It has been watched more than a million times, and the newest viral video to take over the internet is reminding us how important mothers are in the fight against coronavirus.
The video is a commercial for Teleflora, but sometimes advertisements reflect reality and this one does. It uses viral internet videos to show how amazing America’s moms are and how they are creating safe spaces for their families in a world that doesn’t feel safe.
The commercial shows moms dancing with their children, letting them play ball in the house, celebrating birthdays with drive-by parades instead of parties and working from home (while holding a child).
“Our children will one day tell stories about how in the spring of 2020 the world did not stop,” the narrator states. “It kept spinning and moving forward, fuelled by the most powerful force on Earth: A mother’s love.”
Warning, you may want to grab a tissue before watching this:
The commercial is amazing, but it also highlights something we at Motherly are concerned about: The myth of moms as superheroes.
In the viral Teleflora ad the narrator says: “When things are at their worst, we can always count on moms to be at their best.”
That statement takes a lot of responsibility off of society and government and lays it on the shoulders of individual moms.
Moms are expected to be these superhero multitaskers who can somehow run a household, work, teach and make this pandemic a magical time for their children. A lot of moms are trying to do that, but if you feel like you are failing at it, know that you are not. Society has failed you by creating a system where you don’t have paid leave, don’t have work-life flexibility and where the unpaid work of caregivers is so undervalued.
If you made the pandemic fun for your kids today, that’s great. But if you just barely hung in today, that’s absolutely understandable.
We, as a society, cannot expect moms to be at their best when society is both at its worst and was not supporting mothers even before the pandemic changed our lives.
We, as a society, need to start supporting the people we call heroes—like moms and all the essential workers in America. As the New York Times reports, “nonwhite women [often mothers] are more likely to be doing essential jobs than anyone else. The work they do has often been underpaid and undervalued—an unseen labor force that keeps the country running and takes care of those most in need, whether or not there is a pandemic.”
We, as moms, need to start saying we are not superheroes and demanding support from a society built on our invisible labor.
America is counting on its mothers, as the Teleflora tearjerker states, but sadly, mothers can’t always count on America.