An Open Letter to the “Hot Facebook Mom” Maria Kang

19 Mar

Dear Maria,

First of all, let me say that I dig that you have a message and a vision for your life. I read through your blog and I could relate to some of it (I was unmarried and not financially prepared when I got pregnant the first time too! The second time I was married but not financially prepared and now I’m neither married nor pregnant and not financially prepared for life in general).  I didn’t really find much else that spoke to me, but that’s okay. I respect your story and your journey thus far.

maria

I saw once again that you wanted to know what my, and other moms who don’t make fitness a priority,  excuse is.  Maria, while I appreciate your concern, I find what you’re doing to be just more mom-shaming, wrapped in what you think is an inspirational message.   I’m not even going to touch on the fact that I find it to be fat-shaming as well,  which I do, but for the purpose of this letter, I am just going to address the mom-shaming aspect. However, I will answer your question at the end of this letter.

Let me just say that I am a huge proponent of moms not shaming other moms for their choices.  I find parenting hard enough without having to concern myself with Polly Perfect who is constantly on Facebook proclaiming to the world how perfect her kids are, accompanied by pictures of little Sally and Billy  munching away happily on homemade organically grown apple sauce. I assume this is not the impression you want to leave, but I may be wrong about that. It seems that looks are extremely important to you, so I can imagine your need to control every aspect of what is even thought about who you are is extremely important too. I’m not judging, just pointing out that I find you to be a bit of one of those moms that I avoid at baseball practice.  Or on Facebook. Or in life. Ever.

maria

According to the picture you posted above, as well as what I’ve read about you in your blog, I know that you have three sons, born in 2009, 2010, and 2011, and that you are tired. I can only imagine! I know you don’t have a nanny or a chef and that you are not an athlete or a fitness model and you work over 8 hours a day. One of those arrows up there supposedly points to your stretch marks, but I’ll be damned if I can see them, but that’s not the point.

The above picture, which I  know is small, also says that you “practice consistency, persistence, discipline, intensity, patience, desire, focus, and faith”.   Good on ya girl! I do too, though I find patience to not come naturally to me,  I do try to practice it.  I’ve got the desire part down pat though, know what I’m saying? Yeah you do.

Maria, you are absolutely gorgeous, that is for sure. It is obvious that you have made fitness and “being hot” a priority in your life, and you have since the age of 16 when you started competing in beauty pageants.

I have NO PROBLEM with beauty pageants. My sister was in the past an actual beauty queen, and she still is beautiful, though I’ve had it with her wearing her crown for every family function. I understand  prioritizing what is important to you, that’s what life is all about, right?  I DO have a problem with your holier than thou attitude directed at those of us who do NOT make those things a priority. I KNOW being fit and being healthy are important, though just to be clear, and I’m sure you know this, skinny does not automatically mean healthy and overweight does not automatically mean unhealthy.

Maria, you may or may not be mortified to learn that we are actually not all that different.

This is from your blog,

I’m a wife, mother, business owner and nonprofit founder.

I dream.

I set goals.

I plan.

I take action.

I reflect.

And I repeat.

Well, me too bitch! I mean bitch as in girlfriend, no disrespect meant, because while you do irk me a little, we are similar. That’s right, Maria, you have a lot in common with a mom who has two boys, and is overweight, and exercises very lazily 3-4 times a week, and is right this moment drinking a Coca damn Cola, because I also dream! I set goals! I plan! I take action! I reflect! And I repeat! I couldn’t help but notice that you have a vision board next to your treadmill. GIRL, mine is in my bedroom.

I know there will always be people who insist that their way is the only and right way. The debates between those who have chosen to bottle feed their children rather than breast feed, those who choose cloth diapers over disposable, those who co-sleep rather than not, those choices are all valid and good choices.  Figuring out what works for ones own family and filtering through everything that is out there about what you SHOULD be doing is one of the toughest things about being a parent in my opinion.

I understand that you have chosen to prioritize fitness in your life, and that is a good and valid choice. Maria, I will now answer your question. My excuse I guess,  is that I just haven’t made fitness a priority in my life, but it’s not an EXCUSE, it’s a choice. It’s a choice you may not agree with, and that’s fine, but it doesn’t mean that because you have made it a priority in your life that I am any less the person or mom that you are.  The words that are on your picture as far as things you “practice” are not exclusive to you and your commitment to fitness.  This year I have chosen to conquer fear to do something I have always wanted to do, stand-up comedy. I write daily, even if it’s just something like this, I am someone who constantly tries to learn from my past and is striving to make myself the person I want to be, not only for myself, but for my children. I want them to see a mom who is not afraid and who kicks ass. I think those are things you want your children to see in you as well, we just see the end product as something different. And it’s okay! We’re both right!

So Maria,  let’s agree that maybe you knew you were stirring up some controversy when you posted your “what’s your excuse” picture, because I think you did. You’ve been blogging for a long time, since 2005, but nobody gave  you much thought before that picture took off and went viral. I don’t think you’re a MEAN person, and I know you think you are impacting the world in a positive way. If I could wish anything for you it is that you would come from a place of support rather than shame, because we are not all that different and maybe we could learn something from each other, but it is hard to listen to someone when you feel they are attacking you.

Also, your boys are adorable and I wish you nothing but luck in your endeavors.

Love and donuts (I’m sorry, now I’m just being a brat)

Amy

10 Responses to “An Open Letter to the “Hot Facebook Mom” Maria Kang”

  1. kerbey March 19, 2014 at 12:01 pm #

    As I sit here, craving a Coca damn Cola, I am thinking of the women I know who have kids with autism, one who is blind and about to get a feeding tube, one who has spent the last year getting chemo for her daughter with aplastic anemia, one with three children who busts her ass at Gold’s Gym each day while her husband is in Afghanistan for the umpteenth time and STILL doesn’t look a damn bit like this, and the ones on the prayer requests at church who are struggling to pay their light bills or the coffin for their parent’s burial. So I think those are pretty good excuses, Maria. The ones wearing kerchiefs to church each Sunday because their hair has been radiated off, they also aren’t super motivated to hop on a treadmill when they’re so nauseated they can’t drive. Maria may have a perfect body now, but some day those cells may turn around and attack her, and you can’t spin class yourself back into good health.

    • Amy April 7, 2014 at 2:34 pm #

      “can’t spin class yourself back into good health” is just one of many things I adore about your comment. Thank you as always for reading and commenting. xoxoxo

  2. Deech March 19, 2014 at 12:06 pm #

    I really have no comment other than I wouldn’t touch her with a 15 foot cattle prod. I mean, let’s face it. If she is so busy and this is her priority, if I were single I would have no hope of squeezing into her to do list…nor would I want to. Sure, the external appearance is spectacular but look at the entire package and you start to see the cracks.

    Thanks…but no thanks.

    • Amy April 7, 2014 at 2:33 pm #

      Thank you for reading, my good man. xoxoxo

  3. bamboozled1 March 19, 2014 at 5:16 pm #

    *thats nice dear*
    sure, i might wanna look like her, and with my body type, i could probably do it easier than many people… a while back i saw that little storm she created vs the lingerie campaign lady…

    and while i agree with her on some things… i dont particularly wanna be like her… she comes across, well, judgy and arrogant, and we all know where that sort of thing comes from *cough* self hate *cough* and thats not healthy. it sends the wrong message.

    props to her for what she does for herself… but the shaming… nuh uh. i like to follow the people who genuinely care and want to help people feel better about themselves. you dont do that by shaming them into it.

    • Amy April 7, 2014 at 2:32 pm #

      That’s nice dear cracked me up! Love it. Thank you for reading and I share your sentiments exactly 🙂

  4. Gina McKinnis March 20, 2014 at 9:17 am #

    I love you. That is all.

    • Amy April 7, 2014 at 2:32 pm #

      GIRL I LOVE YOU TOO!

  5. Jessica March 20, 2014 at 10:41 am #

    I, too, had a weight loss journey not long ago. I lost 45 pounds. Damn, I felt great!! And I looked great and I knew it. But you know what? Some people still did the shaming thing….now I was too skinny. I didn’t eat enough. I am still the same person they knew a year ago, but because I had done this great thing (for myself, as I wasn’t healthy, just overweight), they chose to shame me. Now, I’m pregnant, and I still hear that I don’t eat enough. Lord, why can’t we just be happy for others, rather than breaking them down? I don’t know, but I’m not about shaming. Encouragment for whatever stage of life you’re in, that’s what we need. We need to remember the folks in Kerbey’s post…the ones who want to exercise, but can’t. Or who bust their asses at the gym and see no difference. Where’s the empathy????
    I prefer the real people, the kind you can see walking down the street, not the facade on the outside. Let’s face it, you can’t judge a book by it’s cover.

    • Amy April 7, 2014 at 2:31 pm #

      Jessica, I love your comment and thank you for reading. I absolutely agree, why CAN’T we just be happy for others? I don’t get it either, I really don’t. Sadly, I think you hit the nail on the head. Some people will shame others regardless. I always remind myself that the fact that they do that says everything about them, and really nothing about who they are choosing to shame.

      Thanks again for reading!!

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