Wednesday, March 23, 2011
The Horrific Turmoil of Being a Mom and Drinking Diet Coke
Recently, like this past Sunday, I was sitting in church. My Emma was chatting about something, my Audrey was constantly asking to use the bathroom, and my Ben was making my Emma laugh which in turned made me try to think of quick and quiet ways to get them to settle down. There is such a fine line, for me, about teaching my kids when to be quite, reverent, and self entertainment. Plus how do I teach my children to pay attention to adult speakers when I am having the same problem? I also have come to terms with how crafty my children are at knowing there is nothing that I can do besides the "SHHH" and "be quite" during this sometimes long hour. But this post isn't going to be about my bad parenting on Sunday, but the relationship of events that coincide with my bad parenting skills this day.
So this is how my Sunday was going. I often wonder if maybe when I am older and the snacks and church bags are gone that I might actually be able to understand and follow the speakers. In between the stories about Halo Legos and how Emma hearing the speaker say the word, "Jesus" (Mom, he said Jesus, he said it again. Now he said Benjamin, King Benjamin... is Benjamin a King? I thought he was my brother....) I hear the speaker relate talking about the different hypocrisy of the members of the church. He then comments (and yes, he posted his talks on his blog so I can then cut and paste here. All in all it really is a good talk that you should read because it makes valid points), "Any public manifestation of righteous behavior should not be a mask that is taken off when in the privacy of our home" in which I chuckle... yeah, chuckle... Right... how would I ever be able to mask my hypocrisy. I own it. Seriously?! I think I spend more of my time apologizing for my kids and MY mistakes than being able to poke and prod at what anybody else is doing wrong. I swear it is always one of mine or something I said without letting the words wheel around in my head before I say them outloud (my mom told me to do that all the time).
The speaker then said, "We are not immune from hypocrisy. It is found in the ...people who criticizes an associate who occasionally smokes marijuana but who himself has a strong Diet Coke addiction". I chuckle again, Diet Coke and the Mormon church are as controversial as the Disney Animators and the Little Mermaid or Charlie Sheen getting back on Two and a Half Men. Why does Diet Coke raise the ire of so many Mormons?
I then posted on my facebook, " .. Then I started to think about it. One of the biggest stereotypes of Mormon woman is that of having an "Addiction" to Diet Coke. It is common is circle of friends to hear, "Most Mormon Moms actually have a Diet Coke IV shoved into their veins. Drinking it takes too much time" (That is for you, Jennifer Ellis).
But the actually addiction to diet coke, I think is a fallacy. To be more specific, I'm going to have to go with the false dilemma fallacy.... "the fallacy can also arise simply by accidental omission of additional options rather than by deliberate deception". So here is how the, naysayers see Diet Coke and all the moms talking about "Holy Crap, I need a Diet Coke" after spending the day with the kids. Others make take comments such as, "My weekly Saturday trip to the grocery store to pick up a 2-liter of “Happy Juice” for consumption after church each Sunday has become a warped act of religious devotion for me" might realm on the point of addiction if you don't find the humor behind it. Do the uneducated in the world of soda drinking even know that for most, Diet Coke is slang for a drink?? Let's go get a Coke... Sometimes, as a mom, we just got to get out and "go and get a coke". Plus, I don't even really like Diet Coke, but am more of a Coke Zero, Diet Pepsi fan. So much that is accidentally omitted in this deliberate attack on my sanity.... my need for that 15 minutes of quite where I don't have to listen to anybody fighting or asking questions. Seriously, my kids stop talking when the lady comes on the box and says, "Can I take your order?". The speaker of this talk then went to his blog and as a joke posted... " I am an addict -- "Hello, my name is Debbie and I am addicted to 15 minutes of just me time". So let's get the actual facts straight here...
As a mormon mom, what do I have?? I don't social drink at parties, I don't go clubbing with the girlfriends in the wee hours of the night, I never go to Starbucks and sit, I forgo the occasional use of weed in the backyard (Yes, this happened alot with the mom that I nannied for)... I go get a Diet Coke. If you walk into a house outside of the typical mormon home you might hear, "Would you like a cup of coffee?" I found this quote that says, "When I serve the coffee and if it is one of those wonderful tasting pots of coffee, my guest and I seem to have a much better conversation. We both feel happier because the coffee is so delicious".... Diet Coke is like the Social Aspect of the Mormon Church. So while it is not breaking the word of wisdom to have anything in moderation... the poor stereotyping of mom's addiction to Diet Coke has got to stop. Sitting with my friends on the grass during the summer time sipping a 48 ouncer of Diet Coke is just delicious. I have been known to go to the drive through and bring back drinks so we can just sit and chat.
So here's to the drink that has brought together millions of frazzled moms on a hot summer day. It's the drink that has sat in on millions of mormon mom's fridge around the world as devote followers. It's the drink that has helped millions of women overcome the daily headaches of being a mom. It's the drink that signified the official transition from wife to mother.