What do you “DO”?

At the first ever National Summit of the Coalition to End Sexual Exploitation, I’ll never forget … A beautiful, well-dressed lady walked up to me and scrutinized my badge. “Mama Crossroads?” She paused. “What do you do?”

I couldn’t help feeling a little like my mother, so many years ago. Often, when she was out with the five of us in tow, strangers would approach her and ask the same question: “What do you do?” She always hated that.

My mama and her five wacky kiddos. I’m the oldest!

After looking down the line of her wiggling, giggling, rascally, sometimes scraggly brood, I remember her laughing–at a loss for words–after the ‘big question,’ and answering: “I’m a MOTHER … of FIVE children!”

I suppose for me, the answer to that ‘big question’ is not so glaringly obvious. But like my mother, whenever people ask what I do I often feel self-conscious, as if the person asking is challenging me to define myself–to prove my worth.

I’m sure it’s just my own insecurity.

But as I sit here, bedridden after major surgery, I have time to ponder these things. I’m not sure why, but going under the knife always makes me look a little deeper inside myself. Ironic, huh?

So today I’ve been thinking … What DO I do? What IS Mama Crossroads?

Well, simply put: It’s my life. Or at least two huge pieces of it.

Before I launched my blog, I thought long and hard about my mission. “Mama Crossroads: Where Parenting Meets Anti-porn” is a perfect description. And at times like these, it’s good to revisit that.

I’m a Mama first. It was always my dream to be a Mom. Nothing with my spastic body is EVER easy … and becoming a mom was no different. Both my boys are miracles. So I don’t take them for granted.

Sometimes dreams do come true.

Also, I’m constantly reminding myself that even if I save the whole world from pornography, if I lose my children in the process I’ve totally missed the point.

I am always at a Crossroads. It often seems that the only constant in my life is CHANGE. Just when I think I’ve found my niche in the anti-porn movement, everything flips upside-down and I’m tossed somewhere down shore by an immense tidal wave.

At this point, I’ve lost count of the times that’s happened! So instead I’m trying to learn how to go with the flow. Perhaps my purpose is to do just that–to float around and plug in wherever I’m needed. I’m trying to learn how to embrace that.

I was a Parent before I was Anti-Porn. For me, it’s kids first and career second … for now anyway. But time passes, kids grow up. And after they are gone, I have a feeling I will still be a die-hard activist. So we’ll see!

Right now, I might be Mommy! first (which I LOVE), but my heart also beats with the rhythm of a worthy cause. And keeping those two balanced can be tricky. Like an old-fashioned scale I may weigh heavy on one side or the other at times. But isn’t that just life?

Being a mama is my favorite.

For a long time, I tried to keep my two worlds separate: life and work. But I’m learning to blend them together. Who ever heard of a “mommy blog” that also talks about fighting porn? It’s not a traditional pairing. But that’s who I am.

I’m hoping that by living both sides to the fullest, I can be a better parent and a better fighter in this cause–rather than one world robbing the other.

So … that’s me. In a nutshell.

Call me crazy, but it helps me to write these things out. And maybe next time, when someone asks me, “What do you do?” this post will help me remember … and breathe a sigh of relief.

My mother, by the way, is pretty amazing. And the five of us? We turned out alright.

Once upon a time, I was the big sister. Now I’m the shortest. 🙂

Happy Mother’s Day on May 8 to all you other amazing mamas out there too.



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