It is not your fault. It is not always your fault that you are all alone. It is the nature of the beast. It is the way you were raised, it is inherent in you, and sadly, you cannot change it because you are a teenager and you simply don’t have the ability to do so. Your brain is not fully developed, your hormones are raging, and you are angry. I know. And I have failed you. I have failed you because I am so often at a loss as to how to help you. You tell me I don’t understand, and you are right. I was not there for 9 years of your life, 9 of the most formative years of your life. I do not know what you went through, I do not know what happened to you, I do not know how to manage all the feelings and emotions you try so hard to suppress.
“Read me another chapter, Mommy” is the nightly mantra in our house as I turn off lights and tuck in covers… there is no end to the creative ways my children will find to get me to read them more stories. And I know, this doesn’t seem like it should be a problem, and it’s really not, but as we already read at least five story books and two chapters of whatever series we are currently engaged in nightly, there truly isn’t enough time. As an avid reader myself, and the progeny of a lawyer and an educator, it is no surprise my children love books. My gift from my parents for my 1st pregnancy was a full-size crib FULL OF BOOKS… and I mean full. Since then I have carried on this collection as I too love children’s books.
Although it seems like it’s been around forever, body shaming is a relatively new issue facing our young girls today. The age of social media and reality television has taken the act of critically looking at women’s bodies away from scouts of runway models and puts it into the hands of every person who has a smartphone. Even before this new generation of technology, women were praised looking a certain way, but the era of photoshopped magazine covers and edited Instagram photos have given us regular folks a false sense of what a person’s body – no matter their size – actually looks outside of staged shoots.
When thinking about getting on a plane with two 4 year olds and flying 5 hours across the country just to spend 2 days hiking and then repeat it all over again to get back home, most moms would start hyperventilating. It’s true, preschoolers aren’t the easiest to hang out with in general, then put them in a tin can for hours straight and the resulting nightmare can give anyone a heart attack. Between the why’s and the constant whining and the snacks and having to sit still for 5 hours, you would think that the majority of sane people do not plan short stints across the country. And we say they are missing out!
Travis and I have a tendency of describing the stage of life we’re in just like this, “Oh, we’re in the TRENCHES.” I’m pretty sure the “trenches” part comes across a bit dramatic, but it’s true. We have 4 kids under 5.5 years of age. If that’s not the trenches (at least of parenthood), then I don’t know what is. We have one in kindergarten, two in diapers, three who need help brushing their teeth and wiping their bums, and four crazy-different-awesome-unique-scary-smart-challenging personalities.
In the summer of 2008, one July morning, I woke up feeling very dizzy. It was a hot day so I thought it was the heat… But when I saw myself in the mirror, I noticed I couldn’t move my eyeballs. They were stuck looking forward. I called a friend of the family who is a neurologist and asked him to recommend a good ophthalmologist. When he asked me for my symptoms, he was alarmed and asked me to come to his office first. After my examination, he said he wanted an MRI of my head to discard the possibility of Multiple Sclerosis. I immediately went to get tested and the picture revealed white spots on my brain, my neurons were attacked by my own immune system: I have MS.
Meet Oyuki Aguilar – who turned a devastating illness into a mission for the children yet to come into her life. Discover – The Sport Of Parenting.
Soon after the doctor confirmed the news and lab results (spinal fluid from her back) proved that she was in the early stages, Oyuki took cortisone to bring the inflammation of her optic nerves down and the swelling was gone within a couple of days. But what next? She decided to write a book, and currently lives through the moments as each day blinks by. Her mission: To leave a legacy of her life’s lessons to her children.
I have one piece of advice for expectant parents about to embark on the journey of brand new parenthood. Just one thing, and I will share it unsolicited because I think it is that important, and I am confident that if you can follow this advice, your first year of parenthood will be a lot less stressful for you, your partner and your baby. It is something I realized early on and it continues to guide my parenting today. Are you ready? Here it is:
The things you do to keep your baby calm today are not habits that will last a lifetime!
The number of families in America with only children is steadily growing. While you might have multiple children, you are sure to know some only children. Many people have strong opinions about only children and opinions about family size in general. One kid isn’t enough, four kids is too much! Ever wonder what it is like to be the mom of an only child? Here are some heartfelt thoughts and confessions from two of our Daily Moms with only children, Cindy and Kristen.
I don’t know how it happened. It’s cliche but it’s true. It seems like yesterday the nurse placed her in my arms for the first time and boom – I was a mom. Now here we are, nearly five years later, and we are getting ready to send this bright eyed little girl who loves to change her clothes 18748324 times per day to a school, all day, with a uniform. We are taking this tiny being, who just yesterday it seems was a squishy newborn and pushing her out into the real world.
I have all sorts of doubts about this. I’m nervous. I’m excited. I’m worried. I’m scared. Is the world ready for this fierce little girl with a sassy attitude? Is she ready to stand up for herself when people tell her she can’t? Am I ready to take a step back – to let her follow her own path, be her own person, and let her out of this bubble I have created for her?
Shortly after my first child was born, an online friend of mine lost her baby. She was 7 months old. There are no words to describe a loss like that. No words of comfort. No words of peace. There is just a void that is felt in your world – a gut wrenching emptiness that grasps the very core of your being and doesn’t ever let go. And those were just my feelings – for the loss of a child of a woman I barely knew. My heart ached for her. I cried for her. I weeped for her sweet baby. And then I weeped for my sweet baby as thoughts of “what ifs” played through my head over and over again in the days that followed.
There are dozens of blog posts spiraling virally through the realm of the social media world lately about things that we absolutely should and shouldn’t be telling our daughters – things that will supposedly be detrimental to their emotional growth and development and drastically influence their educational, social and future career path decisions.
If you’ve seen any of these posts, they might have ignited a fear deep within you, leaving you questioning yourself and your simple day-to-day interactions with your daughter. One post passionately insinuates that you are setting your daughter up for a lifetime of unfulfilled potential by telling her that she’s pretty. Another suggests that telling her she is smart will boost her ego too much, and instill in her unrealistic fabrications of her intelligence, setting her up for disappointment and rejection later in life.
Depression has been something that has clung to me like an unwanted acquaintance, and it became more prevalent after my first daughter was born. It has taken over significant chunks of my life and ruined times that I should have been reveling in the magic of our growing family. I wish it wasn’t a part of me, and I have done my best to keep it batted down from affecting those I love the most. But there are times where it rears its ugly head and there seems to be nothing I can do from stopping it.
I have had some level of postpartum depression with each subsequent birth of my three daughters. However, after my last child was born in November of 2015 my postpartum depression took a dive into the darkest parts of my soul and brought out a person I did not recognize. I am now able to look back from the other side, and this letter is to the people most affected by those negative days.
Happy Mother’s Day to all of you beautiful mothers out there! Here at Daily Mom we are known for bringing you useful and informative articles packed with gorgeous photography. We are a fun loving group of moms, but you certainly shouldn’t let that fool you. Like many of you, many of our days end in tears and frustration and some days we aren’t entirely sure that we are cut out for this mothering gig. Though we all have different parenting styles and fight different daily battles, one thing is for certain – we all love our children to pieces.
In honor of Mother’s Day, today we are getting “real” with you and bringing you a little bit of real life from all the wonderful moms who make up our team.
As soon as we find out we’re carrying a child, self-doubt begins to creep into our thoughts. We read, observe, question, wonder and worry about everything from pregnancy to when our children will grow old. Having a child is life-altering and can often leave a woman feeling inadequate with the responsibility of raising another human being. It should come naturally, right? Wrong! When I gave birth I use to say, “each child should come out with their own manual.” Like when you bring home a new appliance; the manual comes with directions, troubleshooting, and what to do if you need to exchange it or return it.
Honestly, it would have been easier having a manual than stressing for years figuring out what to do with each child. This was especially true after I brought home my third child who was born with a birth defect. Here I thought I had motherhood down after getting my other children through toddlerhood. Now I needed a whole other manual for child number three.
Today I would like to share my personal story about how bed-sharing and co-sleeping has worked and continues to work for me and my family- despite the negativity sometimes associated with it.
From the moment my little girl was born I had this overwhelming need to have her close to me at all times. I would carry her around in my arms constantly, despite remarks such as:
“Put her down.”
“She needs to learn to be by herself.”
“You are getting her into bad habits by holding her all the time.”
“You are spoiling her.”
And this need persisted even at bedtime. I wanted her right next to me in the tiny, uncomfortable hospital bed, just the two of us together.