I live in Canada – in Victoria, BC. I’ve lived in Victoria most of my life but was born in Calgary, Alberta, home of the 1988 Winter Olympics and the Calgary Stampede. If you ask me where I’m from, I still say Calgary even though we moved to Victoria when I was 5.
What language(s) do you speak?
English is my first language and I’m fairly fluent in toddlerese. I studied French and German in school, and studied in Germany for a few months as well. I still understand some of both languages but my fluency is limited.
When did you first become a mother?
My son was born on June 13, 2008, and I’ve been working on my identity as a mother ever since.
Are you a stay-at-home mom or do you work?
I work full-time in communications and am now doing more and more writing work. My husband is a stay-at-home dad.
Why do you blog/write?
I write because it’s in me. Writing is how I naturally express myself best and, whether I was actively writing or not, I’ve always drafted stories in my head.
I started blogging in January 2011 because I was still really struggling with postpartum depression and I needed an outlet for it. I thought I was writing for myself, but I discovered a whole community of others in a similar position and have been inspired by the support and the opportunity to support others. That support and friendship extends to moms from all backgrounds – it’s a tough job, and I love that we can share our stories through blogging.
How would you say that you are different from other mothers?
I spent the first years of my son’s life thinking I was different from other mothers – that I wasn’t cut out for it, that I couldn’t do it and that everyone else had it figured out and I’d never get there. I’ve since learned that’s not the case and, in fact, I’m much more alike other mothers than I thought.
Based on comments from other moms, I think what does make me different – at least to a small degree – is that I’m willing to share the hard parts about being a mom. I’m more open now about my experience with postpartum depression, which is hard for a lot of women to talk about. I’m willing to admit being a mom is the hardest job I’ve ever had, and I try to support others who are stuck striving for perfection the way I used to and feeling bad about themselves as a result.
What do you view as the challenges of raising a child in today’s world?
I see the same challenges many parents do – trying to instill values in a world that’s different than when we were growing up, ever-changing technology that makes it easier for kids to be exposed to potentially unsafe or inappropriate things, feeling busy and wondering how we’ll ever fit it all in. But, I think the biggest challenge for me is that society now seems to hold parents to a standard that’s hard to meet, and creates expectations about what having a child will be like that’s not the true picture. It makes it very hard for moms to feel good about the job we’re doing or to admit that it’s not easy or even (gasp!) ask for help when we need it.
How did you find World Moms Blog?
Through @MomPhotographer on Twitter, who is now writing for the site as well. We connected over a similar story, and she mentioned she was sharing it on World Moms Blog so I came over to check it out. Such a fantastic idea, I just had to get involved!
You can also find Robin on her blog, Farewell, Stranger.
Do you have any questions for MamaRobinJ?
Photo credit to Rich Farr.