Category: Parent

The Mother of All Days

I’ve never been a big holiday person. At my core, I am lazy as hell and a holiday requires effort. Don’t get me wrong; I am very willing to put effort into things that matter to me: parenting, writing, drinking whiskey, etc. But when it comes to a nationally enforced mandate to celebrate, the dissident in me comes out. A few years ago, I accidentally told my kids the Easter Bunny didn’t exist and subsequently ruined the holiday for several of their friends. I put up a Christmas tree every year and buy some presents but that’s it. Mother’s...

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The Baby Myth

The older I get, the more I’m convinced that the decisions we make in life, the ones that truly deeply change us, are by accident. We always think we have a plan. And sometimes those plans result in good things. But the turns that really upend your life, putting you in a place you never thought you’d be—those are ones we can never possibly plan for. So it was that I had children. I never professed a desire to be a mother, even in my younger years. It just didn’t seem a role that fit me. So when I...

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The Myth About Gender

When my husband and I found out we were pregnant with our first child, we agreed that we wouldn’t find out the baby’s sex.  There are few true mysteries in life, we mused, and we wanted to experience what seemed like the uncovering of a great secret.  I felt certain I was having a girl up until the moment Michael announced, “It’s a boy!”  I did not feel surprise or disappointment—dare I admit I felt somewhat relieved.  We named him Xavier and put our ‘girl name’—Zora—in our back pocket, imagining we’d use it for #2. And when we were...

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I Am Not Your Yoda

Recently as I came off the greenbelt from my early morning hike, I found myself at Austin’s central park during the Stay at Home Mom rush. It was a total madhouse. Parking lots overflowing with SUVs and minivans. Babies and toddlers crawling all over things, fumbling snacks, slinging goo, crying. Mommies, and probably some nannies and grandmas, extending nine arms toward their charges while desperately trying to nod at the appropriate intervals in each other’s conversations. There were no men. Power to stay-at-home dads and mannies, but this particular morning was Estrogenfest. And total chaos. Except for one group...

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Birth & Mortality

700 to 800 US women die each year during pregnancy or shortly after giving birth. I was almost one of them. I lost about 4 liters of blood on the operating table. (Estimates are an adult body has 4.5-6 liters, depending on weight.) My twin sister said that when the doctor came out to announce I had a healthy daughter, she was literally dripping in blood. It looked like a murder scene. It was not supposed to be my daughter’s birthday. It was July, and she wasn’t due until late August. I am a single parent, intentionally, so can...

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