I write a lot. Empirically it’s true. For the past few weeks, I have been writing 1000 words a day for Mommyish (Monday through Friday — and if you’ve missed any, check out the WTTM Facebook page, I post them all there). I also write a fictional story (1200 words) a month for my beloved writing group. I scribble my crazy thoughts down in my journal almost every day. I am slowly working back to my novel in my mind (I will get there soon, I just know it!). And yes, I am still a full-time lawyer (more on that soon I hope). But the point is, I write a lot. It keeps me sane.
Most of the time, my writing is just in the ordinary course of my life. Meaning, I spout my opinion about one thing or another, fill in all the SEO requirements, add an appropriately credited picture, hit publish and submit an invoice at the end of the month. But sometimes I write something that makes me stop and say, “yes! This is good stuff!” Sometimes I look at my finished product and I think, “Wow, I really had something to say here.” Because when I start writing, I never know how it will turn out. Some pieces I love more than others. Some just flow almost like an out-of-body experience. Others I feel so strongly about, but the passion I feel doesn’t come across on the page. Some things I care less about and just need content. But I never really know until it’s done. In the words of one of my favorite funny bloggers, Wendi Aarons, “they’re not all gems.” And they’re not.
But sometimes they are. Continue reading
When my daughter was born and I was presented with an opportunity to go back to work, I knew there was no way I could turn it down. I was suddenly compelled to set an example for my daughter as a successful working mother in a way I had not been while I was home with my son for two years. I wanted to be “that kind of mother” who gives her the freedom to make her own choices, while continuing to break glass ceilings and forge work-life balance to make her path just a little bit easier (as previous generations have done for me).
I’ve since realized that “successful working mother” is a loaded goal. I am successful at work, yes. I am a professional, working at a reputable national law firm. I have a salary that allows me to take home six-figures even after egregious federal, state and New York City taxes. I have awesome family health insurance paid for by my employer — and it even includes dental. The “successful working” part rings true.
As does the “working mother” part. I am grateful to have a job that respects my priorities as a mother. I have not missed a phase-in session, orientation or smallest event at my children’s school and none of the partners I work for have blinked an eye. They trust that I have a handle on the work that needs to get done and they leave me to do just that (my associate co-workers are another story, but I’m ignoring them).
But “successful working mother” implies that I’ve got it all under control. That, while I wish I spent more time with my kids, I have negotiated drop-offs and pick-ups around conference calls and late night loan document distribution. But this simply isn’t the case. Every single day is a negotiation. If I have deals closing, Ian needs to do more at home. If he has an important client meeting, I offer to take the kids on the morning he’s supposed to do it. For the most part our schedule is utter chaos. Continue reading
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.
Recently a couple of celebrities have been talking about the not-so-wonderful aspects of pregnancy. And it made me want to puke. I know – that’s so shocking coming from me – the woman who reveals way too much about her prenatal and post-partum body. But it’s true. In the business of revealing “the truth”, some of them will be homeruns that everyone can understand and some of them will get you a face of disgust from the person across the table (or internet, as it may be).
I wrote a piece today at Mommyish revealing the “interesting” new truths from Drew Barrymore, Lisa Osbourne, and Snooki.
Do you relate or want to gag?
The Problem With Telling The Truth About Pregnancy
I have so much to tell you about, I’m really not sure where to start. How about chronological order?
On Friday two of my favorite women, Christie of Outlaw Mama and Arnebya of What Now And Why acquiesced to my badgering and joined me in a Huffington Post Live conversation about the bizarre overpowering phenomenon to crave more babies (they were pretty darn vocal in my comments and on their own blogs so I dragged them in with me). I’ve pasted the player for the segment at the end of the post, if you want to check us out.
On Saturday my family attended our first with-kids wedding. It was beautiful, it was perfect, and it was so much fun.