May 082012
 

The main reason that I started this blog was to say all the things that you are not supposed to say about parenthood. Like, “Hey, being a mom isn’t all smiles and rainbows.  It can be shitty sometimes (literally) but that doesn’t mean it isn’t amazing.” Or “Sometimes I fantasize about just one night ALL. BY. MYSELF.” Or “I love my daughter but sometimes she makes me so crazy I want to scream.”  I believe that the things that no one ever says about parenthood are the things that people most need to hear.  Not to scare people or dissuade them from having kids, but to let people know that if they feel this way they are not crazy or horrible people… or even worse, horrible parents.

Motherhood can be very isolating.  A new mother spends most of her time inside the confines of her house caring for her new baby, and that is just the beginning. As a new mom, you often feel isolated from your friends who don’t have kids because their lives are now so different from your own. For example, they actually get to sleep for longer than 45 minutes in a row, shower regularly, and put a cohesive thought together.  During those first few months it’s hard to find something in common with someone who doesn’t smell like baby spit-up.  It’s understandable.  But sometimes you even feel isolated from your friends who do have kids. They seem to do it so effortlessly that you are sure that they will think ill of you if you reveal your own fears and frustrations.  You also can feel isolated from your partner because he doesn’t understand what you are going through. How could he?  He’s not gestating what feels like the spawn of Pele.  His body hasn’t undergone an extreme, and mostly unpleasant, transformation (except for the sympathy weight he may or may not have gained due to a pregnant wife who may or may not have forced him to eat at places like Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles.  Sorry honey.)  He doesn’t wake up every two hours to let a small human suckle his nipple until it bleeds – and if he does, think about finding a new partner.  To a mother, especially a new one, it can seem like no one in the world could possibly understand the way you are feeling… and it can make you feel very alone.

The worst part is that often the people who should be supporting you, the ones who DO understand what you are going through – the moms – are the ones who can make you feel the worst.  We hear a lot about the bullying of kids. We see movies about mean girls. But what about Mean Moms?

You know the type (especially if you live in LA).  They prance around the parks, the coffee shops, and the Mommy and Me classes with their perfect hair, perfect make-up, clothes that are somehow free of spit-up and shoes that actually match (not just the outfit, but each other… a near impossible feat on 2 hours of sleep.)  They talk about their kids as though they are perfect and about motherhood as though it is easiest thing in the world. They look at you with judgement in their eyes if you so much as hint that you are tired, frustrated, scared or otherwise human.

Mean Moms don’t necessarily SAY anything mean.  Often it’s more about what they don’t say.  Like the fact that her baby woke up 12 times last night, and damn, is she tired.  (Instead, she enjoys every extra minute she gets to spend with her daughter, even if it’s at 3 AM. ) Or the fact that she is worried that her 15-month-old hasn’t said his first word yet.  (Talking is so 2011.  She is working on signing. All the celebrities are doing it.)  Or that she is having trouble losing that last 10 lbs of baby weight. (It’s actually 10 lbs. of pure muscle from her personal training sessions!)  Or that she wishes her perfect husband took more interest in their new baby. (He’s working really hard to pay for that expensive stroller.)

I could go on and on, but instead I am just going to say this – Ladies, stop it with the Mean Mom act.  Leave it for the teeny-boppers, who don’t yet know any better.  Stop trying to pretend that you have everything figured out, that life is perfect, and that you are perfect.  Reach out to other women, or men, who seem like they need help.  And if you need help, ask for it.  Many people don’t realize that you could possibly feel alone while spending 24 hours a day with a new baby, but the truth is that you can feel more alone than you ever have before.  Tell a friend and let her help you, even if all you need is an ear. (But if this friend offers to help with dirty diapers or laundry… marry this friend and don’t look back.) But the most important thing to remember is that YOU ARE NOT ALONE.  You are not the only one feeling hopeless or clueless or nameless.  You are not the only one who sometimes can’t remember why they thought this whole parenting thing was a good idea.  I promise that you are not the only one.  And I promise it will get better.  And if you spot a Mean Mom, let me know, and I promise to kick her ass.  At least, in my mind.  I am a total badass in my mind.

May 052012
 

If you didn’t before, check out my first featured article in Natural Child Magazine, and get your sexy back… or at least brush your teeth once in a while!

“I’m sexy and I know it!”

Ok, so maybe this is the song currently stuck in my head (curse you LMFAO and your catchy lyrics,) NOT the phrase that I am most likely to think while looking into the mirror.  As a working mom of a ten-month-old baby, whose wardrobe usually consists of a variety of faded black yoga pants and whose highlights have grown so far out that they are now back in (ombre is so hot right now,) I desperately need to find my sexy.  The only problem:  I don’t know where I lost it.

I used to be hot once, if I do say so myself.  Back in those days, I used to spend hours primping with my girlfriends. Then we would strut around the bar, preening like peacocks, daring any man to talk to us. Now-a-days I usually slink around with zero make-up and my hair in a dirty bun, praying that no one notices me, or worse… recognizes me. While I am married with a baby, and definitely not trying to snag a man, I miss that confident, sexy creature I used to be – or at least think I was. My problem is not that no one finds me sexy… my problem is that I don’t find myself sexy.

So what is the answer?  How do you get your sexy back when you have no idea where to start looking? What I am not going to do is give you a list of “full-proof” tips guaranteed to make you feel sexier or make your sex life better.  Every person is different and everyone’s likes, tastes and limits are different too (and discovering what yours are is a joy that I would never take from you!)  But what I will do is give you one piece of advice… start making love to yourself.  No, I’m not talking about this in the literal way, although that might be a big step for many women,  what I am talking about is making time to do the things you love and that make you feel good about yourself.

Make regular appointments at the hairdresser, waxer or both. Hit the gym. Take the extra five minutes to put on some mascara and lip-gloss.  Take a bath, take a class (brains are sexy too!) or take 15 minutes to meditate.  Go buy some sexy new lingerie that fits the body you have right now, not the body you hope to have after six months of starving yourself. Whatever it is that makes you feel like the smart, sexy, beautiful woman that you are. I promise that she’s in there somewhere!

And most importantly, stop hiding out and slinking around. Hold your head up high and strut around the grocery store,  office and your bedroom.  You ARE sexy, and if you know it, chances are the world does too.

May 042012
 

“I believe in making the world safe for our children. But not our children’s children, because I don’t think children should be having sex.”

Jack Handy

Wow.  Mr. Handy was a philosopher and a philanthropist.  Is there anything the man can’t do?!

May 022012
 

As some of you know, I have been a part of a wonderful magazine, Natural Child World, for a while.  NCW is a parenting magazine unlike anything else that is currently out there.  It has a great eco message, a real voice that doesn’t take itself too seriously or talk to parents like they are the 5-year-olds,  fashion and design articles worthy of a coffee table, and some pretty great features… including one I am particularly fond of.  I am proud to announce that my blog, The Good, The Bad, and The Saggy is going to be a regular feature in Natural Child World Magazine! It will be, as my blog is, a realistic and somewhat comedic (hey, I try) look at motherhood.  Although there will most likely be a few less F bombs than some of my blog posts.  You can find the magazine at Whole Foods, Barnes & Noble and other stores, as well as online at:  http://naturalchildworld.com/

As always, thanks for your support.  Without further adieu (Now that my blog is in a magazine I am totally going to start using fancy words like adieu)  here is my first The Good, The Bad, and The Saggy feature in the May/June issue of Natural Child World magazine:

Getting Your Sexy Back

“I’m sexy and I know it!”

Ok, so maybe this is the song currently stuck in my head (curse you LMFAO and your catchy lyrics,) NOT the phrase that I am most likely to think while looking into the mirror.  As a working mom of a ten-month-old baby, whose wardrobe usually consists of a variety of faded black yoga pants and whose highlights have grown so far out that they are now back in (ombre is so hot right now,) I desperately need to find my sexy.  The only problem:  I don’t know where I lost it.

I used to be hot once, if I do say so myself.  Back in those days, I used to spend hours primping with my girlfriends. Then we would strut around the bar, preening like peacocks, daring any man to talk to us. Now-a-days I usually slink around with zero make-up and my hair in a dirty bun, praying that no one notices me, or worse… recognizes me. While I am married with a baby, and definitely not trying to snag a man, I miss that confident, sexy creature I used to be – or at least think I was. My problem is not that no one finds me sexy… my problem is that I don’t find myself sexy.

So what is the answer?  How do you get your sexy back when you have no idea where to start looking? What I am not going to do is give you a list of “full-proof” tips guaranteed to make you feel sexier or make your sex life better.  Every person is different and everyone’s likes, tastes and limits are different too (and discovering what yours are is a joy that I would never take from you!)  But what I will do is give you one piece of advice… start making love to yourself.  No, I’m not talking about this in the literal way, although that might be a big step for many women,  what I am talking about is making time to do the things you love and that make you feel good about yourself.

Make regular appointments at the hairdresser, waxer or both. Hit the gym. Take the extra five minutes to put on some mascara and lip-gloss.  Take a bath, take a class (brains are sexy too!) or take 15 minutes to meditate.  Go buy some sexy new lingerie that fits the body you have right now, not the body you hope to have after six months of starving yourself. Whatever it is that makes you feel like the smart, sexy, beautiful woman that you are. I promise that she’s in there somewhere!

And most importantly, stop hiding out and slinking around. Hold your head up high and strut around the grocery store,  office and your bedroom.  You ARE sexy, and if you know it, chances are the world does too.

 

Apr 302012
 

Some people say that motherhood is the toughest job in the world, but that is just absurd.  There are definitely harder jobs out there.    Like Sherpas.  Imagine having to schlep around an ungodly amount of someone else’s belongings!  Or how about assistants for crazy, unreasonable bosses… the kind of bosses who seem almost incapable of doing anything on their own, who often have total meltdowns for no apparent reason, and who, on their best days, throw random things at your head.  That job is definitely tough!  Or what about the poor people who have to drain port-o-potties or clean toilets for a living… the people who literally have to clean up someone else’s shit every single day.

Wait a second…

Well, motherhood may in fact be the toughest job in the world… but it definitely has the best bonus structure.

Apr 282012
 

Shel Silverstein has been my absolute favorite since I was just a wee nerd, sneakily reading books with a flashlight after my bedtime.  This poem always makes me tear up.  If it doesn’t make you almost cry… you are dead inside.  You should just give up and try out for the Real World.

“The Little Boy and the Old Man”

Said the little boy, “Sometimes I drop my spoon.”
Said the old man, “I do that too.”
The little boy whispered, “I wet my pants.”
I do that too,” laughed the little old man.
Said the little boy, “I often cry.”
The old man nodded, “So do I.”
But worst of all,” said the boy, “it seems
Grown-ups don’t pay attention to me.”
And he felt the warmth of a wrinkled old hand.
I know what you mean,” said the little old man.” 

~Shel Silverstein
Apr 272012
 

After two weeks of having family here… all together…in our house…in every single bed and pretty much any surface that would support a body… and after two months of planning my daughter’s first birthday party which culminated in 75 people partying in our already overstuffed house, the dust is finally beginning to settle and I am finally beginning to breathe.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my parents and my in-laws, and I really do enjoy having them here.  I love seeing how much they love my daughter and seeing how much my daughter loves them.  Truly, nothing gives me more joy than to be with my family… except when I take NyQuil and have those very vivid and quite graphic dreams about Ryan Gosling.

That being said, with a house full of people it was a bit hard to relax.  It’s tough to find the alone time I so desperately need when there is always someone everywhere you go.  Plus, I spent the past two weeks on my very best behavior… shopping, cooking, entertaining, smiling, laughing and cleaning, cleaning, cleaning…  I swear that dirty dishes have been breeding in my sink.  But even more exhausting than the constant cleaning is the constant role-playing.  There is nothing more tiring to me than pretending to be someone I am not.  Even if it is just a slightly better version of myself.

Even though I know that my family loves and respects me, for some reason I feel the need to prove how good of a wife, friend, host, entertainer, and most importantly mother I am.  And man, am I tired.  I spent nearly two weeks treading lightly for fear of offending someone.  I scurried around in a whirlwind of activity for fear of someone discovering the truth… that I am not as clean, organized, friendly, together (ha) or constantly happy as I pretend to be.  I scuttled around following orders to get my daughter more clothes, less clothes, different clothes, and to retrieve more water to stave off dehydration or more food to stave off starvation.  I alternated between letting her cry it out so I don’t seen weak, and picking her up at first wail so I don’t seem cold.  I bit my tongue at unsolicited advice, and nodded my head at tips that I don’t intend to follow.  But really,  who am I trying to fool?  Surely no one who knows me thinks that I am anything close to perfect, so why try to keep up an appearance that mostly exists in my own mind?

After having 24 hours to clear my head, some things have become begrudgingly apparent.  While advice is sometimes (ok often) annoying, it is given to help… not to hurt.  It is not given to question my judgement and certainly not to imply that I don’t know what the hell I am doing.  And even if it does imply that I don’t always know what I am doing, the truth is… I don’t.  Mostly I am just muddling through, figuring things out through trial and error, and error, and error.  And, yes, I spend a lot of time pretending that I know what I am doing.  So actually, I could use some advice… even if I don’t want to hear it. Maybe if I stop spending so much energy pretending to be perfect, I could spend a bit more time on really trying to be better.

So, my beloved family and friends (and not so beloved random strangers who feel it’s your duty to share your opinions despite wearing dirty, fuzzy slippers in public.  true story.) while I can’t promise that I will always take your advice, I promise that I will try to accept it in the loving spirit it was intended.  I promise to try to listen to the wisdom you have to share, but also to question you when I don’t agree with what you have to say, instead of just nodding politely.   And at the end of the day, I promise that my husband and I will raise our daughter the best way we know how… because that’s exactly the example that our parents set for us.  Most of all, thank you all for loving us and our daughter.  Thanks for your advice, even if I don’t always take it.  And thanks for your presence in our lives… although maybe we all don’t have to be present at once for a little while.  At least until next year…

Apr 232012
 

For my daughter’s birthday she received lots of “toys”, like a changing table for her baby doll complete with safety strap, wipes and diapers; a toy stove and other cooking utensils, boxes that you put things into etc.  She also loves to play with the broom, dustbuster, laundry basket etc.  Her favorite toys all just happen to be things I dread… cooking, cleaning, changing diapers, laundry… basically any kind of household chores.  At what point do toys become chores?  Am I missing the fun here?  Do these activities become chores simply because we must do them?  I stared to think that  if I approached chores with a childlike sense of fun and adventure perhaps they could be fun again.  So began to dance around as I swept the floor and to fold clothes with whimsical abandon.  I literally began to whistle as I worked… then I remembered that I don’t know how to whistle and that my daughter also enjoys eating rocks, ripping up toilet paper, and spinning around until she falls down.  Ok, back to the laundry.  Sigh…

Apr 222012
 

“We are all a little weird and life’s a little weird, and when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love.”

-Dr Seuss

Oh man, I love me some Dr Seuss.  He just gets it…