The day we had the Quaker Supermoms shoot was the day after my yaya left and 5 days after my helper left. We were helpless in Manila, for the first time in 8 years. Thankfully, my husband owns his own business, too, so he was able to arrange working from home as I left the kids in his care for the whole day.
What’s a Supermom anyway?
Initially I was uncomfortable about accepting a label that came with such high expectations. However, I think every mom can consider herself a supermom — the fact that we carried an additional 25 pounds (at least) on our bodies, let our feet swell, threw up everything you ate after making your husband find that santol somewhere when the trees weren’t ready to bear fruit yet (although I was lucky I didn’t go through the puking) and most of all, that we allowed ourselves to have a bowling-ball-weighing human being taken out of us. Even Superman (in every DC version) would never be able to achieve this so we’ve got one up on him.
Beyond giving birth is another matter. My own schedule on a daily basis requires superhuman strength:
Wake up. Make kids eat breakfast. Prepare stuff for M’s school. Take a 2-minute bath. Poop? (no time for that!!) Bring M to school with N in tow. Go back home. Do laundry. Check emails. Telecon with clients. Prepare lunch. Make N eat. Put laundry in dryer. Nap time. Catch up on work while N is sleeping. When N wakes up, pick up M. Prepare snack. Snack. Homework or workbooks. Prepare dinner. Prepare bed for bedtime. Make kids eat dinner. Bath time. Read a book. Brush teeth. Put N to sleep. Put M to sleep. Back to work when they’re both asleep. Blog. Maybe watch a short TV series with my husband. Sleep around midnight. (And in between there’s Instagram, Facebook and Twitter)
Then when I wake up, it’s back to the same cycle. Some days, the universe throws a monkey wrench into the equation and disturbs the equilibrium of the usual chaos — someone in the family gets sick, a client requests something to be rushed, a storm comes along, the car gets bumped by a truck or the yaya and helper leave you for some stranger in Palawan (OK, let it go!!).
How does a Supermom cope?
1. With an amazing husband who can work with you during chaotic days — someone who knows he has to carry his own weight when it comes to taking care of the kids and the home.
- Everything he cooks is also amazing! (Thank God because I hate cooking! Make me clean the bathroom 3x a day but don’t make me cook!)
2. Food and Drink.
- Take small meals – about 5 a day. Breakfast, in particular, should be something that can sustain the energy necessary for our crazy day. My husband keeps telling me to have a good breakfast. Quaker Oats are actually one of the things he makes me eat because it’s a good source of fuel that can take us through the busy day. (That’s why I accepted the campaign too because we really eat this!)
- Drink at least 10 glasses of water a day. Don’t wait till you’re thirsty. Filter your own water and drink from glass or stainless bottles only. NEVER plastic!
- I am admittedly a coffee addict. Can’t get through the day without it.
3. The best support system in the office
- My kids should be grateful to my YBS and Aquasana families — they are amazing. If I didn’t have these competent people working with me, I’d go crazy and my kids would have no mother to see. Mang Ef, Jess, Joy, Chari, Cel, Jor and Jen, you are the best!
4. M’s Progressive school
- Light homework and relief from the pressure of a numbered grading system (DISCLAIMER aka KAMBYO: I’m only saying this because I know my personality would be super stressed with the traditional environment but I know most moms and kids thrive in trad schools.)
5. Household staff support
- 6 months ago, I would have said a good support system from our household staff but that’s gone out the window. Instead, I would say I survive because of the cleaning lady that comes to our house 1-2x a week. Thank you Cherry (and Pierra for referring her)! I hope my new yaya makes the grade though.
Most of all though, it’s with the support of friends and family who will remind you to breathe or get a drink (preferably with some kick).
It was a really fun shoot and yes, I kinda convinced myself for a few hours that I was a glamorous Quaker Supermom …
… until I got home and realized I still had to clean the bathroom.
And thank you to the wonderful team behind our shoot!
OK, next bathroom!