Happy Holidays For Goodness Sake

Raising a child teaches you many things.  Not just about parenting, but about life and human nature, in general. This holiday season I feel like I have learned so much from my son.  He is a shining example of the joy that is innately part of the human condition.  It makes me startlingly aware that the negativity, prejudice, and bigotry that have become forefront features of our society, are, indeed, learned.  It is an absolute shame.

While social media has many positive aspects, it also let’s you see things you sometimes wish you hadn’t.  Like people’s opinions and views that aren’t in alignment with your own.  I try to be respectful about other people’s viewpoints.  I really try. But there are times I actually feel dirty for not speaking up and setting the world straight.  I know there is a line.  I’m just not sure of where it is anymore.  I feel like it used to be enough to just live your life by the principles you tried to uphold.  You did what you thought was right and prayed for the enlightenment of others who didn’t seem to follow the same compass.  But today, it seems as though there is a complete blur about what is good and just.  The grey area is an abyss and the surety of black and white is all murky and tainted.

There was a thread on the Book of Face that had something to do with preferring to say Merry Christmas as opposed to Happy Holidays.  Now this debate is dated, I know.  It’s been around for quite awhile.  In 2017, though, it is not only old fashioned, but has the air of  “Make America Great Again.”  Choosing to post and repost that sentiment could be construed as offensive, ignorant, and disrespectful of other cultures.  Do people understand that? Do they?  I’d like to think anyone I know might not have thought it through fully.  I’m not saying don’t write or say Merry Christmas.  If you celebrate Christmas, then by all means, sing it out to the world.  But to be offended by “Happy Holidays” is just ridiculous.  Because there are several other Holidays celebrated at this time of year.  In addition to the Christian Christmas there are a slew of Holidays celebrated in December:

Saint Nicholas Day (Christian)
Fiesta of Our Lady of Guadalupe (Mexican)
St. Lucia Day (Swedish)
Hanukkah (Jewish)
Three Kings Day/Epiphany (Christian)
Boxing Day (Australian, Canadian, English, Irish)
Kwanzaa (African American)
Omisoka (Japanese)
Yule & Saturnalia (Pagan)
Eid Al-Fitr (Muslim)

So, I go back to my son.  He has learned about Christmas from us, as we celebrate it.  But he has learned about most of the other holidays of the season from Sesame Street.  Yes, Sesame Street.  He seems partial to Christmas, but I think it is only because of Santa Claus.  It is hard to resist the jolly saint in the red suit who brings you toys.  But, he is as spirited about the other holidays.  I suppose it is because he has learned about them and sees that they bring joy to the people who celebrate them.  Even my three year old can see that saying Happy Holidays does not take anything away from his Merry Christmas.  He is an eager elf who wishes anyone and everyone tidings of the season.  Happy Holidays, Happy Kwanzaa, you name it.  It’s equal cheer to him.  Why can’t it be that way for all adults?

I know several people who believe in the Make Christmas Great Again theme.  They are church going folks.  They believe they are good Christians.  If you asked them, they would insist they weren’t bigoted.  But negating another religions sacred time, is bigoted.  Not to mention, un American.  Remember this country was founded on religious freedom.  It seems to me, the people who claim to have the moral high ground have lost their footing, most assuredly.  I know this Christmas vs Happy Holidays is such small potatoes.  Especially nowadays.  But I can’t help but think it’s these little things that chip away, bit by bit, at the core of our human decency.

Whatever it is you celebrate this season, may it bring you joy and peace in your heart.  We will do our best to keep the joy in our sons heart for ALL Holidays.  For ALL people.  For Goodness Sake.

Until next time, keep,fighting the good fight.  Remember, behind every great kid is a mom who is pretty sure she is screwing it up.  Happy Holidays! Xo







Mummy MIA

I will NOT gloat. I will NOT brag.  I am well aware that the success we enjoyed on our vacation to Disney World was an absolute crap shoot.  It could have easily gone awry.  It could have been filled with tears and tantrums, snot and sass.  We somehow dodged the bullet and had an amazing time.  O was unbelievably good.  He rolled with everything.  I am still amazed.  He exceeded any expectations I had (although, as you know, I kept them very low.). It was absolute joy and we can’t wait to go again.  Let the countdown begin! Again!

So since I can’t complain about my child’s behavior on our trip, let me let loose on a real parenting fail we witnessed whilst in the happiest place on earth.  Its unfortunate to see.  You think, wait, this is a place for family vacations and being together, right? I suppose there are all types of families and all types of a-holes.

We were enjoying the zero entry pool at the Animal Kingdom Lodge one day and this little girl decided to attach herself to us.  She was British and very chatty.  She was 5 years old.  I looked around to see where her parent or parents might be?  Strange to see a 5 year old on her own in the huge pool. She clearly could not swim, though she protested she could.  Her attendance to us became a little awkward as she started to hang on my husband while he was holding O to swim.  I told her it wasn’t safe for her to jump on anyone in the pool.  She then waded back to where she could stand on her own.  A woman appeared, who I assumed was her mother.  The woman told the little girl to watch her little brother.  And off the woman went.  To the bar.  In fact, the whole table of “adults” from that “family” were sat out of good view from the children in the pool.  Now little Chatty Cathy is in the pool again hanging around us while her 3 year old brother wades in shallower water.  He had swimmies on his arms, but really? 3!!! Alone in the pool with a bunch of strangers and his barely treading water 5 year old sister!  Mind you, this pool is HUGE.  I asked Chatty where her parents were.  She pointed to the bar area, “over there somewhere.”  What the heck, people!  Are you kidding me?  You don’t leave children (5 & 3) in the hotel pool by themselves.  Are you complete idiots?  As a parent, are you thinking, “Well, someone will watch them.”  ??? Like the parents who are actually IN the pool with their kids.  Like us?

Listen, I get that we ALL NEED a vacation.  I get that we are ALL in vacation mode.  But just because you are in Disney World doesn’t mean bad things don’t happen to kids there.  AND…you don’t get to take a vacation from your kids in Disney World.  If you wanted alone time, you should have left them at home and went to some adults only all-inclusive where the drinks are free, as clearly that is where your head is at.  As parents we don’t get to take a respite from our duties of caring for the well being of our children.  It’s a 24/7 job.  Sorry.  Even on vacation. And this isn’t about letting your children be free and not helicopter parenting…..this is about safety and, I don’t know, maybe spending some quality time with your children! Who am I to say, right? And, yes, it certainly does takes a village.  But when the parents vacate the village for the local watering hole, leaving their young to latch on to just anyone, it really pisses this villager off.  If you don’t understand the incredible privilege you have to be a parent, then you certainly won’t understand my point.  We GET to be their protectors!  It may feel like a job some days, but make no mistake, it is a special opportunity, not enjoyed by everyone.  It is my humble opinion, that if you piss away that time (yes, I just said piss away), you are a fool.  End of rant.

Until next time, I’ll try not to rage on.  Remember, behind every great kid is a mother who is pretty sure she is screwing it up.  Thanks so much for reading.  Xo


P90X or PB&J

I was at the park the other day with a bunch of moms and their children from my town.  I am, undoubtedly, the oldest of our group.  I realize that our ages make little difference.  We mostly talk about our kids.  We watch them interact.  We bond over parenting trials and triumphs. The differences in our children’s ages seems more apparent than our own ages.  At least from my perspective.  The other mom’s could totally be thinking, “Who is this old lady?”  Lol.  But, Ok.  I digress.

So we are at the park and someone brings up some work out DVD. I was going to write video, but that really glorifies my age.  It may not even be a DVD, but some type of “on demand” thing you can subscribe to.  You, by now, are getting the idea that I have no clue or interest in any kind of P90 X, Y or Z.  Someone brought up the 30 day diet or challenge or fix… or something.  Again, I have no clue about anything paleo, Atkins or Zone.  I had to actually google “diets” to find those.  Did you know there is something actually called the Taco Diet? You literally only eat tacos for thirty days.  That’s insane.

When I was younger (in my 20’s and 30’s) I was a vegetarian.  When I turned 40 I started incorporating meat into my diet.  Not a crazy amount, but I realized I really liked a good steak every now and then.  I ate clean.  Healthy.  Fast forward to present day, 47 year old me.  I’m on the PB&J Crust diet.  It’s when you eat the remnants of your child’s meals to stave off hunger, or, let’s be honest, just because it’s there.  My breakfast intake yesterday consisted of 1 spoonful of yogurt, 1 peanut butter covered slice of banana, and a morsel of spinach banana muffin.  All from the picked over plate of my son.  My lunch was the diet’s namesake, a PB&J crust, plus 1/4 of his unfinished sandwich and a handful of graham bunnies.  Delicious.  No wonder I eat all Willy Nilly the rest of the day.  Now this isn’t everyday.  There are days when I am actually conscious when parenting and make myself egg whites and avocado.   But some days it’s like I am in a trance and what happens between my hand and my mouth is all but a blur.

Now I can tell you for a fact that my younger self would have never let herself eat so poorly.  She would have never let herself gain 5 0r 10 pounds.  It just would not have happened.  But as I age and I don’t have to think about wearing costumes onstage now, I am way more relaxed about what I eat and, in turn, I am more relaxed about what I look like.  I think there will be a limit to my madness.  (Like I’m pretty much there.) But I can’t imagine myself being crazed to be thin, like I was when I was younger.  I remember believing my worth was directly correlated to my appearance.  I suppose, in my line of work, there may have been some truth to that.  But I think I took it further than just work, especially when I was 20 & 30. I think I believed that I was lesser than if I wasn’t aesthetically at my best.  Ah, youth! This 47 year old feels sorry for that silly girl.

Don’t get me wrong.  I want to be healthy.  And power to any mom who gets herself to the gym!  I admire anyone striving to get back their pre baby body.  But I gotta be honest, being over forty puts you at a big disadvantage.  Recovery from anything takes so much longer, let alone pregnancy and childbirth.  Ugh.  This PB&J Crust Diet is all fad and will have to go, for sure. But as long as my clothes fit (cause I LOVE my clothes)  I don’t mind too much if I’m a bit softer.  Well, a lot softer.  I’m the happiest I’ve ever been and it clearly isn’t correlated to my appearance these days.  I guess it just means that my mind is the healthiest it’s ever been.  And I’ll take that.

Until next time,  keep fighting the good fight.  And remember behind every great kid is a mom who is pretty sure she is screwing it up.  Thanks so much for reading! Xoxo





Great Expectations: How to Enjoy Disney World With Your Three Year Old

As I write this, I am sat in the window seat of a 747 with my son next to me and my husband on the aisle. We are headed to Florida. Disney World to be exact. I am mildly relieved, thus far, as with only one hour to go, things have gone pretty well. One word. iPad. I think I should write Apple a thank you letter.

I’ve decided the only way to approach this vacation is to anticipate it being the most stressful, horrible, un-relaxing experience I could imagine. That way, anything more positive than that is a win. I think it is the only way to approach ANYTHING with a three year old. That way we are not imposing unrealistic expectations on our son and, somehow, it helps to keep our sanity intact. There will no doubt be backlash later in the day for allowing two hours and forty minutes of screen time, but for now, all is quiet on the O front. And I’ll take it where I can get it.

They say flying in the morning with a child is best. I kind of have to agree. Our son, at least, is the most agreeable early in the day. This ungodly hour (5:30 am takeoff) won’t wear well on us later today, but again, for now, there is a sense of peace and calm. One Bloody Mary each and all seems right with the world and our present situation.

Expecting nothing from the first time you take your child to Disney is easier than it sounds. If we truly expected nothing, we probably wouldn’t go. Or at least we would go somewhere way less expensive. That way the sticker shock wouldn’t slap you across the face and add insult to injury. So as much as we tell ourselves to have no expectations, you kind of just do. And if you are like me and my husband, you grew up going there with your family and you have all sorts of memories and attachments to the place.

I guess I have to remind myself over and over that my child is only 3. I have to try and put myself in his shoes a bit on this trip. If I get tired and overwhelmed, what must he be feeling? If I am hangry (yes, hungry and angry) how does he feel? There is much to enjoy, of course, BUT it’s all new to him! His senses will be on overload, no doubt. It’s entirely unrealistic to expect him to just roll with everything and foolish of me to think it could even be possible.

So these are my self imposed rules: I will try to keep my cool. I will try to let go of any expectations I might have. I will try to take in all the magic of each moment. And, if certain things aren’t quite magical this trip, well, there is always next time. Here’s to a wonderful vacation at Mickey’s house. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Until next time, keep your fingers crossed for me. And remember, behind every great kid is a Mom who is pretty sure she is screwing it up. Thanks for reading! Xo

Pink or Blue

“When you ask your child if they are a boy or a girl how does he or she answer you?” This was a question on a progress evaluation for O from a preschool playgroup program he is involved in.
I had never thought to ask him this question. So I followed directions and asked him. His answer was not what I anticipated. So I asked again. And again, he repeated his answer. “I am a boy or a girl.” Maybe he didn’t understand the question? I asked him if his cousin Nora was a girl or a boy. He said, “A girl….or a boy.” Clearly gender is not on his radar yet. At three and a half should it be? I don’t know.

We knew the sex of our child before he was born. It was obvious when we had our amniocentesis and we wanted to know. My practical nature was more than happy to know. We didn’t go crazy with blue for boy stuff, but he did have a nautical themed nursery. It was grays, blues and greens. I dressed him in basically what people gave me….so lots of boy stuff. Onesies with sayings like Handsome like Daddy, Little Slugger. His toys were lots of cars and trucks mixed in with a cooking set and a pink interactive picnic basket he just adored. I honestly didn’t give it much thought. The only hand me downs he got were from other boys, though I would not have minded putting him in a color typically associated with girls. In fact, people always thought he was a girl. “Oh! She’s beautiful!” “Thank you, yes I think he is.” “Oh, I’m so sorry!” (As if they had said something truly awful). I was never phased by it. He was a really pretty baby. I honestly didn’t care if anyone thought he was a girl.

Fast forward to present day in the toy department at Target. It’s a frequent destination on our travels. O has his favorite toys and every visit he will bee line for the “Our Generation doll” aisle. He asks me to help him get the big car (which happens to be pink, as it is marketed towards girls) and the camper so he can play with them. His latest interest is the new laundromat and, of course, the ice cream truck. Have you seen that thing? It really is amazing! He can spend 30 minutes playing with these items. I literally have to coax him away.  He tends to put one of his matchbox cars (which he is rarely without) inside these setups. We sometimes get odd looks from other parents and older children, as if to say, “Why is your boy playing with girl toys?” I don’t acknowledge the looks and they go completely unnoticed by O. I have heard Fathers, after looking at us, tell their sons, “Let’s go look at some boy toys.” I have even heard men and women tell their sons, “You don’t want that. That’s for girls.” The level of ignorance is staggering.

We are so offended at the abundant misogyny in our society. We are so astounded by the gender inequality that is rampant in our culture. And when I say “we” I mean many of us, but certainly not all of us. Yet, aren’t we sort of setting it up right from the start? We have these picture perfect roles for our children to fit into and we seem to unapologetically, and I’m sure, quite innocently, jam it down their throats without much thought to what their thoughts or feelings are (or will) be as they become more gender aware. It starts at these gender reveal parties which seem to be all the rage these days. Pink or blue? The term for these events should really be sex reveal parties, as that is what is actually being revealed. Just because you have a child born with male genitalia, doesn’t mean he is going to identify with being a boy. But if you think about it, the child, before even being born, is being expected to fit into our idea of what his or her identity should be. Blue is for boys. Pink is for girls. It’s just so banal.

You know what I want O to be? Happy. I want him to be so freaking happy and secure in his own skin. I want him to beam joy.  I just can’t see that happening if he isn’t allowed to be his true self, whatever that true self may happen to be. I have many friends, who from a very young age, felt they were different. And from a very young age, knew who they truly were wasn’t going to be accepted by their parents. So they hid their true selves from their families, or they denied their true selves altogether, only to come back to it as an adult with a plethora of issues. I can’t imagine anyone wanting that for their child. And yet…

Because of my theatre background, several people have asked me if we plan on Oliver taking dance or theatre lessons. I don’t know. He is certainly exposed to it. He sees the shows I direct. He sings with both me and my husband. I will let him decide. Just like we will expose him to baseball or other sports.  If he wants, he can play. If he’d rather take dance, then he can do that. If he wants to do both, then fine. He needs to lead us.  I believe that our job is to show him the possibilities. He must choose without feeling he is letting us down by following his own path. I think this starts way earlier than most of us think. (Pink or blue?)

We talk so much about raising girls to be strong. And I support that wholeheartedly. But you rarely hear about raising our sons to be caring and empathetic. Why is that? Why are we so afraid to teach our sons traits that are associated with being female? Won’t it make them better Fathers, husbands and caretakers? Won’t it teach them how to be better men? I think so. But that’s just this Mommy’s opinion. So don’t jump all over me for expressing it. But it’s worth a thought or two, don’t you think?

Until next time, keep fighting the good fight, and remember, behind every great kid, is a mom who is pretty sure she is screwing it up. Thanks for reading! It’s good to be back. Xo

Back In The Saddle

Well, hello! It has been quite a while, friend. My hiatus from writing just might be over. I have taken a long enough pause to re-group my thoughts, to step away from the rage inspired by ridiculous politics, and to muster the courage to feel that, somehow, perhaps, my words might actually matter. It has been a long needed respite. If you have stayed with me through this nothingness, I’m truly grateful. I couldn’t expect it of any reader. If you are new to my musings, I invite you to go back to the beginning. Take the journey which will lead you to where we are now – an advanced maternal age mother (now of three years) navigating her way through preschool pandemonium. I have matured in my mothering, but the certainty of it all still eludes me. I feel I am now wise enough to know the uncertainty will most likely never go away.

I have not stopped thinking about writing. It has always been at the forefront of my thoughts this past however many months. I’d have to go way back to see exactly how long it has actually been since my last post, but I think it was last May. Even before that, my posts were becoming few and far between. After a gut wrenching election cycle, the state of our nation was really getting me down. It felt like I couldn’t not make every post about something political. That isn’t what I had set out to do. Also, I began teaching voice and acting at a fantastic arts academy. It takes up quite a bit of time for prep work. Time I used to use to write. The teaching has now expanded, which is brilliant, but again, I only have so much time. I chose to let this go for a while. Did I mention that I have matured and realize that I can’t actually do Everything?

I feel ready to give voice to this next phase of motherhood, however tight my time may be. My little O is no longer a baby. (That is super hard to say!) He is 3 1/2 years old. He is tall and full of personality. He has the energy of the Energizer Bunny and the mood swings of Sybil. He is funny, emotional, and all over the place. He is imperfectly perfect. I don’t want to miss chronicling this time in our lives because I am crunched for time or because I get lazy. This blog is ultimately for him. So here I am. Back in the saddle.

Until next time, keep fighting the good fight. Remember, behind every great kid is a mother who is pretty sure she is screwing it up. My current life story! Lol. Thanks for reading. Xo

Being Alive

Ok.  I’ve crunched through my bowl of low salt popcorn.  I drank my second 12 oz glass of water for the day.  I’ve watched a bit of spirit crushing C-span.  I’ve gone through the news and political blurbs that, lately,  hurt my brain.  And yet, here is the ironic truth…..I remain happy.  I am happy because I am grateful to be here.  Not just to exist, but to be alive.  Truly alive.

The other day I was listening to the Broadway channel on Sirius XM, as any good musical theatre geek does.  Raul Esparza’s rendition of “Being Alive” from Stephen Sondheim ‘s musical Company came on.  As I drove,  the words he sang seemed to penetrate me in a way they never had before.

Somebody hold me too close.
Somebody hurt me too deep.
Somebody sit in my chair,
And ruin my sleep,
And make me aware,
Of being alive.
Being alive.

Somebody need me too much.
Somebody know me too well.
Somebody pull me up short,
And put me through hell,
And give me support,
For being alive.
Make me alive.
Make me alive.

Somebody crowd me with love.
Somebody force me to care.
Somebody let me come through,
I’ll always be there,
As frightened as you,
To help us survive,
Being alive.
Being alive.
Being alive!

Its a song about the fundamental need we have to be needed and loved by another being.  I think when we accept that we, indeed,  have just that, life gets a whole lot brighter, even in the midst of hardships, depression and crumbling governments.  I talk a lot about gratitude and perspective. If ever there was a time for people to take control of their perspective, it is now.  My top priorities are my son and husband.  My husband is my person, like in the song.  He is my someone and my O is the natural extension of that love and connection.  They are my everything. I choose to make them my main focus. Of course there is room for other things in my orb, but I am making sure to balance my intake of the negative world and alternative facts, with that which inspires, empowers, and enriches me.  I’m reading this and I am sounding a lot like some tripping ethereal hippie.  I assure you, my walls aren’t melting and my feet are planted on the ground.

You may think I’m coo coo for Cocoa Puffs, but I truly feel I owe my wonderful life to my husband.  Had he not risked revealing his true self to me all those years ago…  Had he not been so fearless in his love for me when I was still the coward…I would not be this unabashedly happy today.   And, he made one hell of a baby with me!  I tell you, I owe everything that matters to him.  Obviously, I could go further and thank my lucky stars, or the Universe or, duh, God.  Absolutely.  And that is the whole point.  What is going on right now in our world is abominable, I’m my opinion.  It is a sad and deplorable time in our country.   But it is only a tiny piece of time in the puzzle of our existence.   It cannot take over my mind.  I am in this fight for the long haul.  What kind of warrior would I be if I just crawled under my covers binge watching Netflix in comatose denial?  I will not give up any part of my wonderful life to the threatening darkness.  I can be involved, informed, even irate and still be happy.   I will remain happy because I am choosing to be.  Because my husband and son deserve me to be.  And my vigilance and resolve to make this world a better place will only strengthen.   For me, that is what it means to be alive today.  Thank you, my love, for making me ALIVE.

Until next time, keep fighting the good fight and remember behind every great kid is a mom who is pretty sure she is screwing it up! Thanks for reading! Peace! Xo

Nothing But The Truth

It’s that time of year again.  Award season for the film industry.  I’ve been feverishly watching the SAG nominated films, so I can send in my ballot on time.  Yesterday, I watched a film I had actually never heard of before.  (Now, I do live under a rock, so that’s probably not too surprising.) The film is called Captain Fantastic.  Have you heard of it?  I thought it was wonderful.  It has got me thinking about how we choose to raise our children,  and, if and when, we should shield them from life’s truths.  When your child asks you a question, do you tell them the truth? Do you sugar coat things? Do you completely avoid certain things?  Or do you tell them the honest truth regardless of their age and how tough the answer might be?  The father in this film, played by Vigo Mortinsen, tells his children the unfiltered truth.  He also raises them in the woods, teaches them survival skills, and “home” schools them without the use (or need) of today’s technology.  You might be starting to get the picture.  Hippie parents raising their tribe of 6 children, living off the land, yada yada.  All of that is inconsequential.  The thing that interested me the most was the way he handled the truth with his kids.

I often think back to times of tragedy as being instances that must have been tough for parents to offer explanations their children .  The death of a family member.  The terrorist attacks on 9/11. The Sandy Hook school shootings.    I didn’t have my son then, but I remember my brother’s kids being old enough to know about Sandy Hook.  I remember my brother and sister in law talking to them about it, though I don’t recall the specifics of how they did it.  I also know of other parents who completely shielded their kids from the whole event.  I suppose everyone knows their children well enough to know what they can or cannot handle and what it is, as a parent, they want them to be exposed to.  I have often thought about it during these crazy times in America.  O is still too young to understand any of this yet, but it won’t be that long before he starts asking questions about our world…..and well, about everything.

I can’t say for sure (as how can you know until you are in that moment) but I think I’d like to be completely truthful with O.  I tell him so much already.  Things that I am sure people think he is far too young to absorb.  I constantly define words and concepts.  Does he “get” any of it? Probably not, but he does often surprise me with things that have sunk in, unbeknownst to me.  I think about the capacity his brain has to make connections right now.  I figure I should give him as much information as I can.  As he gets older, I’d rather topics not be taboo for us.  I don’t want him to feel embarrassed or ashamed to ever ask something.  I want him to know that if he asks us a question he will hear the truth from us.  If he is looking for an explanation, I’d rather we be in on the conclusion he draws from the facts presented to him.  I don’t want to teach him what to think.  I want to teach him how to think.  Does that make sense?

I also know some parents who don’t want their children to experience difficult things.  Like being around an elderly sick grandparent.  I’ve heard “it’s too upsetting for the children.”  Or failing at something.   Or losing.  But isn’t that all part of life?  The learning is not in the failing…it’s in the getting back up and trying again.  Do people still teach their kids that?  I don’t really remember learning that as a child, but as an actor, it’s a paramount point to understand.  You learn quickly as an actor that there is no shame in trying and failing…only in not trying at all.  I’m not sure that is a common theme in today’s youth twitter feed.

Let me say, I don’t believe a child should be treated as an equal to an adult.  They need guidance and structure.  But I do think a child should be respected as a thinking being.  I think it is important to respect their intellect and their emotional life enough to be straight with them.  I mean, life is wonderful.  But it’s also tough.  Why would we want to shield O from any part of the journey? Eventually, he will be on his own.  Won’t he be better prepared for the world if he has some knowledge of it and the truth on his side?

Until next time, keep fighting the good fight, and remember, behind every great kid is a mom who is pretty sure she is screwing it up.


Wanted Rose Colored Glasses


I have always loved the holidays.  I am the type of girl who starts listening to Christmas music right after Halloween.  I love decorating, baking cookies, wrapping gifts and making all sorts of homemade delights.  This year, though, I am slow to start.  I am finding it hard to get in the spirit.   Real life seems harsher this year for many reasons. The woman who taught me about Christmas, my Mother, is sick.  She is in a rehabilitation facility in need of 24/7 assistance.   Wrapping my head around this painfully slow loss would be enough.  But let’s add the notion of spouting “Peace on Earth” and “Love and Joy” feeling somewhat fake this year, knowing that racism and hate is very much alive and evidently empowered in our beloved country.   This post-truth era bullshit we are experiencing makes all the songs and tidings of goodwill seem phony.  So phony it’s sad.  Even the Carpenter’s Christmas Album feels weird this year.

There is an anger and sadness inside of me I don’t quite know what to do with.  I feel incredible loss.  I  feel this odd, out of body loss one experiences as an aging parent slowly slips away.   It is the strangest feeling to miss your mother while she is right in front of you.  It’s excruciating, really.  I also feel the loss of the sense of good I thought the world inherently possessed.  It’s as if I have woken up in an alternate universe.  And now it’s time to play Christmas carols and get on with things….and it just feels false.  I don’t want to sing the Hallelujah Chorus while white supremists are appointed to top White House positions.  I want to scream, “Stop!”

I’m sorry for my rant of negativity.  I’m sorry I’m political.  I’m sorry that I give a shit.   I have been trying so hard to find the positives.  I am desperate to find them.  I need to find them, if not for my own good, for the good of my family, who needs me to see the good.  It is my thing to see the good.  There is a pair of rose colored glasses in our home with my name all over them.  They are just broken in about five different places right now.  There is no doubt, my role in the play “Our Life,” is that of Pollyanna.  I’m failing miserably.

One of my biggest fears is that I will not be able to sweep this state of mind away with peppermint lattes and wishes for Santa.  My mother is wrapped in almost every memory I have of Christmas.  Her exquisite detail of preserving the magic of Santa for all of us…the way she made each of us feel special..the time she took enjoying the season herself.  I remember coming home from school close to Christmas Day, walking into the house filled with the aroma of holiday baking and the sounds of Johnny Mathis on the record player.   I remember waking up each Christmas morning and it was as if elves had sprinkled christmas magic all over the house.  She was gifted in magic.

I know I should celebrate those memories.  And I suppose I will.  It’s just right now there is a sadness attached to the sweetness.  Like the last bite of the most delicious cake that can never be baked again.  I guess I just need more time.  Until next time, keep fighting the good fight and remember, behind every great kid is a mom who is pretty sure she screwing it up.  Thanks for reading.  Xo


Lonely Mommy Long Winter


This Mommy business is a lonely one.  While I am basking in the joy of it all, I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I feel lonely quite a bit of the time.  I have a hunch that I’m not the only mommy out there who feels this way, at times.  Let’s face it, my constant companion is a two year old who doesn’t speak in full sentences yet and who has mood swings that rival the best of schizophrenics . I keep hearing that motherhood is so rewarding.  But I am guessing the big reward is a type of delayed gratification.   Like after all this hard work, one day I’ll look up at my son while he accepts the Nobel Peace prize and know it was all worth it.  Right?  But for now, staying home raising a child, while full of great moments, can be exhausting, and most definitely, lonely.

I find myself alone in my thoughts for a great part of the day.  For me, that isn’t always good.  I tend to over think things.  It makes my husband crazy.  Sorry, lover.  But, it is hard to avoid.  I often find, if something is important to me, it is hard to just let it go.  I take far too much to heart and listen to far too much CNN radio.   The icing on that cake of disaster, is that I am incredibly sensitive with a two year old for company.

I find most other moms out and around where we live, pretty much keep to themselves.  At the play area in the mall the other day, I sat across from another mother.  I could tell her son was at least a year or more older than O.  She looked stylish, involved, (but not hovering), and a bit older (like me).  I thought to myself, I wonder if I could be friends with her?  The children played and we knowingly nodded to each other here and there.  At one point I commented on how I loved her son’s hair.  A head full of curls.  He was a gorgeous child.  She politely said “thanks.”  But that was the extent of our interaction.  We each moved onto our own day  each with our own child in tow.  It’s weird.  Yet, I suppose it would be weirder to approach someone you don’t  even know, in a mall,  and say, “let’s be friends!”  Yeah, that is most definitely weirder.

The truth is, I guess I am a bit of a loner.  It isn’t necessarily always by choice.  It reminds me of high school at times….when you walked into the cafeteria and didn’t see your friends.  You would feel awkward or uncomfortable until you spotted your group.  You might give off an I don’t care air,  just to self preserve.  Maybe I give off a stand-offish  vibe off to other moms?   Ironic, the self admitted loner saying she gets lonely.  Ha.  But it’s true.  It is absurd that I worry that O doesn’t like big groups.  Neither does Mommy (or Daddy for that matter!) I swear, does our child stand a chance?

I look up at the skylight in our family room.  It is covered with frost on this frigid November morning.  Winter is fast approaching.  It’s gonna be a long lonely one unless I jump out of my comfort zone.  I need to commit to putting aside my mild discomfort with new people.  I need to venture into the unknown of new friendships.  I suppose I find that most of the moms I encounter are much younger than me.  But, in truth,  age has little to do with commonalities shared among moms.  I’m looking for excuses to stay stuck.

No, it is time to put on my big girl layers of cuddle duds and flannel.  I have had wonderful friendships in my life, that still exist, though almost all are now at a long distance.  It’s time for some more day to day friends.  My life is here in New England now where the winters are cold and often long.  What I know of friendship is that it is necessary and most definitely warms your heart.

Until next time, keep fighting the good fight, and remember, behind every great kid is a mom who is pretty sure she is screwing it up.  Yup.  Pretty much every day.  xo