Embracing the Stay-At-Home Mom Status

It has been one year since I resigned from my corporate job.  Although I work from home part-time, most of my time is spent as a stay-at-home mom.  The first few months of my transition where difficult as I had been working, sometimes two jobs, since I became of the legal age to do so.

I had grown accustomed to the rat race and always being in a rush. I wasn’t bothered by my phone ringing constantly, or by the dozens of people who needed me daily – all at once.  My days were filled with presentations, client meetings, analyzing budgets and attending strategy meetings. This was my normal and I enjoyed it for a long time, however when my work-life balance began to fade quickly when my son was born – my priorities shifted.  If I was going to bow out of the race for a bit, there wasn’t a better time to do it. So….I did just that, gracefully of course. Carpe diem!


At first I marveled in the thought of finally having time for me. I envisioned a life of leisure – spending my days working out, lunching with friends, running errands and doing things with my son.  Unfortunately, this fairy tale never came to be.  The reality was my frantic corporate job was much easier than being a stay-at-home mom. I am just as busy and my days revolve around entertaining a toddler.  My presentations are now crayon drawings of stick figures labeled: Mommy and Sebastian.  Boy.. are their attention spans short or what!? It’s a constant dog-and-pony show around here. 

The days have flown by and we finally figured out a schedule, until we welcomed our new baby in November.  Now I am back at square one.  I’m hoping by his 10th birthday, I will have it together.  All of this is a far cry from my life just a year ago, however through it all I have learned to embrace the benefits of being a SAHM.

Some benefits (for me) are:

More time with my little men!

This is obviously the biggest advantage of staying home. Before, I was lucky if I got to kiss them goodnight. Our weekends were often rushed with activities and chores, which translated into stress and anxiety.  Now I get to hug and kiss them a lot more, which I am sure they love too!

SAHM friends!

First order of business after my resignation was to make other SAHM friends.  It’s hard to have SAHM friends when you work because once you get home you are doing the same thing they’re doing: baths, dinner and bedtime routines. Making new friends allowed me to get adult time and give my kids new playmates. Plus you have someone who gets how being a SAHM is just as difficult as working in the corporate world. Trust me – adults can act like children just as much as your toddler can.

Embracing the yoga pant!

My first few weeks at home I dressed up – literally.  What was I thinking?  You are thrown up on all day, why would I wear something nice?  Then one day I put on my yoga pants to work out in…. and they stayed on for the next ten months.  First, yoga pants are extremely comfortable and second they make everyone think you are a regular at the gym.  Suckers! My only warning is that yoga pants can somewhat trick you – we often forget they stretch. This means they still fit after you binge on cake and nachos.  Then you act surprised when you put your jeans on and they seem a little tight. Ladies, don’t let the yoga pants fool you; you really do need to work out. Damn it – I thought I found a short cut!

Yay no more suits!
Yay no more suits!

HGTV/ Food Network

TV was a luxury I just didn’t have time for.  On the rare occasion time did allow for TV, it was showing Disney Junior.  Not that I have a lot of time for TV now, but when the boys are napping I can feed my obsession with HGTV and The Food Network!  I learned to cook from The Food Network and HGTV brought out the designer in me that I didn’t even know existed! You just have to be careful not to get the bug to renovate your entire house from all the ideas you get.  House Hunters International makes me feel like I’m exploring the world from my very own couch.  Who says you need to pay for an expensive, exotic vacation? It’s all right there on HGTV!

VIP at Starbucks

Starbucks takes on a whole new role when you’re a mom – it’s your escape. It may be the only adult contact you receive all day, and they make you a delicious, energy-boosting beverage.  The only way your beverage could be better is if there were alcohol in it!  It’s also awesome that you don’t have to wait in line like cattle during rush hour!  All the barista’s know me and are involved in my life.   They know my drink and have it ready as soon as I enter the store, and they even act like they love my kids. I heart you Starbucks!

Less guilt

When I was working full time I always felt guilty.  Do my kids know me? Am I neglecting them? If I went to get a haircut or went to the grocery store without them, I felt like it was one less minute I should be spending with them.  In doing this I created more anxiety for myself.  I needed (and deserved) that time for me too. Now since I spend most of my time with my boys, as soon as my husband gets home I have no problem running out the door for a pedicure. It’s a win-win, we spend time together and my feet aren’t hideous!  I actually enjoy my me time without feeling like I have to rush home now.


I’m sure there are many more, but these are my top observations over the past year. As a work-a-holic, I thought I would absolutely hate staying home and it turns out – it’s pretty awesome! I have fully embraced this new chapter in my life. What are your favorite things about being a SAHM? Or a Working Mom? Share with us.


No One Is More Important Than You

In your adolescent years it is quite common to receive advice about life and what is to come in adulthood.  Most of this advice you tend to shelf because not only do you find yourself to be invincible, but adulthood seems like light-years away.  Then one day, poof, you’re an adult and all those words that came out of your parents’ mouths suddenly start to make sense.  An invaluable statement my mother made to me when I was a young girl was:

“Never lose yourself in someone or something else. Once you lose yourself, you will find you really have no one.”

At the time I thought she just said this because she hated my boyfriend and knew I deserved better (which by the way – she was right!), however she really said it because she saw a pattern forming.  I would often sacrifice what was important to me or change myself to please others, especially men.  I would lose myself, which ultimately resulted in my own misery.

As I grew into a woman, I started understanding more of the importance of her statement.  I was responsible for my own happiness.  If I lost sight of what I wanted and needed, I would never truly be happy.

Women wear many hats in life: wife, partner, mother, and employee, just to name a few.  It is very easy to give all your energy and time to these obligations and forget about what’s most important – you.  If you are not happy, odds are your family isn’t happy.  If you are always miserable, your career is probably suffering too.  It is imperative to take time to do what you like to do, even if it’s one hour a week to read a book or get a pedicure. It’s okay to divert some of that energy and attention to yourself. As a mother of two, I know it’s hard to find time and mother’s guilt can often keep you from doing things for yourself, but I will fill you in on a little secret:  Not only are you worth it…you deserve it!


As we enter a New Year, make a resolution to love yourself more.  Make you a priority.  Ask for help when needed, and take it without feeling guilty. Go on that run every other night.  Have a girl’s night where there are plenty of adult beverages to enjoy. Hell, even lock the door when you take a shower so your kids won’t come in and disrupt you.

Taking the time to unwind resets your mind and spirit.  You’re just as important as your partner, your children, and your career.  Remember:  If momma isn’t happy – no one is.



To All the Father’s Out There: It’s Not You, It’s Us.

As you may already know women are innately crazy, especially when in regards to our children.  We are overprotective, jealous, and all-knowing when it comes to the well-being of our babies.  It comes from a place deep inside, and we are unable to tame it. So know the next time we yell at you for something you did with the kids, we truly can’t help ourselves.  We just see things completely different.

what mom sees

Right before we had our son a month ago, I sat down next to my husband and told him I wanted to apologize in advance.  With a puzzled look on his face he followed up with a hesitant,

“For what? Do I dare ask?”

“You’ll see after the baby is here, so remember this sincere apology.”

I wanted to apologize early because I remembered how I turned into a certified lunatic right after we had our first kid.  Nothing he could do was right when caring for our baby.

“You’re not being gentle!”

“His diaper is too tight!”

“Wash your hands before you touch him!”

“Cuddle with him!”

“Don’t cuddle too tight!”

“Don’t shove the bottle in his mouth!”

“You’re going to slow!”

“You’re not going fast enough!”

In the essence of time, I will stop there or else I could probably go on forever.

With our second kid I was hoping, (hoping being the operative word), to be less of a psycho, but I knew the odds were not in my favor.  I am a woman and I am also obsessed with my kids. Plus, just like in pregnancy a woman’s hormones are a complete wreck after the baby until her body gets back to normal.  This alone is a recipe for disaster.

I have tried to explain this phenomenon to my husband many times, but it’s hard to find the right words.  I usually start with saying, “No one loves these kids more than me,” which is true, but it doesn’t mean he doesn’t love them.  He’s a great father and I know he loves them deeply….just not as much as me.

These two are inseparable!
These two are inseparable!

All fathers must understand that we spent what seemed like a lifetime baking these kids.  We fell in love with them as soon as the pregnancy test boasted a positive sign.  We felt their hiccups and movements in our bodies. We gave up wine and sushi for them.  We went through horrendous pain and sacrificed our bodies to get our babies here. Once they arrive, it’s our boobs that leak when they cry.  After all this, the last thing we want is for someone else to harm a hair on our precious little miracles heads.

I want all fathers to know that the excessive nagging and micro-managing truly comes from a place of love.


Life (Or Lack Thereof) With a Newborn

As many of you know I just had a baby.  He is not my first, but in many ways it feels that way.  My older son is three, so it seems like he was a baby a lifetime ago. I thought I remembered what life was like with a newborn, however I was wrong. I only remembered the basics: sleepless nights, lots of poopy diapers and, of course, vomit comets.

I forgot how your schedule is so tight with naps and feedings.  You literally have no time for anything!  Showers are a luxury at this point.  Anytime I sit down to eat or try and shower the baby suddenly manages to wake from his comatose nap.  It’s like he has mom radar:  MOM needs 5 minutes to shove food in her face or wash her dirty booty – time for me to wake up!

I also forgot that I am the human equivalent to a cow.  I make so much milk that not only do I breastfeed, but I have to pump too.  This is beyond time consuming.  I’m trying not to complain because I know I am losing a ton of calories a day. Every night I pray the skinny fairy will continue to grant me all this milk, because it is undoubtedly helping me on the scale.

Already out of room!
Already out of room!


Another lost memory was when you get close to your newborn to feed them and their little heads shake side-to-side in desperation until their piranha mouths latch on. Newborns wiggle a lot, so along with their super human strength it makes it hard to calm them down enough to feed. While feeding they grunt and swallow loud enough for the neighbors to hear.  I laugh at this every time. I only pumped with my first son because he wouldn’t latch, so I didn’t realize how painful breastfeeding could be. Three weeks in and my lady lumps are pretty much numb, so I think I’m past the electrocution feeling you get when they first start feeding.  Dramatic I know, but ask any woman and she will tell you the same thing – it hurts!

I did remember the sleep deprivation. It seems worse the second time around, mostly because I now have two kids to tend to. Nights are always entertaining around here. My husband has been a saint with helping in any way possible even though he has to work.  The only problem is ­– he is a very heavy sleeper, and by that I mean I could blast a trumpet in his ear and he still wouldn’t wake up. It usually takes a dozen times calling his name and shaking him to wake him up. I, on the other hand, can hear a single drop of water drip in the sink and spring awake.  He also wakes up very confused and out of it. I always tell him to take a minute to gain consciousness before he takes our newborn down the dark stairwell. The other night he volunteered for the 2 a.m. shift, so when I heard the baby starting to wake I woke him up, then I turned back to the bassinet to comfort the baby until he came to get him. After a few seconds I looked back and my husband was gone.  Where did he go? Bathroom?  Why are all the lights off? What’s happening?  I called his name and then heard him coming back up the stairs.  As he came into view I saw him carrying our 30-pound toddler.  He did not just take the wrong kid!  Yes, he did. Before I could open my mouth he said, “Don’t ask, I have no idea what I’m doing.” He laid our older son in the bed then came and grabbed the baby.  The next morning we were in tears laughing.  This is one story he will never live down!


Overall, the biggest adjustment has been getting used to being a mom of two. Surprisingly my older son has been very accepting of his new baby brother.  When I saw him for the first time after the baby was born it was surreal.  Suddenly he wasn’t my baby anymore and he looked huge!  How did he get so big overnight?  Is he taking growth hormone behind my back? Stop growing so fast, my heart can’t take it! 

I feel so blessed to have my two boys and am enjoying every minute of this journey. My life feels complete. Now – if I can just get my husband to feed the right kid, I think we will be all right.


Birth Story: Part 2

My husband had to interrupt his viewing pleasures and leave the room for twenty minutes.  I hated that he had to leave during this procedure.  Epidurals scare me and I wanted his support.  This was also the last thing I feared so I just wanted to get through it.  Once the Anesthesiologists came in with her team, my very nice supportive nurse was going on break and substituted a not-so-friendly nurse to assist.  Crap!  I wanted her to hold my hand and give me words of encouragement but she was cold as ice.  Epidurals make me feel very faint at first.  At one point I was afraid I was going to hit the floor and become paralyzed since there was a catheter in my spine!  I know… dramatic, but this was my first thought when Mrs. Frost-y Cold Heart would not hold my hand.

The Epidural hurt much worse this time around.  I had breaks between my contractions so I could feel more of the pain in my back.  Luckily it was quick and once the nausea subsided they laid me down on my side to relax.

My husband brought back food and I watched him eat as I salivated. What’s the worse that can happen if I had a little bit of food, right?  Once the nurses left I made him sneak me some pretzels.  Let’s keep that between us.

Around 5 pm, the nurse came in to check on me.  After reviewing the monitor she asked if I could feel any pressure.  I felt some but really wasn’t sure if I was ready to push. I figured I had another few hours of labor.

“Well looks like it will be soon, so let me know when you start to feel like you have to make a bowl movement.”

Whoa! Already? About five minutes after she left the room I started to feel some pressure.  I called her back in to check me.

 “Yes, he’s ready.  Let’s start pushing!”

I started crying tears of joy.  I had only been in labor a few hours and I was about to meet my little man? My doctor then came in and proceeded to put on her gear, which looked more like she was the lead character in the Hurt Locker.

“Wow Doc, that’s some intense gear.  You would think I was about to explode on you.”

She chuckled, “You’d be surprised.”

“I don’t like surprises, so let’s keep those to a minimum.”

“Alright, let’s have a baby!”

My only complaint now was I could see a reflection in her oversized safety glasses. Yikes, is that me? Don’t look! The last thing I wanted was to see was my lady-parts pushing out a baby.  I tried to close my eyes and just focus on pushing.

I pushed for about twenty minutes.  Right toward the end the doctor told me she may have to cut me if he didn’t come out on the next push.  This must have scared the baby and more importantly me because on the next push he appeared.


Then came my favorite moment.  The one where you make eye contact with this little life you have been dreaming about for the last nine months.  It’s so powerful it brings the strongest to their knees. It is a moment I wish I could stop in time and savor more than time allows.  It is one that will make me happy for the rest of my life. My son was finally here. They put him on my chest, which is something I didn’t get to experience with my first son. It was amazing.  My husband and I both cried.  It was the perfect moment.

I was released on Wednesday just in time for Thanksgiving, which seemed fitting as I have so much to be thankful for.  Is it too early to say I already want another one?  I wonder if my husband would agree?  Wishful thinking.

Meet my little man, Alexander:


_DSC3934 _DSC3960 _DSC3976 _DSC3996





Birth Story: Part 1 of 2

The last few weeks leading up to my son’s birth were brutal.  From bed rest to being in triage three different times, I was beyond ready to meet him.  The anticipation of his birth had also starting getting the best of me.  I cried many times and went over all the ‘what if’s’ in my head on a nightly basis.  I prayed for an easy, fast, natural birth and thankfully God was listening.

At my doctor’s recommendation (along with my bladder, back and hips), I decided to get induced on my actual due date of November 25th.  I was concerned about being induced, as there is always risk for a cesarean section if your body does not cooperate.  I figured at 41 weeks the baby would be fully developed and my small body needed a break – desperately.

I was scheduled to arrive at the hospital at 11:30 am for induction.  I dropped my older son off at school and he ran in shouting, “It’s my baby brother’s birthday!” This melted my heart and curbed some of my anxiety.  I ate a nice full breakfast so I wouldn’t be starving, did my hair and makeup and headed to the hospital. Yes, I did my hair and make up. A girl needs to feel pretty right?

Once we arrived we had to wait for a room for half an hour.  It almost felt like I was checking into a hotel.  I had enough bags with me to seem that way.  By the  way – there are very few things you need to take with you to the hospital.  I should have known better but apparently I thought I would want to wear my own gowns and fix my hair.  Not the case (surprise, surprise).

The nurse finally called me back and we got set up in the room.  Mentally I knew there were only three things I was dreading, if I could get past those I would be fine.  The first was the IV.  Getting IV’s in your hands is miserable – totally faint worthy.  I warned the nurse I was a fainter and IV’s grossed me out.  With that in mind she really focused on making it as painless as possible and it worked!  I barely felt it.  One thing down, two more to go.

Let's do this!
Let’s do this!

Next I was terrified of the doctor breaking my water bag.  I have heard mixed reviews on this so I was preparing for the worst.  My doctor came in and we discussed what was going to happen next. She warned me after my water bag breaks my contractions would start to come on stronger.  I remembered this from last time, so I had my game face on.   I also had my trigger finger ready for the epidural. I had no plans on waiting to get one this time around.  Hey ­– I’m not trying to be a martyr, just trying to have a baby.  Why put myself through all that pain, right?

My water bag was broken at 1 pm at which time they also started me on Pitocin. I didn’t even feel her break my water.  Another thing down, one to go. I looked at the clock and was trying to calculate how long it would be until I could hold my son.  I know the second child comes faster and you usually dilate 1 ½ centimeter per hour once you are in active labor.  I was hoping to at least have him by 7 pm so my doctor would still be there to deliver him. Nothing worse than shift change while you’re in labor. That happened with my first child and the doctor who came in was not warm and fuzzy by any means. When you are in that much pain, you need warm and fuzzy!

Now it was just the waiting game.  My husband was lying down watching Sports Center and I was scrolling the Internet on my phone to try and pass time.  Men have it so easy, he was catching up on sports highlights while I was creating life.  Doesn’t seem fair sometimes.

Don't get up or anything...
Don’t get up or anything…

About an hour later as I’m scrolling through Facebook, they hit.  HOLY Mother of God!  I had forgotten how bad contractions actually feel.  Oh yes; now I remember – like someone is crushing your pelvis.  I allowed myself to have about a dozen to see if I could manage the pain, thenI hit the nurse’s button at 3 pm:

“May I help you?”

“Um yes, I will take that epidural now. As in, as soon as possible.”

“Great, I’ll be right there.”


Part 2 on Friday… Stay tuned!



How Does One Make Room For Two?

As I lay here reading a bedtime story to my son just days away from my due date, reality is starting to set in. Although I’m overwhelmed with excitement, I can also feel a sadness come over me. I’m sad my son has no idea his world is about to be turned upside down, sad he will now have to share me with another and sad it will no longer be just he and I.  I hope this connection between us never fades and I will always be his “super mommy” even after his brother arrives.

Being the over-analyzer that I am, I fear this new addition might take me away from him (and my husband – he deserves attention too).  This was one of the reasons I took a hiatus from the corporate world.  I could no longer give 100% to the grueling work schedule and my family.  Often times new additions result in scarifies elsewhere.

They say the greatest gift you can give a child is a sibling. I pray this reins true for my boys. I want them to love each other and share a brotherly bond no one will ever be able to break, even if it comes when they are older. I remember when my nephew first welcomed his baby brother he told my sister, “Take him back to the hospital, I’ve changed my mind.”  We laugh now but I remember it was quite overwhelming for her at the time. Trying to manage my love for two will soon be my new normal.


I just hope I’m always able to make my boys feel loved equally. Right now it seems unfathomable to expand my heart further for another child. Friends continue to tell me I will feel the same connection and love for my new baby – it’s just hard to imagine until he arrives.  For the past three years, I have just been Sebastian’s mom. This is all I know.

I hope baby Alex will love me just as much.  I hope he loves to cuddle.  I hope he looks at me with the same eyes as my son does now. Since he is my last baby, I know I will devote a lot of attention to him and I just hope it is not at the expense of Sebastian.

Life is about to change and although this is not my first rodeo, I feel like an amateur all over again.  Wish me luck.


You Are Much Stronger Than You Think You Are

When I was in labor with my son I had the most amazing nurse by my side. Being a woman with two kids of her own, her advice and support really helped me.  At one point she looked at me as I was trying to get through a painful contraction and said, “You are much stronger than you think you are.”  This wasn’t the first time I’ve heard this, but it was the first time someone said it when I desperately needed to hear it. As soon as the words left her lips I found my strength; I just had to reach for it.

After my son was born I felt so much pride and an overwhelming sense of accomplishment.  Not only did I give my son the gift of life, but I also gave myself the gift of believing – in me.  Before I left the hospital I promised myself I would not let fear stand in the way of any future aspirations.  I had a son now, one who would look to me for inspiration and guidance.  I had to deliver.

Feeling inspired from my birth experience, I signed up for the Bank of America Chicago Marathon.  Why would someone who has never run more than two miles in her life sign up for a marathon? Good question.  I signed up because deep down I didn’t think I could run it and I knew I would have to find the courage to try.  Also, as a new mom I knew it was important to find time for myself.  The training would help me continue on my journey to a healthy lifestyle and each milestone would only strengthen my confidence in myself.

I started my training in December 2010 by walking on a treadmill. My first run was on December 28. I completed 1.14 miles and thought I was going to die. The sweat was pouring off my face, my heart was pounding and my knees ached with each step. Who was I kidding?  How could I ever get to 26.2 miles? Looking for encouragement, I started reading running blogs and other marathon stories. Many of their stories sounded just like mine and their message was clear – don’t give up.

I went back to the gym and started to walk for a few minutes, then run for a few minutes. This built my stamina and helped me control my breathing. My next attempt at a long run was two weeks later.  I completed 3.34 miles without stopping. Again I felt like I would never make it to the finish line, but I was adamant about moving forward. I signed up for three races prior to the marathon.  My first was an 8K in April, the Shamrock Shuffle. This was my first taste of running an organized race.  The excitement was overwhelming.  It was much easier to run when you had thousands of people cheering you on.  I was hooked and more motivated than ever. I completed two more races, the longest being 10 miles.

Over that summer I lost some steam due to my work schedule and the heat. My runs became few and far between. I was starting to think I just didn’t have the time or energy to keep up my training.  That September I managed to get in three long runs, the longest being 16 miles.   Then I tapered off to let my body rest.  At this point I was hoping for an injury so I would have an excuse not to run, then I essentially wouldn’t be giving up.  I had family flying in and I also told all of my friends I was running, so the pressure had mounted.  They were all counting on me.

The night before the marathon my husband invited some friends over to make signs for me.  Watching my loved ones write little notes of encouragement on poster board was very emotional.  They believed in me more than I believed in myself.  Later that night I saw a quote that brought tears to my eyes and I still refer to it to this day:

“I’m a success today because I had a friend who believed in me and I didn’t have the heart to let him down.” – Abraham Lincoln

Many times when we are faced with adversity the only way we get through is by the faith others have in us. Armed with this insight I went to bed to rest my mind.  The following morning I woke early, packed all my running gear and woke my husband up to drive me.  During the short drive to the start line, we passed volunteers setting up some of the water stations and my nerves set in.  I was silent the entire ride to prevent my self from crying. My husband dropped me off and whispered in my ear, “If anyone can do this… it’s you.  You got this.”

I watched him pull away and went straight to the bathroom to throw up. After I threw up, I started laughing.  Why am I doing this to myself, it’s just a marathon.  If I make it, I make it.  The important thing is that I am going to give it my all, and that is good enough.  I headed over to my corral and waited. It took nearly an hour for my corral to finally cross the start line, as all the elite athletes start first.  I am not a fast runner nor do I strive to be.  I didn’t care to beat the Kenyans – I just wanted to finish.

As I made my way up, I remember looking at the skyline and taking a deep breath of the crisp October air and saying to myself: Well here goes nothing, just do your best.


At mile seven I knew my husband and son were waiting for me, so the first six miles flew by.  When I rounded the corner in Wrigleyville, there they were.  My husband was holding my son on his shoulders with a sign that read: I am proud of my Mommy! You can do it! This sign along with a friend jumping in to run with me gave me a boost.  It wasn’t until mile 19 I hit a wall.  I had already made it this far; I didn’t want to give up. My mind and body was telling me to stop. Then I saw two signs that gave me the final push I needed.  The first one read: While you are out can you pick me up some bread?  I laughed out loud for a few minutes.  Then a block later another read: Pain is temporary – Pride is forever!  Once those words resonated in my tired brain, it hit me – I was going to finish no matter what.

As I turned the last corner, I got very emotional. I could finally see the finish line through my tears.  I did it.  I ran 26.2 miles. I can be the example for my son. I can best equate the feeling of crossing the finish line to the day I married my husband and the day my son was born. It was nothing short of amazing.


Each time I tell this story I always get someone who says, “I could never do that.”  But that isn’t true because actually – you can. You are much stronger than you think you are.  Your goals are attainable, whatever they may be. I encourage each of you to challenge yourself, but most importantly believe – in you.

*This story will be featured on Kindredvine


Things You Can Kiss Goodbye After Having Kids

You have heard me say many times that life changes when you have kids. No matter how hard you try to hold on to your past, your future will always seem to get in the way.  Your new life will be filled with much more purpose and it will most certainly give you a new perspective; however you need to be prepared to let a few things go.  Some of the hardest things to part ways with are listed below:

  • Friends:  I have lost a few friends after having kids. In the end they expected way more of my time and attention than I was able to give.  I couldn’t balance keeping up with their lives and mine and unfortunately that wasn’t good enough. Other relationships have ceased because my idea of hanging out now entails day activities verses night activities. As much as I would love to go chug a few cocktails until the wee hours of the morning, I still have to wake up and be Mom at 7 am. Playing Mom with a hangover is pure torture. Lesson I have learned so far: To have a friend you have to be a friend, so try to reconnect as often as you can with those friends who do still make an effort to be a part of your life.
  • Money:  Makin’ it rain is a thing of the past. News flash: kids are expensive!  This is always a surprise to new parents.  You might think you have an idea of what it costs to raise a child.  Think again and while you’re at it – add a few more zeros. I remember experiencing sticker shock many times when we first had our son.  Daycare, schooling, diapers, formula, clothing, insurance and activities add up real quick. All of those weekend trips, dinners, nights on the town with friends, spa treatments – go ahead and kiss them goodbye.  Even when you do have the extra money, the guilt stops you from proceeding because you know the money could be better spent on your kids. Damn parenting guilt will get you every time! I pray every night my kid will be a pop star or a professional athlete one day so he can pay me back after he bankrupts me.  My advice: do your research so you don’t feel blind-sided, but also know you will always find a way to make it work.
What happened to all my Benjamin's?
What happened to all my Benjamin’s?
  • Your Body:  Remember that bikini body you once had? You will spend the rest of your life chasing after it once you have kids.  I know I am not the only vain one around here. We are all critical of ourselves and even if you are able to get the weight off, you will over analyze every mark on your body post-baby.  Your body changes – get over it and learn to love your new one.  I’m still working on this so no profound advice here, sorry to disappoint you.
  • Your Sleep:  All those naps I protested in Kindergarten – how do I submit a rebuttal? What I would give to take a two-hour nap every day. Sleep becomes a luxury once you have kids.  Even when your kids are sleeping, you can’t shut your mind off long enough to get the sleep you need. Your internal clock will never let you sleep in late again.  The only real uninterrupted sleep I get is when I have the Flu. Luckily Flu season is upon us!
True story...
True story…
  • Your Heart and Mind:  Every decision you make moving forward will be centered around your kids. You lie awake worrying about how you can make their life better, if you are a good parent, if you washed their favorite Batman shirt for school in the morning and if they will love you forever.  They will melt your heart telling you how much they love you, and break your heart for doing something they know they shouldn’t on a daily basis.  There is no pain greater then the look of disappointment on their face when you can’t help them when they are sick or afford that toy they want. They truly own you which is a blessing and a curse all at the same time. Prepare yourself because I guarantee you are in for a ride. 

What are things you have noticed missing from your life once you had kids? What we have gained is for another post.







Why Are Moms the Most Judgmental of All?

I’ve recently discovered when talking to other moms I often start my sentences with, “No judging but…” I do this to be funny and break the ice, however I really am setting the stage for them to put their judging hats aside.

Moms are some of the most judgmental people I have ever met when it comes to methods of parenting.  They always have advice, most of which is unsolicited. I am not sure if these actions are a result of our mother-bear instincts, the pressure society puts on us to be perfect, or because we just want to believe our way is best. Each of us have developed our own parenting skills from books, the media, parents, friends, strangers and the go ole’ trial-and-error method. From the minute of conception we are pressured to do the right things and make the right decisions.  But who is right? You? Me? Family? Oprah? Maybe the answer is – all of us.

I recently had a woman lecture me about drinking decaf coffee because I am pregnant.  She insisted the small amount of caffeine in decaf elevates the baby’s heart rate to unsafe levels, however my doctor said I could drink regular coffee everyday if I wanted to. Was this woman a doctor? All knowing? The Dali Lama in disguise? Either way, I went home and manically Googled if I was hurting my baby. Was it really necessary for her to send a pregnant woman into a panic? It wasn’t like I was taking shots of tequila while lifting heavy boxes. Geez.  Should women feel entitled to share their thoughts because they are a mom too?  When are we crossing the line and doing more harm than good?


Because this is my second child I have become accustomed to being judged by others, however I admit I do take the time to listen.  Hell, one of these b*tches actually might have something to say worthy of an ear. I have decided to just take the information and then choose whether or not to give a sh*t about what they think.  One thing I do know is that I am doing the best I can.  It is difficult to manage everything and keep up with the do’s and don’ts of parenting.  I also know that I would die for my son and love him more than words can say. I tell him I love him often, I feed him, I shelter him, and I hug and kiss him everyday.

In the end we all want what is best for our little tykes, so let’s stop with the criticizing and harsh judgments.  Aren’t we supposed to be emotional creatures and nurturing by nature?  Can’t we stand together and just criticize men instead of each other like we use to do before we had kids? What happened to the Girl Power phenomenon we all embraced in the 90’s compliments of the Spice Girls?  I, for one, would like it reinstated. What about you?


Here is a list of reasons I am considered (by some moms and most parenting websites) a bad mom:

  • I loved breastfeeding and plan to do it again with my next baby. It is FREE, and my doctor says it’s what is best for baby.
  • I don’t cloth diaper.  I know – I’m hurting the environment.  Call me lazy because that is exactly why I don’t do it. I wish I wasn’t lazy because it would save a lot of money if I did cloth diaper.
  • I don’t feed my child all organic food.  I would love to, however it is very expensive and feeding an entire family on organic food only is not an option at this time.
  • Sometimes (ok often) I let him go to bed late.  This is mostly because I love spending time with him and at times – it’s the only free time I have.
  • I let him sleep in my bed. It doesn’t bother me and one day I’m sure he will go in his own bed. Until then, I will not rush him.
  • I let him watch Little Einstein’s and other shows on Disney Junior.  Cartoons are a fun part of being a child.  Why ban them?
  • I let him play with the iPad.  It can be a great babysitter at times!
  • I let him play with my iPhone when out to dinner to get peace.
  • I don’t give him a bath every night.
  • I don’t care if he is a boy; I smother him with love and kisses and let him cry when he gets a boo-boo.  This doesn’t mean he is going to be a pansy when he gets older.
  • He doesn’t have all the latest and greatest toys.  I live in Chicago – who has space for that?

There is my dirty parenting laundry. The judging can start now.  Go!