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Living Lab: Will NYers help a struggling mom navigating through the city?

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(PIX11)-- It's a photo shoot for Scherrie Williams-Donaldson and two of her three boys.

This is a savvy's mom's way of getting Valentine's Day pictures while offering up her little guys as models for new clothing line she's profiling on her moms' blog "Thirty Mommy."

It sounds like the perfect synergy for a city mom, but what it takes to get to this point has her wishing she would have stayed home in her pajamas.

"It's rough -- really rough," Williams-Donaldson said.

Forced to navigate around Titanic-sized icebergs and fold up strollers, all to try to hold to the ideal of raising a cultured city kid in a fast-paced town more suited for single people.

"You feel discriminated against," Williams-Donaldson said.

New York City is full of intrepid mamas determined to give their kids an urban education--exposure to museums, arts and a diversity of cultures, but tackling some of the simplest chores can take a monumental effort.

It begs the question--what happened to that storied village needed to raise our little ones?

""I had a moment yesterday where I felt like kicking shins where I was trying to get off and people were rushing in," Williams-Donaldson said.

PIX11 followed Williams-Donaldson undercover as she tackled her day, which starts with the busy subway, the unkindest place of all, according to moms.

Williams-Donaldson was seen fighting off the crush of commuters, forced to stand with her four-month-old strapped in front and her three-year-old riding in the stroller. Not a single person offers a seat until the nearly 70-year-old woman does it herself.

"I can't imagine people not," Williams-Donaldson said.

The life-long New Yorkers says people aren't as helpful as they once were and blame it on their phones. Everywhere games are played, texts are sent, lives are managed, it leaves them oblivious to others, according to Williams-Donaldson.

"They're not even aware," Shirley Martinez said. "They're so into themselves."

"Most of the time someone walks past you they have a phone in their hand and hat's part of the reason they won't help you," Martinez said.

"Everyone's in their technology, portable games, their cellphones," Williams-Donaldson said.

The toughest part of the trudge, schlepping a stroller up the steep subway steps where sometimes there's a helpful hand, but too often, everyone is simply too busy to bother.

"To get on the train I had to push the stroller down the steps and no one helped," Martinez said. "...even though there were people around."

There was a bright spot on the bus where New Yorkers were only too quick to pick up the stroller, they also helped stash it away on the bus and pop them open outside.

"Thank you so much," Williams-Donaldson said.

The nanny who helped Williams-Donaldson on board was all smiles as she cooed over helping out cute little Avery.

"It tough for a mom to do it by herself?" the nanny asked. "It's a lot of work, but he's such a good kid."

Even so, buses are a limited option for a lot of borough moms, like Williams-Donaldson, who travels from her Prospect Park home for blogger activities that frequently have her pounding pavement, kids in tow, in Manhattan.

Taxis, a luxury for many, are no bargain either.

"I was waiting for a cab," Williams-Donaldson said. "It wouldn't stop for me. Not at all."

And for those that do, too often drivers don't even get out to open a trunk and help stow baby gear.

"On a scale of one to ten how tough it is to be a mom in New York City," Williams-Donaldson. "It's an 11."

"Tough enough to be a woman," she said.

The stay-at-home mom's life may seem storied from the outside, but Scherrie and others say their commitment to a New York upbringing is waivering as the lure of big SUV's and playrooms beckons.

"Some days it's good, some days it's terrible," Williams-Donaldson said. "I would leave, even though I love it, I would contemplate leaving."

"I need to just get a car and get out of here," Martinez said.