As if parenting isn’t hard enough already, we now have ‘Celebrity Mum of the Year’ Awards. Celebrity mums, like all mums, need support – not to win an award because they quickly returned to their pre-birth weight like Cheryl, or have conceived a third baby, like Kate Middleton.
I want you to think hard. Who is the best mum you know? I have never given this any thought but in solidarity with you, reader, I now will…
There is one woman who springs to mind. She has a daughter the same age as mine. She is kind and loving. She gets down with the kids, at their level, and puts all her energy into playing with them. She works exhausting full time hours to provide for her family.
She wishes she had more time with her daughter.
I can think of another. She is calm, thoughtful and creative. Everything her daughter needs, she is given. When her daughter is looking for comfort, she cuddles her and keeps her close. When she’s not, she encourages her to run off and play with the other kids.
She worries that her child isn’t in the best sleep routine.
One more. A mother who cooks her son the most delicious, healthy food. He doesn’t eat sugar. He doesn’t watch TV. They go to art galleries, they play together, he is brought into her bed at night when he’s poorly.
She feels guilty that sometimes when he’s in childcare, she does something for herself: like gets her hair cut.
My point, if not already clear, is this: no mother is perfect. Even if I think she is – she won’t. We all question ourselves. We fret about our decisions. We wonder if our children need to be fed more, or less. We panic about breastfeeding them to sleep, and feel like failures if we introduce formula.
What we see from the outside: the calm, collected, patient, preened mother – may be a different story behind closed doors. Many mothers suffer silently with anxiety. She may look like she has it all under control, but feel as if her world is utterly chaotic.
So when I read about the Celebrity Mum of the Year Awards 2017 – that pit Cheryl Tweedy, Coleen Rooney, the Duchess of Cambridge – Kate Middleton, Amal Clooney, Binky Felstead, Geri Horner, Faryal Makhdoom and Amy Childs against each other – I felt angry.
These women may be celebrities, but they still have feelings. They probably don’t give a rat’s arse that they’ve been nominated, but they may feel saddened by the press surrounding it. They are being judged on their body shape, style and public behaviour.
Because that is all the information we have about celebrity mums.
Apparently, it’s between the Duchess and Cheryl. Kate, because she is pregnant for the third time and Cheryl, because she managed to snap back to her pre-birth weight really quickly. Which is a great way to determine how good a mother she is to her young baby.
The fact that these ‘awards’ are hosted by a plastic surgery company? Not even worth delving into. Suffice to say, a middle aged man who encourages body hatred – and thinks women need to nip, tuck and swell certain parts of their body to be accepted by society – probably isn’t the best person to host ‘mum of the year’ awards.
Why do you think: are Celebrity Mum of the Year Awards a load of bollocks, or just a bit of fun?