It’s July already! Funny how Mama-time seems to fly more fleetly (and sweetly) than any other, right?

My eldest son was born in July, almost smack in the middle of the month. Our Independence Day celebration was somewhat eclipsed by his imminent arrival, but we made of it what we could muster, after frantically hoarding onesies and painting the nursery walls. We were still eating leftover fried chicken and finding used sparklers on the patio when we brought him home from the hospital.

This month we tackle independence. Yes, tackle. For it seems that nowadays, freedom isn’t something we can merely celebrate. We have to fight for it, defend it, stand up for it, as Claire LeZebnick writes in “Make America Brave Again.” As part of the “Mama Tribe,” as Ellen Reynolds calls our motherhood in “No One Ever Told Me These 10 Things About Being a Mom,” we must consolidate our mighty Mama strength against the bigots who would have us build walls, the legislators who kiss the feet of the gun lobby, the judges who slap laughable sentences on convicted rapists.

Fry up some chicken, by all means, and light a few sparklers (and make sure you look nice and bronzed while you do it—Sheryl Eriksson shares self-tanning secrets this month). But as we head into the heart of summer, let’s not lose sight of how precious yet fragile our independence really is. Independence only thrives when it is taken care of, fiercely—something that we Mamas happen to be pretty good at.

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