Sometime during the day, in the middle of the things that did and didn't happen, your breath caught in your throat (for an instant) as you watched your baby (no matter how old your "baby" might be, now) from across the room. He is the best thing you've ever seen.
Carving out time to make these things happen will of course require sacrifice. But hey, we're already great at sacrificing these days. We're professionals. And we shouldn't have to sacrifice ourselves any longer.
This year, I took a different approach. I wanted to have a party that was as stress-free as possible for me. Because when Mommy is stressed, no one has fun, especially Hubby. So, what does one Mommy looking for the easy way out do to throw a fun birthday party? Outsource.
The latte was a gift, something to be appreciated. A simple reminder that kindness is palpable and comes in a red cardboard cup, with whipped cream on top. Sometimes we have to just accept help, just allow ourselves to be on the receiving end.
Guilt can be a big neon sign pointing to inner needs that aren't being met. It can also lead you to satisfaction and joy that comes from spending your time doing things you love and things that nourish you on all levels, including in your work.
I know that it's good for us to be apart. I know she thrives when socializing with other kids and developing relationships with family and close friends. But I feel horrible for abandoning her, and wonder if she internalizes it as "mama cares about something else more than me."
The best day ever was when I remarried last summer -- my two daughters and my husband's two sons were the entire wedding party. What followed was the anticipation of the best honeymoon ever to Bora Bora! I couldn't believe how euphoric I felt... until I hit "the glitch."
As I sat down at the kitchen table with a cup of coffee and my iPhone, I noticed that my husband was busy unloading the dishwasher and re-organizing a cupboard. A wave of guilt washed over me. I'd slept later than he had by a good hour, yet I had no intention of getting up to help him.
We've all had those days. The kids are fighting. They don't appreciate the treat you gave them. They're rude. They forget their manners. Does it make them monsters or you a bad parent? Despite what many would say while wagging a finger, No. It does not.
For all of you mamas insisting your immaculate house is messy, and all of you normal mamas therefore afraid to have anyone come into your house ever, because that level of clean is just not achievable due to kids/time/dogs/life/constant art projects, let's set some guidelines.
There is no way to undo the actions of your past. But if you do the work of mourning for what you and your children have lost, you will find yourself more available to fully enjoy the life you are living with your children now.
Pinterest, you may look happy and colorful, but you are really a cold and heartless artistically-designed, birthday-cake fueled demon. You have taught me that I suck in areas of life that I didn't even know existed until I met you.
I see the fury in your eyes as I roll slowly past, looking for a parking spot. I see your rawness and it shocks me, not because I'm judging you, but because it's all too familiar, that look, that feeling. I've been there -- believe me.
The beauty of motherhood is in the folds and creases of our lives, the grimaces and tantrums, the moments when we have to grit our teeth to get through, when we pound on windows and yell and scream and demand better of each other and ourselves.
Much has been said about the Myth of the Supermom. That nonexistent female who does it all and looks good doing it. As moms, we hear about this woman, we know she's a myth, and yet we wonder... does she really exist?
I step out in front of the full-length mirror and lather my entire body in cocoa butter lotion, staring at the unrecognizable shape in front of me. I find three small stretch marks underneath my belly button and feel guilty for even noticing.