, did I expect to be catching slack from my five-year-old. I call it “Mom Shaming”.

If you are a parent, then you know about the massive amounts of artwork, trinkets, and crafts a child can produce. Every day there are pages coming home from school, artwork loving made for me to treasure or fun things like a beautiful dandelion bouquet. So many treasures, but it’s just impossible to keep every…single…. thing! Try telling that to a five-year-old.

I should explain that I struggle with clutter at my house. My kitchen usually falls victim to clutter attacks. The counter, the table; no flat surface is safe. So, when my kids bring home paper from school, I try to manage it ASAP, so it doesn’t linger too long. I look through it, keeping the important information, and sort the rest. 95% will find a new home in the recycle bin. Just so you don’t think I’m a cold, heartless Mom, I take note of the very cute artwork, and will scan ‘said picture’ and upload to keep as an electronic file. At some point, the idea is to make a memory photo book of creations, but for the time being, we just have a huge database of artwork. Problem is, the kids just see the discard action, not the amazingly awesome Pinterest ideas floating around in my head. More than once Clara has called me out, digging something out of the recycle bin in one of her random checks for her works. The utter look of disappointment is the worst when I get busted. That just means I had to get more creative in my recycling, like hiding things under other “non-school” things or holding them aside and discreetly getting them into the recycle before it heads out. How did it come to this??? Sneaking around to recycle!!

I know this phase of childhood passes all too quickly, so I really do try to make a special mention to acknowledge it. I even share the love! Sometimes we turn artwork into cards, make it into gift wrap, we have laminated placemats, framed pictures on the wall, but sadly some must go! Those perfect rocks they found for me (that rolled around in the floorboards of my car for months), I placed those as a reminder at work. When I park, I see them and smile as I think about my girls and how important those rocks were. To everyone else, they are just rocks on a larger rock, but to me I know they were at one time ‘the perfect rock’ that we just had to keep.

What do you do with your kids’ artwork? If you have a great protocol in place, I’d love to hear about it. Email me at cathysummers@ccb-media.com with your suggestions. Maybe you can help me to put this Mom Shaming to bed!

About Cathy Summers

Cathy Summers is the Midday Host on 99.9 The Q and Afternoon Host on Cape Country 104.


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