In a New York Moment

What is life?

I suppose it’s a series of events, memories, shared experiences, solitary moments. A conglomerate, really. Some etched in our minds for all eternity. Some fleeting, which we live, and ultimately forget, lost to the recesses of a deep space within.

Way past her bed time at 9 PM, I found myself walking Harper home in a carrier, holding her tiny little hand, singing “Sweet Baby James.” Hyperaware of everything in that moment, I was reflecting on the day, and my present place in life, all at the same time.

I had snuck her out of school earlier than usual because I had broken my promise that on Mother’s Day we would “get our nails done.” She wanted yellow nails, and what kind of mother would I be if I didn’t deliver on this two-year-old’s dream?

So we walked to a nail salon. She picked yellow. And then this little one got her first manicure. While the manicurist was gentle with her delicate, teeny fingers, she kept peering back at me. Her wide, kind eyes gave me hints of insight into her beautiful mind. She was quiet and polite. And I prayed this would be one of those moments that would stay with me forever.

Next on the Mommy-Harper adventure, we were “meeting Mommy’s friends.” (Though a little while later, I realized she thought we were “eating Mommy’s friends.” I promptly corrected her.)

So I carefully strapped her into the carrier, and shared with her the universal “I just had a manicure” sign. We then headed west and walked to Chelsea Market to “eat Mommy’s friends.” We talked. We laughed. I found her ticklish spot. It was so special. I would catch her looking into my eyes. If only I could ask her what she was thinking.

We met up with friends who have been in my life for 20-plus years. These days, as life dictates, we don’t talk or see each other as often as we did in our younger days of NYC life. But we caught up. We talked moving, and babies, and gossip, and memories. Harper told them I broke her out of school. They bought her ice cream, donuts and lollipops. We said we’d do it again soon. But we all know what that means. Harper and I loved every moment (besides the twelve trips to the potty) but especially the ice cream. She didn’t want to go. I didn’t either, but everything must come to an end.

It was late and Harper needed to get to sleep. I should have jumped in a cab, but the night was so perfect. The energy buzzing around was palpable. So I strapped her on me again and I just started walking. We passed a couple of guys with pizza and beer; A young couple holding hands walking towards the unknown; A young woman on her phone recounting her previous evening’s date; Construction workers ending their day, hard hats tilted ever so slightly; An older couple meandering aimlessly; Two big, big guys walking a teeny, tiny chihuahua. Harper was starting to drift so I began to sing to her. And then I felt her little body vibrating on mine. She was singing the harmony of “Sweet Baby James” right along with me. She asked me if I wanted to hold her hand. Of course I did. We laid our hands on my chest. She kept stealing glimpses of her nails. I just kept walking. Though the day was long and she was heavy, I wasn’t ready for this moment to never happen again. I asked her what I did to get so lucky to be her mom. Her response? “I love you, Mommy.” We kept walking. I kept singing. We passed a woman waiting for Thai food take-out. Across from her was a cab driver preparing for the night shift with his bodega-brown-paper-bagged-egg-sandwich and blue, to-go-cup of coffee. The scents wafting around were so decidedly New York City. As I crossed First Avenue, ready to head into Peter Cooper Village, her body got a little heavier. She had succumbed to the night. In that second, I realized how truly, truly lucky I am. All the worries about having no salary (or insurance), and all the questions (How will we make it all work? Who has three kids in the city? Why are we still in the city?) They all left my mind in that moment. Everything is right. It’s as perfect as possible. This is precisely where we need to be right now. This family is being raised in the best city in the world. And even with all the uncertainty, all the questions, all the unknowns, I know this to be true:

There is nothing else in the world like a New York moment.

When There’s No Time Left For Regret

Life is full of BIG decisions. Though, too often we are frozen, unable to take that first step to make them. Whether it’s fear of the unknown, golden handcuffs, risk aversion, finances, responsibility. All legitimate – but anchors, nonetheless.

Comfort (can?) equate to complacent. It takes a lot to make life altering decisions. It is not for the faint of heart.

In life we are frequently waiting for something, a sign, a raise, the kid, the house – the life we dream about.

The problem with waiting, is that life passes us by, and we can’t fully appreciate the life we’re in.

I’ve had my struggles. My cross to bear. But recently in life my biggest complaint was my solid job, that paid me well, provided my family incredible insurance – wasn’t fulfilling anymore. I know, some people (reading this) could think – she doesn’t get to bitch about that, that’s quite the problem to have. I’m not looking for anyone to commiserate – I’m simply now aware – that though things may look good on paper, sometimes it’s worth picking that paper up and looking beneath it – or maybe even ripping it to shreds.

It’s so cliche – but I think it’s worth considering – on your deathbed, when you look back, will you feel like you truly led a life you’re proud of? When there’s no time left for regret – will you be content?

My answer, was no.

This actually isn’t a post about leaving my job. It’s about what happened AFTER I made the decision. And, granted, it’s been a total of 28 days – so I’m hardly tenured on the topic. But, it’s incredible how the universe listens.

The day after I told my job of almost 6 years – a job that was a career move – my time had come – I received a call that both of my babies were going to begin the evaluation process for early intervention. I would need to be available about one afternoon a week, for the next month.

From there I would need to go on meetings with the state, then once approved, meet with the therapists. Then finally be available once the therapies began. This simply would not have been possible in my former life (of one month ago). I will need to be fully present for my kids.

None of this is to say – it’s smooth sailing. I have no idea how we’ll pay for daycare, insurance, lunch.

But what I know – is that it will all work out – I am as certain of this as I am the sun will rise.

As I build a new company with my business partner the focus is paramount. Our priorities and mission are entirely aligned. We want to have the best possible motherhood journey for us, as well as for the women we’re working with who are either just starting out on theirs, or deep in the trenches.

I left all my babies home last night with a babysitter for the first time ever. I had to work. Nathan had a show. It was time. And we did it. At 1am I woke up to the oldest puking in her bed. It lasted all night. All. Night. Stripped sheets. Baths. No sleep. I kept her home from school today. Because I can. Because she needs me. Because I need this. Maybe it was just a coincidence. Maybe it was something more. Don’t know. Don’t care. But, another thing I would have had to struggle with, in my past life.

The juggling act.

That first step to make a change is the hardest. No debating that. But the freedom, and weightlessness that comes with that step is so freeing I can’t quite put it to words. And sure, there will be bumps in the road. There’s uncertainty ahead. But I’m trusting that at the end of (my) days, I will know with absolute certainty that I did exactly what I was supposed to do, at this moment in time, and will be completely at peace with the life I chose.

Accept the risk.

Make the choice.

Take that step.

Live your life.

There’s no time left for regret.

A Picture Is Worth…Very Few Words, These Days.

Today Nathan and I were released from the clutches of six tiny hands (and 8 pretty small paws). It had been some time. We were offered an opportunity. Four hours of freedom!

What would we do?

Well, we would suck, is what we would do.

Without fail. Every. Single. Time. We are given a break, a day, a night, an afternoon an anything. We fuck it up.

We had no plan before we left (never do) and it took us an extra hour to actually leave. So our four hours quickly became three.

Movie? No, the point is we need to hang, talk, catch up.

Dumbo, for art? Maybe, but where would we eat?

UWS for the park? Nah. Just too far.

Raw Bar? Yes! Exactly what we want.

But where?

One place was indoors (way too beautiful out to waste it being inside). Next place didn’t open till 4. Other place isn’t serving food till May 2 (because, of course it’s not.) Taking travel into the equation – once we would make it to half the places we’d have to turn right around.

Finally got a reco for a spot Downtown, on the Water. Perrrfect.

But. Nah. It wasn’t. Obviously.

Riddled with tourists. “Only table open” was next to the garbage.

We bailed. Called an audible and…wandered aimlessly, because – well, that’s just us. We now had 2 hours left. Of course we start getting pissy, blaming each other, feeling dumb for wasting the opportunity. Blech.

We called some places. Nothing was working. We were walking the wrong direction. Our day was shitty. Which was really just such a bummer.

Then (hallelujah!) Stone St.! Tables outdoors. Liquor flowing freely. This was where we needed to be.

The next hour and a half was actually pretty perfect. We got a table outside. Had some oysters (success!) the rest was fried (whatever). Then we went around the corner to the bar voted “best cocktail bar in the world”.

Dead Rabbit.

Head upstairs. They do NOT disappoint.

Before we left, we had to take a picture. Prior to babies we were great about capturing us. Then when one babe joined the party there were fewer pics, but we still had some family shots. I can probably count on four fingers how many pictures we’ve been in together these past 7 months.

So, we got our smiley happy lovey couple shot – and I was thrilled.

We had about 25 minutes left. Before our window shut on this episode of “what it feels like to just be a couple again,” I planned to post the picture.

And then it all went to shit.

We got in a massive fight over the stupid car and directions. I mean. So so dumb. We were so pissed we weren’t even talking to each other. We killed 20 minutes huffing around from street corner to street corner avoiding eye contact and knowing the other was definitely wrong – and obviously the other totally in the right. Pretty sure some F Bombs were throw.

This entire post simply came about because I wanted to post the cute picture of us. But when I got right down to it. Posting it would have been dishonest. We were smiling here. But we were very much not smiling seven minutes later. I had already edited it to make it (me) look better. I cropped out half my arm because I’ve just not come to terms with my post pregnancy body, still. So what you see isn’t the whole picture. Literally and figuratively.

Is it ever? Really?

Long story short, I’m calling bullshit on me.

And I’m calling it on you. Let’s try to be real out there. Oh yeah and next time you leave the house, make a god damn reservation.

Always The Third Wheel

It’s funny, I was laying in bed (really the couch) this morning (“this morning” defined by 2-5am when either someone woke up screaming, I had to pump, or some other fun activity) – feeling uninspired. I want to keep writing, but the mood really needs to move me in order to do so. I can’t just pick up a “pen” and start.

I thought about recent occurrences with one baby or another – none felt funny enough, or heart wrenching enough, that they’d be worthy of putting pen to paper.

I’d already touched on all things job/career/dream related. I’ve done the “amazing husband” post. I felt like I might just need to take a brief hiatus until inspiration struck.

And then it did.

I write a lot with humor, or babies, but if I get to the heart of it, I don’t really write about me. Sure, me as a mom, me as a wife who doesn’t clean enough. But not truly, deeply about me.

So this one, is, about me.

I’ve been lucky in life to meet incredible people. I have so many friends and acquaintances, that I lose track. Friends and family say I “collect people”. This is not intended to be a popularity contest. Quite the contrary in fact. The joys of having so many friends – is that you can always be in touch with someone about something.

But if I’m being really honest, it can be really lonely. It means, it’s hard to have the “best friend” people always talk about.

In my life I’ve been a part of many social circles, hell I’ve created most of them. And though, maybe I’m at the epicenter – it’s kind of like everything is floating around me.

I’m not blaming anyone really – I’m sure I’ve done it to myself. But throughout my life, I’ve constantly found myself in friendships with two other people, and am always the third wheel. We may all be close. But they are ALWAYS just a little closer. I inevitably find out after the fact, that plans were made, and I wasn’t included. Conversations were happening, and I wasn’t a part of them. And if really listening to myself, it makes my heart hurt. I’m a friendly person. I’m a social person. Believe I try to not let anyone feel left out. Go out of my way to include and connect people. If you’re reading this, you probably wouldn’t have imagined this about me. But I’m in a constant state of feeling left out.

I’m sure if I brought this up to friends they would offer up, oh we didn’t think you’d be free because…pregnant/102 babies/haven’t slept/assumed you couldn’t make it. But I wish people would let me make that decision. If that’s even the case. Maybe they simply don’t think (want?) to include me.

Or, and maybe I haven’t gotten to the heart of it – but maybe there’s something about me that isn’t best friend material.

I’m certain there are things I’ve done in life that have gotten me here. Instead of saying Yes to everything, I have been inclined to say No. I don’t always put myself out there, often times prefer the comfort of my own home to a party/bar/girl’s night out. So people around me get closer, and I, get sleep or TV (or at least used to, now I just get peed on – and not even in “that kind of way”).

And though all the above may be true, I also get sad when people choose everyone else (anyone else?) over me.

Granted I don’t want to be friends – or best friends with everyone – but those I’m close with, I wonder why they are closer with that one other person – and choose not to be, with me? The reality is, I might actually say no to the invite, but I’d like to be asked.

Maybe I don’t offer open conversation or invites to friends – though I think I do. At the end of the day, it just makes me think people like other people more than me. And that’s just a shitty feeling. I understand this is life – and of course this is going to happen. But it’s astounding how in my entire life I continue to find myself in this role as the odd (wo)man out.

I’m not unhappy. Hardly. I’m ecstatic about where I am in life. But this is a recurring theme that reared it’s head again this morning, and made me realize I’ve never fully processed it out loud. I’ve repressed it for sure. But ultimately – it returns.

So I guess this a post to just reinforce that everything you see isn’t the whole story. There is ALWAYS more. And just once in my life – outside of my marriage, of course – I wish someone (someone I would want too) would want me as their person, their second wheel, not an afterthought.

What Is It You Plan To Do With Your One Wild And Precious Life?

There has been precisely one decision I have made in my life that I did not second guess.

That was marrying Nathan.

Never had I been more certain about anything, ever. Before and after that – my entire life has/had been a series of questions. Did I order the wrong salad for lunch? Should I wear different socks? Is this the time to have a child? From the most insignificant to the most monumental – they’ve all been questioned; I even returned my first wedding dress.

I constantly wonder what it would be like to be 100% confident in something.

This past week I re-learned that feeling.

After my metamorphosis to motherhood everything simply changed, as life does. My passions and desires shifted; what was once of the utmost importance became less significant and what changed my identity became my number one priority.

Before Harper was born I built (what began as) an online community for new moms having babies around the same time, to connect with each other.

It can be lonely.

But what I learned – it absolutely doesn’t need to be.

This group of Winter Moms and Winter Babies became my world for the first six months of my child’s life (and far, far beyond). We bonded, had each other, our babies became friends – and we had a kick ass maternity leave filled with picnics on the lawn, mid day drinks at bars, and just someone else to talk to about all the stuff no one tells you about. Or simply a walk to Buy Buy Baby, because why not buy more unnecessary shit for our kids.

Some of these moms are my closest friends. And our kids will be friends “forever”.

It was a saving grace to so many, and so hugely meaningful on a deeper level, for me.

After seeing this new community thrive, and the positive impact it had – I realized the infertility journey, too, could be an isolating experience – and these strong, strong women needed their own support network.

I created a virtual group called Warriors (no, you can’t find it, it’s secret – but if you or someone you know could use this group, please connect.) Two+ years later, this, now, international group has become a safe space for so many women who are on a journey. Some of these women have become life long friends – others sit quietly behind the screen and learn from those who came before them. Some stay anonymous – some attend gatherings. But the incredibly kind words I’ve heard from these women show that the need for a female support system is something lacking in the every day.

I kept imagining where there were pockets that needed to be filled and tried to fill them. I created a twin group, a post fertility treatment group, then a new 2017 baby group. There were more, but that’s not the point. The point is – through my transformation I learned what makes me tick, what now inspires me – and what truly makes me happy, my inner most passion. And that’s helping women and their journey to motherhood.

Women who are on a path. Women who are looking for support. Women who need guidance or resources. A shoulder. An ear. A community. A drink. A night out. A friend.

All too often we compete with one another.

I’m looking at you.

And me.

But we just don’t need to. We need to lift each other up. Help each other. A fire has been ignited in this new empowered generation and I am proud to be a part of it.

So, tomorrow, will be my last day at my job. A place I’ve called home for 5 and a half years. A space that has seen me through so much. That helped me grow, flourish, and find myself.

I will take this hat off tomorrow afternoon, I will leave midtown, take a deep breath and know that beyond the shadow of a doubt – I made the absolute, unequivocal – right decision for me, at this time in my life.

This will be the second time in my life that I am 100% certain.

As of Monday I will put a new hat on. I likely won’t shower, and will be in comfy clothes – but a new hat nonetheless.

I won’t stress getting the kids to daycare at 7:30am, maybe I’ll even stay cuddled in bed with them a little while longer.

I then won’t have to rush and worry at 5:28pm about how the hell I’m going to get back downtown to all 3 kids and get them out of school by 6 on the dot to not incur the $1 a minute late fee. In fact, maybe I’ll pick them up early and take them to the playground, a music class, a bar – whatever!

These are unchartered waters and I could not be more excited to face them.

Who knows, maybe I’ll go…dare I say it…to a spin class after 3 years??? (Probably not, but definitely a Russian Bath trip or two).

And the icing on this beautiful carvel cake that’s covered in Cadbury Creme Eggs – my friend and I had a dream, a vision. We talked about it the last weekend in January. And then we went into hyper overdrive action my last month of maternity leave.

We want to create a community among moms in NYC. It’s a 360 degree offering to women who are on their journey to motherhood, through pregnancy, after pregnancy – with a new baby, a toddler. And beyond. All day, every day – in my free time – I meet total strangers on Facebook or in a coffee shop – who ask me advice on infertility, or how the hell to raise twins and a toddler – or other things that I’m highly unqualified to answer. But, I welcome the new friend with open arms. I listen. I share. We talk. And a new relationship is born.

Mostly people are looking for companionship and conversation.

Now I get to do that all day, every day.

And I cannot fucking wait.

This door is closing. But a beautiful set of floor to ceiling glass doors, overlooking the most gorgeous scenery, with the sound of crashing waves and light pouring through are opening in front of me and I could not be more ready to take that first step.

Goodbye for now.

OOO.

No Longer a Catepillar

I just ended my longest relationship.

The courtship began while I was in my early 30s. I gave to it, all of me. She taught me about myself. Five and a half years later so much has changed and it was time for me to welcome that reality.

It was time for me to say goodbye.

She treated me well. Offered me a home, a place to grow. To learn. To make mistakes. To find my strengths and weaknesses. She taught me life lessons. I stumbled a few times. She picked me up. She ushered me into my next stage of life. She saw me through a new relationship. An engagement. A marriage. Infertility. In fact, she paid for the treatments. Both times. She provided me the means to create new lives. She was there for the birth. A metamorphosis.

My metamorphosis.

She gave me the time to find myself after the greatest shift my life had seen. Then through another pregnancy. This one was harder – but she supported me and gave me the space I needed to heal. And then through the birth of my last babies. She gave me a home and friends during all of these life milestones.

She taught me patience. And perspective.

And then I returned to her. Hat in hand. This time, though, something was different. My love, desire and passion for her evaded me. There had been a much deeper shift. She was the same.

I was not.

My time had come to walk away. To thank her for building me up. For nurturing me. For giving me friendships and teachings. For helping me mature. It was not easy. A break up never is. You question yourself. You question the reason. You look at the big picture. And at the moment. Ultimately you just must decide what’s best for you. I shared with her, the news yesterday. She wasn’t surprised. Hoped it wouldn’t be so soon. But understood. Things were different.

I was different.

You can’t hold on to a butterfly.

Gratitude

I think the most eye opening thing about having children, is how everything else in your life shifts.

It’s almost like your past life never happened.

I’m only 2 years deep into this whole thing, and as I scroll back through pictures of pre-babies, I’m reminded life wasn’t always spit up and poop – but almost can’t even remember those days.

I caught up with an old friend recently, we hadn’t had quality time together in ages – and we reminisced about the good old days.

College – yikes.

Post College NYC – even yikes-ier.

If I attempted a fraction of what I once did in a week then, now, I would be dead. It’s truly incredible the phases our lives take on, with us in the passenger’s seat.

I imagine I will not be alone in thinking or saying this, but what might get neglected the most, once you have children, is the thing that brought them into this world.

When I met Nathan, that moment – I knew, everything was about to change. There was absolutely, unequivocally, something different about him, about us.

Maybe he didn’t know, but I knew – he was the one I was going to be with and create a life with.

Now, I am not one to believe in ‘meant to be” – in the esoteric sense – but after simply talking to him, I knew I would love him.

Our courtship was a relatively quick one – met online, first date two weeks later, dated a year, engaged/moved in and married within the next year. But I appreciated every day in that brief dating experience. I had waited an insanely long time for the right guy, for me. And he was it. He fit absolutely none of my long list of criteria.

And thank god he didn’t.

Rarely do I have trouble finding words – but around this, I seem to. Nathan is my everything. And I hate to say it, but since this brood expanded, I believe I haven’t said it enough, haven’t appreciated him enough.

Relationships often work best when there are complementary personalities within them. Beyond the shadow of a doubt, that is us.

And it works…

For the most part, of course.

The choice to have children is a big one – your life changes – entirely – and there is no version of going back. The quick trips out of the city. The long walks, holding hands, aimlessly. The vacations. The sleep. Just the two of you. They all become fond, albeit distant, memories while scrolling through pictures.

Do I regret anything in this current life? No. Do I wish there were more hours in a day where just the two of us, could be just the two of us, again? Absolutely. Will it happen at some point in the future? I’ve heard it does – though from this vantage point, I’m not sure I see that light at the end of the tunnel.

Along with my recent near miss, came a new found appreciation and sense of gratitude. I adore my husband like no one I have ever encountered. He is a good, good person. He is kind and thoughtful, he is loving and warm. He is moral and honest. He is creative and smart. Dedicated and loving. Funny and inquisitive. He has amazing ethic and an even more incredible heart. And supports me being me entirely. But most importantly he is a true partner and the most adoring father.

He doesn’t ever meet me half way, he goes way, way, way beyond. He is the strength to all my weaknesses.

I am not here to brag. Hardly. We have a TON of shit we should be working on. But ain’t no one got time for that. We had an incredible year of therapy right at the outset of our marriage because (I believe) everyone should. Two different people with two different communication styles and many different approaches to life and what matters. Get that crap sorted out at the beginning so you can start on solid ground. (And if not at the beginning, find another time. It’s so important. Ok, I’ll get off my therapy soapbox now).

I know there are more things, ahem, we should be doing, as a married couple. And I know we will again. But right now, we are raising the next generation, of good, kind (hopefully!) humans. I can only hope that when their time comes to begin their true adventure of life, we can be role models, in our marriage, so they too, seek out the right person for them – to build something beautiful and spectacular together.

I hope they learn, it is always worth the wait.

My final quote in my wedding vows was by Anne Bancroft, on her marriage to Mel Brooks:

“Whenever I hear his key in the door, I think, o goody, the party is about to begin.”

Nathan, if you’re reading this, I owe you everything, I do not take any of it for granted, I love you, I thank you, there will be vacations one day again, you will sleep through the night at some point. You are what keeps my heart beating…and no, I still haven’t done the dishes.

Appreciate The Rainbows

Last Week I got hit by a car.

Obviously I’m fine if I’m sitting here writing this.

But, yeah a goddamn car backed into me. We were both at fault I suppose, though I did have the light. Truthfully that’s irrelevant. In the grand scheme of things – getting hit by a car ends in one of two ways.

I walked away. And walked towards something, in that moment.

What you hear – or have seen in movies – is all true. Everything comes rushing over you.

Perhaps its the adrenaline, maybe just the overwhelming emotion of what could be – or could have been.

What I know now to be true, is that nothing matters in life besides the moment.

We are always waiting for something. The weekend. The raise. The house. But rarely do we actually take the time, in the moment, to appreciate what is immediately in front of us.

I’m hardly trivializing dreams and wishes and wanting. I went through infertility treatments so I absolutely appreciate desires and disappointments.

But even in the hardest of times. There still are the moments. The hot coffees. The new Love. The first day of summer. The puppy noses. The beach. The mountains.

It’s so easy – I’m the biggest offender – to get swept up in ‘what the future holds.’ But that second a car strikes you, you realize that the future is uncertain. And planning and wishing too much probably won’t allow you to live the absolute best life you can live – right now.

I don’t suggest getting hit by a car. It really sucks. But I do recommend sitting. Breathing. Meditating. Whatever you need to do – to ground you for a moment. To make it all come into focus. To make it all clear.

Also, maybe, and this is me saying it ‘outloud’ so I have to be accountable, but maybe – it’s worth putting down the phone more frequently than we (ok, I) do. And be present among those you love. The dog. The partner. The kid.

Yourself.

Social Media does not help us live our own lives well. It creates jealousy, longings, desires based often on fabrication. Let me tell you. No bank accounts have enough in them. No marriage is perfect. No children are always angels. Sure, the beach from ‘that angle’ is pretty wonderful – but we have no idea what happened right before or right after that image was captured.

It’s time we’re all kinder to ourselves – we need to try desperately to truly appreciate what we have. Sure it could be better. But it also could be so much worse.

Today is truly first day of the rest of your life.

Pause. Love. Breathe. Dance. Sing. Sit.

Appreciate the rainbows.

Daddy, Penis, Harper, Vagina, Mommy…

I know as a mom of 3 and a 38 year old woman, it’s pretty much expected that – no – I do not have my 18 (or 21, or 30…or even 35) year old body.

I also know we are supposed to be comfortable with that. “Your body is incredible” “you carried these babies, it’s really a miracle”.

Blah blah.

I mean. Yeah. I get it. It’s for sure true. But, I looked pretty good at 18 (and 21 and still 30). And this thing that flops over my pants (pants that I basically need a clamp to pull/zip up) is just not my favorite. Nor are the Grandma arms. And what the hell with my feet? I need an entire new shoe wardrobe. Is that even a thing!?

Sure, our society sets unrealistic expectations of what women should look like. Period.

I get that – but also I’m only human and still suck my stomach in any time I walk by a mirror. And pick up my chin so the second (and third chins) flatten, just a tad. And turn at an angle when taking a photo. And…

I wish I could say I’m at peace with my new (“beautiful”) shape. But I won’t.

Ain’t true.

Let me be clear. I am eating chocolate chip cookies for breakfast. Doritos as a snack. Whatever handful of, whatever’s available for lunch. Hopefully some version of a chocolate bar for a treat. (It is Cadbury Cream Egg season afterall.) And definitely some ice cream throughout the day. So. I certainly cannot cry “poor me”. But, I can still be annoyed that – no, shockingly, breastfeeding DOES NOT melt the pounds away. And this is likely my new normal.

All this is just to say, I obviously don’t care THAT much or I would do something – anything – to change my behavior.

A salad from time to time, or a veggie for a change.

But. Nah. Bagels and Cheese are just too damn good.

I guess it all became more apparent with a recent realization from my ever loving – pretty verbal – 2 year old.

We are not of the mindset of teaching our kids that genitalia have cutesy or hush-hush names.

They are penises and vaginas.

Apparently Nathan had been keeping this one from me for a while. But then it all came out.

Kids say the darnedest things, eh?

(Daddy penis, Harper vagina, Mommy belly.)

My Kid Is Full Of Shit

Yeah. No. I’m serious. She really is.

For the last two months she’s been telling us, on repeat her “vagina hurts”. And I know this isn’t funny.

And In fact it’s really sad.

When your kid is hurting – and you can’t fix it – or figure out the problem – it hurts you, possibly more than it hurts them. But I think I’ve said and heard the word Vagina more in the last two months than I have in 38 years. And obviously, I have one.

We’ve gone to the doctor five times on this matter. And each time they’ve taken tests. Checked for infections. And they’ve all come back negative.

Put diaper cream on it. If that doesn’t work try cortisone. If not that. Bacitracin.

No? Vagina still hurts?

Nothing’s worked.

Finally we took a trip uptown to a pediatric urologist. I told Harper I was breaking her out of school for some Mommy Harpy time.

This had the luxury of being true. But hanging out at Weil Cornell for a full afternoon was likely not what she had anticipated.

After a few hours. Some ultrasounds, X-rays and a lot of stickers we learned of the culprit.

My kid is full of shit.

Apparently she is so blocked up with stool (for the last two months?? 💔) that it’s affecting her in more indirect ways. Which is obviously heartbreaking.

So for the next two days Harper and I will be home. Having extra special Harper Mommy time. Regrettably – this actually means: Bowel Cleanse.

We will be sitting on the toilet for 48 hours.

It’s really amazing. Before you meet your significant other you think ‘I need to look my best.’ Then you get engaged and start letting things go, just a bit. Then you live together and obviously bodily functions occur – that starts normalizing. But once the kids come EVERYTHING is out the window.

I’d venture to say 9 out of 10 conversations are about poop or vomit.

Needless to say – ultimately all that matters is my kid’s health.

Last week Harper and I Celebrated and Honored International Womens Day by attending the largest gathering of Moms at the UN. While “in session,” she had to poop.

So, what do you do when you’re in one of the most important places in the world?

No brainer.