Now that it’s over I can finally let you in on my big secret. I’m not a fan of Mother’s Day. There could be a lot of reasons for that — I don’t love being “celebrated”, I don’t love being forced to do things in the name of being “celebrated” when I really just want to go to a yoga class, or maybe because I feel torn as a mother and a daughter. Or it might be because I’m super lazy and lame.
But if I am being honest, I probably don’t love Mother’s Day because the journey to motherhood has been a rocky road for me. I struggled to get pregnant the first time, I was in the hospital with the “Royal Disease” (hyperemesis gravidarium) during my second pregnancy, and I flat-out sucked as a new mother with my first. I couldn’t get him on a schedule, I couldn’t get him to stop crying unless he was being pushed around in a stroller, and I couldn’t get him to sleep…ever.
But that has changed. I hit a stride when Gavin turned one and then a year later, Chloe was born as one of those mythical “easy babies,” so I haven’t really had a tough time as a mother in years. Yet I still identify most with those first really hard months.
Today I have a feature up at Mommyish talking more about this strange feeling I just can’t shake.
I’m Convinced There Is No Comfort Zone In Parenting
Since suffering through that impossibly difficult first year with a challenging baby, I have never really allowed myself to get into a groove as a mother. This isn’t a sob story about how kids constantly change and ruin your perfectly laid plans. I gave up those expectations years ago. I have learned to really go with the flow in practice. Yet in my mind, I find myself always waiting for the other shoe to drop. Four years and two kids later – despite many more good days than bad – I constantly wonder “when is it going to be like that again?”
Read more on Mommyish…
And don’t forget, I publish a news story with a parenting angle every weekday at 9:30am (today I’m jumping for joy over the fact that someone asked “that question” to a man). Like the WTTM Facebook page here to get my newest news piece in your feed every morning.
Last week when I read Kristin Howerton’s Can We Bring The Holidays Down A Notch? I laughed and cried. I laughed because I didn’t have multiple school age children complaining to me about St. Patrick Day celebrations, but I cried because I know it’s coming. As it is, I’ve already struggled with how to bring them down after insane birthday celebrations and the holiday festivities are creeping in right behind them as sugar-fueled, expectation-riddled greed-fests. Continue reading
Even though she warned me, I didn’t listen to my editor and I read the comments on the essay published through the NYT Motherlode. All 210 (and counting) of them.
Anyone who blogs, or even has ever read a blog, knows comments can get ugly. It doesn’t matter how simple the subject or how much humor you inject into the piece, people hear and read what they want, not necessarily what you said. Readers often attach to the line or thought that speaks to them and address only that. I guess that is human nature.
This week I learned even the NYT comments get ugly. Many of them were also very smart and true. I had no choice but to dissect a topic I thought Ian and I had analyzed to death. What I hadn’t looked at more closely was the context in which this fight came up. These are not excuses and they don’t negate any of the real issues set forth in the Motherlode piece, however they provide insight into why this divisive topic elicited particularly high stakes. Continue reading
It is a question both Ian and I are asked on a regular basis. Today, I’m answering it in a piece for The New York Times Motherlode. Because I’m efficient like that. Continue reading
I’ve written about it here before, but a year later I am still struggling with nature vs. nurture in two ways. Mainly because I am starting to believe there is no such thing as nurture at all. My kids were born with complete personalities all their own and I find it hard to imagine that I influenced them in any way other than providing my DNA.
Second, they were born with completely opposite natures. Thanks, Mother Nature/Mother Hood for not throwing me a bone with two kids that are at least a tiny bit similar. I’d like to be able to apply the hard lessons I work out on the first child, to the second child, but you had other plans for me it seems.
Of course, they are still young, just one and three-years-old (even if this is the last week I can say that). So as they grow can I get my cautious son to be more bold? And can I temper my fearless daughter with just a touch of mindful awareness? If so, how? Because everything I do just seems to reinforce the way they already approach the world.
I’m exploring the topic I call “Parenting Upstream” over at Moonfrye today.
You might think the worst place to lose your car keys would be down a drain, but then you would know they were gone in that instant, and you would move on to Plan B.
If you lost your car keys in a drain, you would not be looking frantically under your daughter’s butt because you just had them in your hand before you had to wrestle her into her seat.
And you wouldn’t have to then take her out of the seat you fought so hard to get her in, only to have her scream louder when you place her in the seat well in front of her brother while you stick your hand in every crevice of the Graco monster. Continue reading
I know some of you with younger babies aren’t going to want to hear this, but it’s true. I had a baby who was a great sleeper, until she woke up one day and after two years decided that was it. She has a crusade on her hands and it’s the fight against a good night’s sleep. And I’m powerless.
Read more about our rediscovered sleep deprivation in my feature at Mommyish:
My Great Sleeper Is Suddenly A Crib Hating Tyrant
Has anyone been through this weird regression? Nothing is out of the ordinary – no changes, no travel, no daylight savings, etc. Will it pass? My sanity needs to know.
Gavin’s school is holding its annual book fair this week. I love a book fair. Walking into a room or hallway transformed to display all sorts of stories exhilarates me. In preschool you will find big pink books, small open-the-flap books, books that pop with color or sparkle. I love every bit of it. Or did. Until this year when I was the victim of some book fair momfoolery. What’s momfoolery? Oh, that’s when you thought you had it all figured out, but your kid schools you in a major way. Continue reading