Lauren Wellbank

experiences may vary

Year: 2018 (page 1 of 2)

A letter to my daughter on her fourth birthday

Spread your wings, daughter

Fly little one

Dear daughter, a letter on your fourth birthday. 

Dear daughter,

You are the one who made me a mother. You are the one who changed my world. And this year, you are four.


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The bullying doesn’t stop, it just changes


The first time I was teased about the way I looked I was in elementary school. We were sitting in class when the boy sitting next to me said something about my hair. Then the boy next to him joined in, and another boy on the other side of me jumped in, and my first nickname was born: Medusa. Continue reading

How millennials are ruining Thanksgiving

The holidays are upon us

Dearest millennial host,

It’s me, your 19 pound turkey, dropping in with a very important message about Thanksgiving. I know a written letter seems a little formal, especially since you are about to be wrist deep inside of me, but it’s pretty hard to get your attention any other way.
For example, do you remember the other day when you thought you heard a noise coming from your trunk while you were on your way home from the grocery store? Well, that was me trying to get your attention.

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Twas the night before cold and flu season

My “cold and flu season” decorations are finally up.

Twas the night before cold and flu season…

Twas the night before [insert thing I was looking forward to doing here], when all through the house, not a child was sleeping, not even with their favorite stuffed mouse;

Their outfits for tomorrow had been laid out with care, in the hope it would speed up our morning routine if we prepared.

Instead I found children piled high in our bed, sniffling, and sneezing as we held damp towels to their heads

I should have realized it yesterday, when my youngest went down easily for her nap, my carefully planned schedule was about to go to crap. Continue reading

I’m another year older

Look at the Tigger hat, look at it!

1994 maybe?

I’m grateful to wake up another year older today. I know it’s an experience denied so many.

After being serenaded by my kids, and eating a wonderful breakfast cooked by my amazing husband, I answered the age old question, “Do you feel any different?”

The short answer, no. Continue reading

Hello, I’m the failed wife

A letter of thanks from the formerly failed wife.

When I initially wrote this piece for Huffington Post about my whirlwind journey from wife to ex-wife, I didn’t really expect much to come of it. Honestly, I assumed a few people would read it out of morbid curiosity and then never give it a second thought. Fortunately, I’m very used to being wrong.

Since the piece went live Friday morning I have been receiving emails and private messages from people who have experienced similar “failures.” It’s been unbelievable, and I promise I am going to respond to each and every email, message, and comment that I have received as soon as I can think of something more eloquent to say than, “Oh my god, thank you.”

Our Friday the 13th cake topper

Eight years ago, when all of this happened I felt lower than I ever thought was possible. I was sad and hurt and angry – so angry – that I thought there would never be an “after” for me. No, I wasn’t going to feel better after some time had passed. I wouldn’t look back on the experience afterwards and gain some sort of insight that I didn’t have before. My pain would only lengthen with time, it wouldn’t lessen. It would remain tethered to my heart, like a balloon on a string, and it would follow me into every relationship and experiences for the rest of my life. I would always be under its shadow, and it would always taint everything in my life.

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Fireworks and Summer Reading Lists

The Fourth of July is finally upon us. I can tell thanks to the sweet, subtle sounds of shit exploding outside my house. The relentless ballistics begin around supper and continue until well after I’ve passed out for the night #merica.

Don’t judge my collection

The familiar percussion, while equally obnoxious and annoying when you have two sleeping toddlers, serve as a reminder that summer is already half over. And to that I say, yaaaaaay. Continue reading

My other soulmate

Shit on technology and social media all you want, but I swear it saved my life.

Okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration. It didn’t quite save my life, but it did save my relationship with my best friend. And really, that’s kinda the same thing. It all started in 2006, when my childhood BFF found me on MySpace.

We had lost touch when my mother and I moved from Florida to Pennsylvania in the mid 90’s. Those were simpler times, back before email and text messaging.

The two of us exchanged handwritten letters and care packages. We caught up over the phone when both of our single mother’s had room in their budgets for long distance calls, which was not often.

I left Florida, and Bethany, the summer before high school started. The transition from middle school to high school is hard enough, even when you’re not hundreds of miles away from the best best friend you have ever known. But we were teenagers, and things were happening. Our lives were changing and we needed to change along with them. And adapt. Before long the letters slowed down, the calls dried up, and I made one final visit back to Florida. It was the last time I saw Bethany.

At least, I thought it would be the last time. But life changed again, the world changed again, and we changed right along with it. Social media became a thing. And again, shit on it all you want but that day I received a notification that I had a connection request on Myspace, my life changed… again. We picked right back up where we left off.

We didn’t see each other for another few years. It was in 2010 when she flew in the night before I was to marry my now ex-husband. We stayed up so late that night, giggling under the covers in my old room at my parent’s house. My mom eventually had to come into the room and tell us it was time for bed.

It was like we had traveled through time. We were suddenly back in the duplex my mom and I shared in Florida when I was growing up. Everything seemed right with the world now that I had my oldest friend back by my side. That next day she sat with the rest of my family and friends, and cried tears of joy right along with my mom.

We had successfully rekindled our friendship after almost a decade of lost contact. And thanks to technology, it was nearly effortless to maintain now.

We could text, exchange emails, and like photos of eachother on Facebook. I loved her Halloween costumes, she made fun of my cats. And we could let each other know immediately, even when years had passed since the last time we were face-to-face.

When I got divorced she was there for me whenever I needed to talk, even all those miles away.

When I started dating again she stalked my boyfriend on Facebook (RIP MySpace).

We took trips and shared girl’s weekends together. We talked about our hopes and dreams of becoming professional writers.

In 2014 she was there for my baby shower. And in 2015 she was by my side during my wedding.

These days we talk more than ever. Thanks to SnapChat and Facebook messenger we are in near constant contact. We exchange pictures of our frustrated faces at the end of a long day.

She sends me videos of her goats and chickens from her mountain in Tennessee. I send videos of my daughter taking her first steps or the squeaky yet hilarious messages from my toddler up here in Pennsylvania.

It’s like we’re still in the same town. Back when we were two awkward and ridiculous teenagers, being raised by our mothers who seemed to have some sort of joint custody arrangement with one another. Each of us spending a week at one house, than a week at the other. She was my best friend, my sister, and my soulmate. I don’t know how I made it all those years in between without her, but thanks to technology, I’ll never have to do it again.


Happy birthday to my baby who isn’t a baby anymore

The birthday girl

Happy first birthday, little one.

I can hardly believe it’s already been a year. This time has somehow managed to both fly by, and drag on forever. The first year is always hard. You arrive a frail helpless baby who needs me for absolutely everything, and you grow into this waddling, laughing force of nature with a voice and strength that surprises me.

That laugh, the way that it wrinkles your whole face. Your cheeks are still plump and full and I hope that never changes. I also hope you never tire of me kissing them because I don’t think that I ever will. Continue reading

Kids ruin things, but it’s okay

Becoming a parent is a life altering event. You go from being in charge of just you, to having this whole other human being that relies on you for everything. They also somehow quadruple your laundry load.

It’s intense. And it colors everything in your world. Suddenly you find yourself wearing these parenting glasses that change the way you view everything. It’s like Predator vision, only everything is in primary colors and has soft rounded edges because holy shit everything is a death trap.

The Wellbanks before we were both Wellbanks

It’s great, because kids are awesome and great (and I’m just going to keep saying great over and over again because I have a three-year-old and it’s great Great. Great. Great.) Continue reading

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