I remember my first crush in Kindergarten. I also remember the first and last names of each boy I had crush on in subsequent grades up until middle school when I had THE BIG crush on one boy for like four years. He was the Winnie Cooper of my Wonder Years. I’ve had countless crushes in my life, most of whom never even knew. I suppose that is the gift of the combination of a big imagination and intermittent shots of anxiety to keep you practical.
I know some parents balk at the idea of little grade schoolers having crushes, raising eyebrows and saying how they are way too young for that, etc. But to these parents I ask, do you show your kids Disney movies? Continue reading
Yesterday my friend came over so I could glam her up for an event, as is tradition. She comes over before one of her fancy galas and we pop a bottle of bubbly and gab while I toddler-in-tiara her like the tyrannical stage mother I repress deep down inside me. Her teenage daughter was in tow yesterday and I was thrilled to find out I’ve been appointed her new Godmother. I even baptized her with a little Prosecco to make it official. Last night I sat down and wrote this to her and I’m sharing it here with permission.
I know I said I’d post my TV segment details yesterday, but I have something else on my mind so that’s going to wait.
I recently spent a few days with our friends’ preteen daughters and they had lots of questions, everything from what I was like when I was their age to what I’d change about my appearance. They were so pure and yet so cautious of being judged. It got me thinking back. I once read something to the effect of, if you don’t have a weird friend, you are the weird friend. Continue reading
Overall, it’s been a good week. But I detected the fumes of Mommy burnout yesterday. I’m tired. I’m tired of riding the waves of feeling suffocated and having the craziest biggest love wash over me when I see my girls’ little teeth as they giggle at something I say. Avery has already lost so many of her baby teeth and each one feels like a kick in the gut. Like all those nights we spent together walking around the living room in the glow of the TV because she was teething and only wanted to be rocked have come full circle. I felt so desperate and alone just doing whatever I could to coax her to sleep.
The first week we brought her home from the hospital I laid awake in terror picturing this giant digital clock counting down the 18 years until she leaves us. I still find myself exasperated with each little sign of my kids growing up. All of a sudden their legs are so long. Their oh-so-kissable cheek meat is disappearing. I’m so grateful that I get to watch them grow, but I have this gnawing feeling that it’s all going too fast. Like I’m one of those Russian nesting dolls and the smallest one is constantly in the middle of a crazy desperate meltdown, but the dolls in between us are chill and keep the little panic-stricken one mostly medicated, er, insulated so my outer self can function.
Sometimes little voices calling “Mom!” sound like nails on a chalkboard. Sometimes I get tired of carrying around all of the dandelions they pick for me. And I feel so guilty. I know that time is flying by and I will long to hear their tiny voices, have them fall asleep on top of me, and I’ll look at dandelions and wish someone cared enough about me to pick them for me. A friend recently sent me an article that said “we’re not meant to parent for this many hours a day,” and some days it feels so true. It’s so much pressure being the person they love and hate the most. The one they treat the best and the worst.
Years ago I attended a Junior League luncheon where Hoda Kotbe told a story about when she had just been diagnosed with cancer and didn’t want anyone to know, and someone said to her, “Don’t hog your journey. It’s not just for you.” It resonated. We all have different challenges in parenting and different degrees of tragedy we have to endure, but each of our journeys are valuable to one-another and should be shared, considered and appreciated.
Now it’s Friday night. I bathed my kids, picked up toys and dog poop in the playroom, sprayed some cleaner on the carpet, then sprayed some self tanner on my ghostly white skin. Here I sit in bed, typing around the sleeping child draped across me. The glow of Octonauts on TV and the computer screen are the only light in the room. Avery is off in her dreams and I am off in my thoughts, but we are alone together.
I may be the only person in history who has never filled out a March Madness bracket and this year is no exception. But if you eh-like-ah-da sports, you should definitely check out the blog and podcasts over at SprotsTakes.com. Last month I was honored to be featured as one of their “Badass Babes” for Galentine’s Day. I love the laid back spirit of this group of female writers. Might even make me want to follow the sports…
Here is my Badass Babe Interview by Staff Writer Emily Kristen
Emily Kuhlman may be the funniest woman I’ve ever met. Our paths crossed at a blogging conference a few years ago, and she’s been on my “Must Follow” list ever since.
She’s the brains behind Mrs. Kansas Mommy, a blog where she candidly and poignantly describes raising two little Badass Babes of her own. It’s an honest look at parenting and it often makes me literally laugh out loud.
Check her out on Instagram and Twitter
Kristen: What’s your favorite way to spend a day off?
Kuhlman: Watching This Is Us and eating candy that I steal from my kids’ Halloween buckets while they’re at school.
Kristen: What qualifies someone as a “badass” and do you think of yourself as one?
Kuhlman: Yesterday my five year old daughter drew a picture depicting me as a pregnant unicorn. I’d say that means I’m pretty badass in her eyes, especially considering I’m not even pregnant. Or a unicorn. Additional Badassery:
- Doing things that scare you because they might make your life bigger, like entering a pageant as a grown woman, or going after a job you’re not quite qualified for and working your ass off to be great at it, or birthing a child. In that order. I know because I’ve done all of those things, some twice.
- Admitting when you f*cked up and moving forward to correct it. I don’t understand people who have a hard time apologizing. I view it as a way to reclaim your dignity and show that you’re the kind of person who deserves respect too.
- Wearing orange because it’s your favorite color, even after your best friend tells you it looks bad on you.Jessica.
Kristen: As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Kuhlman: A pregnant unicorn. Also a singer, actress, travel agent, and marine biologist (I was very into the movie Free Willy).
In a way, I became all of these things if you count the Sea-Monkey kit my kids got for Christmas as marine biology. Which I do.
Kristen: Who has inspired you most?
Kuhlman: My celebrity heroes are mostly First Ladies and Comedians: Jackie, Michelle, Louie, Tina, Amy. It may seem like an odd pairing of jobs but if you think about it, these have to be some of the most emotionally-brave people on the planet to do what they do.
In terms of inspiring my life choices and actions, my women friends are the people who bring out the most energy, humor and compassion in me.
Kristen: What are your goals for this year?
Kuhlman: Sadly I don’t have an answer for that, so I will create some now:
- Stop swiping my card when there’s a chip reader. It’s a waste of my time and yours.
- Beat level three on Mario Run.
- Make it to at least one athletic event of each of my nieces and nephews who play the sportsballs.
- Get published.
- Be a better person than I was last year. My husband and I will vote in December and then no matter the consensus, my parents will decide.
You can check out more Badass Babes here.