Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Late spring. We're at an event with a full Bodacious Biscuit Love setup. Lots of conversations with people I don't know. During one particular chat with another woman, who appeared older than myself, I referred to our little nuggets of furry love as kids. Usually, when conversing with people who don't know us personally, I say "fur-kids." However, that particular day I was exhausted. Under-caffeinated. Overwhelmed by the number of times I had to interact with humans.

I probably said something weird like, "We bathe our kids once a month" or "Our kids prefer to poop in the backyard versus the front lawn..." The lady tilted her head, gasped and was mortified. That's when it registered in my brain. I quickly let her know I was referring to our FUR-kids (insert cordial giggle). She seemed slightly relieved. Her relief was followed by a snarky comment in the context of..."if people stopped calling their dogs kids and referring to themselves as Moms, there wouldn't be all this unnecessary confusion."

Well. Ain't. That. Some. Shit. 

Over the years, the word "mom" has evolved. It can been applied to a multitude of roles. Foster Mom. Rescue Mom. Step-Mom. Rehab Mom. Adoptive Mom. In the human world, the word Mom no longer just applies to a female who, after hours of intense pain and labor, gives birth to a tiny bundle of human joy. For some, this sentence alone is enough to provoke a fierce debate. It usually begins with, "You're not a real mom unless you've..."

And, it ends with something like, "So, unless you know what it's like to..."

Now, I'm not attempting to shrug off or discredit the entire process of conception, gestation, and birth. I have a great deal of respect and admiration for the women who carry a human for 9 months and have to contend with swollen bellies, sore boobs, hormonal changes and everything in between. And that's just the beginning. Kudos to all of you. This is something I have not experienced in my lifetime. By choice.

While I applaud y'all's strength and ability to tolerate great levels of physical pain, that whole process isn't the only means of, simply put, becoming a Mom. For those who think otherwise, you're entitled to your opinion, as I am mine, but isn't that confining the word Mom a bit too much? Think of the women out there who adopt human kids. Or, marries and becomes a step-mom. What about foster Moms? Are they any less of a Mom because they didn't physically give birth to the little human whose life depends on them?

When I think of the word Mom, various things come to mind. Many things. I know a lot of women who are Moms to human children. I also know quite a few who are Moms to non-humans. Dogs. Cats. Horses. This includes Lisa and I. We have 3 canine kids. Fur-kids. Kids. We're Moms.

Our 3 kids depend on us for everything. Yes, everything. Nourishment. Water. Love. Health. Comfort. Protection. Well-being. Etc. While there are very few similarities between human kids and fur-kids, this is one they do share. Dependency.

As Moms, we provide everything for our kids. Our world revolves around them. When Coco joined our family, life changed. Two years later, when Sophie arrived, our life changed. Again. In January of 2015, when we made the decision to adopt Lobo, yep. Life changed. A lot. We've made quite a few sacrifices.

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