MERRY FUCKING CHRISTMAS: EPISODE FOUR

Holy fuck you guys. It’s fucking Christmas time all fucking ready.

Can you fucking believe that?

OH MY GOD IT FEELS GOOD TO SAY FUCK so much again.

If you kindly follow my blog you may have noticed I haven’t written anything since… June-ish or so. I promise you it’s not because I didn’t have anything to say. I have ALL THE THINGS TO SAY. It’s because I’ve been up to my MOTHER FUCKING EYEBALLS in parenting, work, other work, some other work, and some more work after that.

Sigh. More on that later. Continue reading

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RAW

There’s something about that third baby that unravels you.

Maybe it’s the sheer exhaustion of having three kids to raise. Maybe it’s knowing what’s ahead and what’s behind and what that means for the right now.  Maybe it’s just because it has to be for you to survive.

Or maybe, for me, it’s just because I’ve changed that much between two and three. I had nearly nine years to recreate my life after all. Maybe I just did a better job this time.

Maybe I’m more prepared, or maybe I’ve just accepted how difficult this part is.

This baby has softened my edges and stretched my perceptions, my roles, and pushed me to hit a reset button, again, but harder.    Continue reading

HOT MESS

Five weeks.

Baby #3 is five weeks old already. It feels like it’s been five years, and also, five minutes all at once. And you guys, I’m so fucking. . .

TIRED.

You thought I was going to say in love didn’t you?

No. Tired. I am fucking exhausted as fuck.

I mean, yes I am in love with my baby. Over the moon, practically first time mother level to be quite honest. My social feeds are ridiculous and phone’s memory has been evaporated by baby pictures. This little boy is so fucking CUUUUTTTTEEE.

But that’s not my point, today. He is adorable. I am delighted to be a mother again. But I am also, as you may have caught on— Continue reading

ALL I (GOTTA) DO IS ZOOMA ZOOM ZOOM

I absolutely adore Mondays.

Yes. Me. I love them. They’re my favorite. Better than Friday even.

Mondays are my vibe day. My creative day. My wear yoga clothes all day, day, my big hearty breakfast day, my work from home in my beautiful office, seated in my cushy turquoise chair, sunlight streaming in the window and warming my feet as I type and schedule and research and drink coffee and and play music day.

On Mondays the kids always get to school on time.

Doesn’t that sound just perfect?

Tuesdays, usually we’re on time. By Wednesdays we’re playing with tardy slip fire. And then the week wraps up, and I’ve gone to a half dozen meetings, a handful of events, written a thousand e-mails, spent three hours on the phone, made eye contact with my husband, cooked meals while helping with homework, played a board game or five, and gotten everyone everywhere to all their things somewhat close to on time. Continue reading

MAMA DON’T (SHARE)

Yesterday, Sunday, I found out that my son had his first cub scouts meeting on Wednesday.

Like, five days ago Wednesday.

And I just found out about it.

FUCK.

Now, I know I’m busy, and I sometimes forget things, like, say, my own lunch, but I don’t forget shit like my son’s first cub scout meeting.

Nope.

Because he’s my son. Mine. My child. And his sister? Also MY child. My job. Me. I handle all the kid things. ME. I do them. By my damn self.

Except now I don’t.  

I’ve had an ex-husband for over five years, and for most of that I was rolling 100% solo. There was no co-parenting, no shared decision making. Just one chair filled at parent-teacher conferences, just one seat in the stands at the soccer game. Just me, and my kids. Continue reading

TOWARDS THE SUN

It’s finally the Monday After (Christmas). My house is quiet while I work, checking emails, surveying the results of an intense five weeks, identifying what’s now ahead.

My kids are gone to their dad’s for the week, my husband is lost down an NPR rabbit hole and I’ve already put away and deep cleaned my way out of the holiday that threw up on my living room floor so I can focus on things that are new, and clean, and fresh.

 

Like my intentions. And my perspective. And my profound gratitude for my life.

 

Christmas Day was so different this year. Quiet, cozy, still. No loud houseful of people, no noisy dinner with glasses clinking, inappropriate jokes and deep belly laughs. No cousins running up and down the stairwell, and aunts and uncles pretending to scold them. No new bikes being ridden, skates being used, and long cold winter walks in new hats and scarves and mittens, not that I’ve had a Christmas like in that in a long long time anyway.  Continue reading

MERRY FUCKING CHRISTMAS: THE SECOND EPISODE

It’s that time of year again, uh, again.  You know that one. Where your life’s choices are mocked at the dinner table, your little brother wins the best child award for the 27th year in a row, and you spend a lot of quality time with reinforced lycra.

Or maybe that’s just me. . .

Last year, I wrote the first edition of Merry Fucking Christmas and managed to piss off my own family to the point of social media disownment, and this year, having learned my lesson, I’m going to um, well, to be quite frank,

Give zero fucks and do it again.

Because this is real life people, and telling any other story would be a half-truth. So, in the name of authenticity and good humor, I offer you:  

(STILL) NOT ANOTHER FUCKING CHRISTMAS LETTER

Dear Friends, Family, and People That Don’t Fit In Either Category.

Happy whatever-you’re-celebrating-this-month. Vodka, Gin, Red wine. Whatever floats your. . . spirits. Oh, and Happy all those other real things too. Really. Cheers to celebrating family, blessings, triumphs, heroes, saviors, endurance, and love. Continue reading

HEY MAMA

Today I celebrate the tenth birthday of my daughter.  She’s ten. A decade. 3,652 days (you know, plus leap years?) old.

Parenthood, well that escalated quickly.

But seriously, when people say “the days are long but the years are fast,” they aren’t fucking kidding. Continue reading

LOVE YOU LIKE I DO

You know how sometimes you think you’ve learned a lesson, and then you roll along all normal-like, thinking you’ve finally rid yourself of said undesirable behavior and then. . . BOOM.

There it is again.

Right there. In your face. All.Over.Again.

Yes, so like real life. Cycles of inquiry, layers of un-peeling, incremental growth and owning your shit. That’s my meditation revelation. Continue reading

(I’M FEELING) HAPPY

I leave for Africa today.

Gulp.

By Tuesday evening I’ll be staring at a sky full of stars in the southern hemisphere.

Holy.Shit.

I’m not even going to pretend that’s not blowing my mind a little.

 

My heart is bursting at the seams. There is light shining out of my face. Out of my fingers. Out of my soul.

I.am.so.excited.

The obstacles I have overcome to get to this place, including but not limited to the three (very recent) attempts to leave North Carolina to get back to California to fly back across the country (fewer than 24 hours later) to jump over the pond to get to the other side (of the world) have been . . . exhausting. Challenging. A bit, um. . . unstable, uncertain, and unpredictable.

You know, kinda like life.

 

There have been moments when I was pretty sure I was going to sell my car to finish raising the required funds for the Africa Yoga Project. There have been hours where I was so overwhelmed by the work in front of me I chose to shut down and do absolutely nothing. There have been days where I felt irresponsible for leaving my kids and my students in the middle of the school year.

But I pushed through anyway. Because I can. Because I do. Because I know.

Every setback was resolved through release. Every obstacle overcome with a few creative pivots, some crafty adjustments, an open mind, and the willingness to ask for, and receive, help.

I’m not bullshitting you.

I could tell endless stories about what has occurred to make this happen. I could share anecdotes that reveal how I reaffirmed repeatedly that I was doing the right thing. I could go on, and on, and on.

But I won’t.

 

I’ll just share this one, actually. Because this one — it’s enough.

Last week during a conversation with my daughter we somehow landed on the topic of parents and children and how they are alike. This led to a discussion about her perception of me, as in, when she says she is like me, what does that mean? What does she think I am “like?”

Here’s the short version— happy. My kid sees me as happy. In her words, I’m happy “like almost all the time.”

I could not possibly ask for more. No way. No how. To me, this is the greatest form of validation I could ask for. My kids perceive me as happy. They can articulate to me the ways in which they see that manifested in our lives. And, more importantly, they can identify that it is a choice, one that I keep making every day in the way that I choose to live.

They get it.

My kids know I’m happy.

I know then, that they are too. I know then, that they will continue to be. I know then, that the work I’ve been doing the last few years— defining my purpose, listening to my gut, refusing to return to conventional, normal, predictable, or to take “safe bets,” has been a total win.

Mission. Accomplished.

Happiness is a choice. It’s mine, and it’s theirs too.

I’m leaving for Africa, and I’m happy.

I hope, most sincerely, that you are choosing to be too. Life is beautiful. Go and get yours.

 Try. Fail. Learn. Repeat.
 Be happy.

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