Have you ever had an idea that's festered and bubbled inside you for so long that it creeps into your thoughts during the day and wakes you up at night? Something you're curious or passionate about but that you've never carved out the time to really explore? I have. And now I'm doing something about it.
I listen to women wherever I go. Waiting in line at the grocery store check-out. Sitting in the stands at my sons' soccer games or by the pool where I chat with others mothers during swim meets. Even in my own home as friends and I do whatever we can to carpool or help each other get our kids from here to there on time. I've come to a conclusion. Being a mom today is seriously tough work, and you don't need five sons to find it so. So why is it that so few of us women with school-aged children, many of whom are juggling the double-duty of paid jobs, are talking honestly about how we REALLY FEEL about being moms in 2017? There's no question being a mother today is different than it was when we were growing up. Life has gotten faster and, in my opinion, more complicated.
So I came up with an idea. How could I design a study that would encourage other women - mothers just like I am - to honestly about openly share their views about life? And what questions would I ask of them? I looked into partnering with a local university to make my study official. Pitt. CMU. Duquesne. Carlow. Chatham. None of their sociology departments seemed to have the fit I was looking for. But Seton Hill University DID. I drove out to Greensburg up a long, tree-lined driveway to a stately red brick building and met sociology professor Dr. James Paharik. THIS was what I needed.
With Dr. Paharik and two of his super smart sociology students, Maddie and Alexis, I was - in a matter of months - able to hone the many things I wanted to ask fellow moms into a survey of 58 questions. It's called Real Moms: What Being a Mother Today is Really Like. And how's this for a lofty goal? I'd like to have 1,000 women participate. ONE THOUSAND. Holy cow, right?! (Why shoot for eye-level when you can reach for the stars?)
My objective is simple. To give women with school-aged children a voice... to let them honestly talk about their happiness, their self-images, the amount of exercise they get, how well they eat, their stress levels, how much work they do around the house and how they really feel about being a mom. You know. What it's REALLY like to Do. It. All.
So... if you're a woman with children still in school, from seniors in high school down to newborns, and you have 13 minutes to share your voice with me, I'd love your help. If you have daughters, or granddaughters, friends or co-workers who would like to participate, I'd be delighted to have their assistance as well. Please share this!!
I'm looking for women from a diverse set of backgrounds. Different ethnicities. Zip codes. Job descriptions and life circumstances. It doesn't matter who you are, what you look like or what you do. If you're a mom, you're a mom. And we want you.
The answers we get will be the basis of the book I'm writing... a real-life look at mothering in this very hectic, demanding digital age. It will be funny, thoughtful, serious, and honest. Just like I am ;) I'm excited to share your many perspectives with woman from all over the world! I always love feedback, both positive and negative, so keep in touch with me here.
I thank you in advance for helping me share something that started as an idea a few years ago and has finally taken root. HOORAY!!!
Peace, my friends. xo