OK, I'm only half serious about this question.
I would say the generic answer is "she loves her kid".
However, what are actual things a good Mom kind of has to do for her kid(s)?
Tuck them in?
Pick them up from daycare, school, sports activities on time? (Don't be the last Mom!!)
That's where I want to go into more details. I'm not saying the Moms who let their kids consume Capri Sun and potato chips all the times are bad Moms. Not everyone is into sourcing organic ingredients and meal prep.
What I dare to say, however is, I draw the line at birthday cakes.
In my very personal opinion, a Mom - or Dad, not saying it's a female thing - should make sure her kid gets a birthday cake on their birthday.
Now I know, oftentimes one cake is not enough. They need one for school, their (insert hobby) team, the actual birthday party (should there be one), etc. It may get overwhelming.
I'm saying, one cake for the kid's birthday is not too much to ask.
And yet, this is the second time my Mom tells me that some kid she knows didn't get a cake because their Mom was too busy.
This breaks my heart.
I'm busy, too. I have a lot going on, but I'm never too busy to bake a cake for Colin's birthday - or tenth goal - for that matter. Birthdays are recurring events. They happen at a known date. You can plan ahead. You can bake and freeze. You can use boxed mixes, heck there's actual people that can be hired to bake, and then there's cakes that can be purchased!!!
So it was my own birthday two weeks ago.
My Mom invited us over for lunch (because we're too busy to do dinner, blame it on the hockey). She asked what I wanted, and what cake I wanted. I was touched, and of course I said marble.
It was a lovely lunch, and the cake was delicious. I enjoyed and appreciated the fact that my parents are still around and well enough to have these kinds of celebration.
Dad mentioned a girl in our neighborhood. He's friends with her parents. It was her birthday, too.
Wow, I had forgotten about this fact in the past years. I remember when she was born I was delighted to have another companion, even more so when my Grandma (with whom I shared my birthday, or should I say, who shared her birthday with me!!) passed away.
But to be honest, for the past years I totally spaced out about the neighbor.
"If you have a minute, get over there and wish her well" my Dad said. "She's sick and can't have a party."
Oh no, how unfortunate to be sick on her birthday. Not only a little sick, but she came down with Covid.
I don't usually like to be "told" what to do, but I did exactly this. I even brought a cake. You see, I had made one for my colleagues at work,
and - as usual - I doubled the ingredients and made an extra cake for the freezer.
I didn't freeze this one.
I put some curled ribbon around and went over there to ring the bell. Nobody answered. She was probably sleeping. But was nobody else around? Was she home alone, sick? Now she's a teenager and can usually look after herself, but still? (I feel a little judge here. But hey, after the pandemic it's generally accepted to work from home at least a day or two a week.)
I left to write a little note at home, went back and left the cake with my note at their doorstep.
I don't have a mobile number for anyone of the family, so I sent my Mom a picture of the cake and the note and asked her to forward it.
A couple of hours she sent me a picture of the girl, holding up a gigantic piece of cake. She looked miserable, but she managed a smile.
My Mom wrote "She was very happy about the surprise, even more so because her Mom didn't get around to make her a cake."
Here I am, asking myself if I 'm expecting too much of other Moms, or if I'm simply overrating a birthday cake?
Be it as it may. A couple of days later I found a hand-written note in our mailbox. The girl thanked us and told us she was so happy and delighted that we thought of her.