Ironically enough, when my husband and I first knew that we wanted to have a baby, being a freelancer seemed like the worst idea ever. After all, grown-ups had grown-up jobs, right? They had benefits and salaries and paid leave. I spent much of my adult life chasing down that perfect “big girl job,” the one that would offer enough stability for me to be able to take care of my family.
Like many people my age, however, I was surprised and dismayed to learn that, well, there wasn’t a whole hell of a lot out there for me or for anyone else. Continue reading →
I feel like in the last couple of weeks, I have been subject to a near-perfect storm of fuckery that has conspired to make me as hot and miserable (in all senses of the word) as possible. When you’re this frigging pregnant (and in the middle of a summer heat wave), even the most saintly among us will have a hard time keeping their cool. To complicate matters, it’s not as if you can go out for a drink with friends to take the edge off or indulge in whatever your substance of choice might be. And if one more person tells you that “stress is bad for the baby,” you’ll have to add hiding the body to your third trimester to-do list. I wanted to share a quick list of my favorite, non-controlled-substance, mostly summer-friendly ways to relax when you’re very, very pregnant and maybe very, very mad.
Going for a walk
Reading something that makes you feel understood. For me, that’s Tiffany Dufu’s Drop the Ball.
Indulging in something yummy (my favorites right now are mochi ice-cream and poke bowls)
Cleaning (this is a psychological tactic called sublimation, and it’s a great way to get some stress out AND satisfy the nesting urge. Particularly if it involves beating rugs).
Swimming, or, for the lazy, float tank therapy
Blogging/writing in a journal
Sex (if you feel up to it and don’t want to kill your partner. And if you do, go solo 😉 )
Quiet time (particularly if you have a small child already)
Get something crossed off your to-do list
Try a class or something you won’t have time to do after baby gets here
Watch something on TV
Take a walk on the beach
What works for you when you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed?
With just eight weeks left to go, I find myself thinking a lot about the last stage of pregnancy–birth. It’s the last hurdle to jump before we get to meet our new little one, and while I’m over-the-moon-excited, I’m also beginning to get really nervous all over again. Fortunately, we have the most compassionate and loving prenatal care that we could possibly wish for in our midwives, and with their support I’m eagerly anticipating our upcoming home birth.Continue reading →
It’s very, very early in the morning. My husband and I are sitting in our living room, quietly scrolling through our phones. Despite our best efforts to stay positive, cheerful and productive, we have had extraordinarily trying days. We are emotionally and physically wiped.
Part of the stress, I realize, comes from having to pretend that everything is A-okay all freaking day. It’s absolutely not. We’re dealing with work and school and family and finances and self-doubt and clutter and all kinds of other stuff too. I realized today what I needed to do was just sit with the negative feelings, because I was wasting a lot of emotional energy trying to avoid what most people I knew would inevitably say. Continue reading →
I don’t know if it’s that I’m weeks away from my thirtieth birthday, or that I’m heavily pregnant with my second child, but I feel my adulthood keenly. When I was 25 years old and expecting my daughter, I felt like I was stepping into this new and exciting phase of my life. This time around, I feel settled, tired, and a bit sore. Or, to quote Bilbo Baggins: “thin, sort of stretched—like butter scraped over too much bread.”Continue reading →
Something about hitting this particular milestone feels super-significant to me. It isn’t just that, by most reckonings, 28 weeks is the start of the third trimester (although that is certainly in the back of my mind too). It just suddenly feels like such a small amount of time. Continue reading →
My Mother’s Day started off in the most achingly beautiful way with a text message from my oldest step-daughter, Kayla. She sent me “Happy mother’s day. I love and appreciate you for everything I hope your sunday is awesome!!”
As I read the message over and over, I was transported back to what it felt like to hold her as she dozed off, still only three or four years old. I actually don’t remember how old my girls were when we first met. I just remember being so impressed with, and terrified of, these little tiny people. Continue reading →
Every parent in every generation has a different set of tools that they rely upon, and well, technology hasn’t always been kind parents in the 21st-century. Because of the prevalence that screens and other advances have in our lives, we’ve become arguably more disconnected from each other than ever before. However, I can’t pretend that it also hasn’t made my life easier in a lot of really small ways. I catch myself using the same little hacks over and over again to make life a bit more manageable, and they’ve become nearly indispensable in the way I raise my kids. So I just wanted to give a quick shout-out to my top five tech-hacks that make parenting a tiny bit easier.
I love a good sale, especially when it’s on something that
my family really, really needs. So I had to pop online to share the amazing
offer that’s going on for one of my favorite businesses, Cord Blood Registry.
Cord Blood Registry, or CBR, has been around for quite some time. They’re the oldest and most respected cord blood banking system around, with over 800,000 samples stored. When I had Phoenix, almost four years ago, they were really the only show in town. I had never heard of cord blood banking before, and once I understood what it was, I knew it was something I wanted to do for my newborn baby.
I am a naturally affectionate person, and I love my kids like you wouldn’t believe. I was the baby of my family—the youngest out of all my grandmother’s grandchildren—so I never grew up around really little kids (and definitely wasn’t in charge of caring for any of them). So when I had my daughter I was over the moon with affection and oxytocin. I wanted to snuggle her non-stop and smell her little baby head. I knew I would be firm, but gentle. I would listen to her. I would be compassionate and engaged.
As the saying goes…everyone’s a great parent until they have kids.