To my daughter on her second birthday,
And like that, she’s two
I packed up your high chair the other day, you no longer use it. These days you insist on sitting in a chair at the table, just like your big sister. You’ve become her twin, her shadow, over the past few months. There is no where she goes, that you do not follow. It can be both adorable and frustrating as I try to keep you both in line. Continue reading
Fly little one
Dear daughter, a letter on your fourth birthday.
You are the one who made me a mother. You are the one who changed my world. And this year, you are four.
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
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.
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
On the days when my arms are full but my heart is not, I try to remember why.
When everyone needs something right now, and I just don’t feel like I have anything left in me to give, I try to remember.
When they’ve already eaten lunch and are asking for snacks but I haven’t even started my breakfast, I force myself to remember.
If your house is anything like mine, your dryer lint has made its annual change-over from glittery* pink fuzz to glittery* red fuzz, the universal signal that Christmastime is once again upon us.
*this family has an unsustainable glitter habit
Dear daughter, today you turn three. And although I will miss your tiny little voice, and your tiny face, I am excited for the year ahead of us.
This year you surprised me in so many ways. Your personality is clearer than ever. You are the charming little weirdo with a great laugh who is quick to use it. You’re brave, braver than I could have ever hoped you would be. Whether it’s facing down the dentist for the first time or spending your first nights away from me, you’ve gone at it all with the same determination. Continue reading
Shit changes fast around here, and as soon as I’m used to the current state of things, it changes again.
I’m still in survival mode. I say still because I think I shifted into it somewhere around my sixth month of pregnancy, maybe somewhere around my second round of strep throat? The “baby” is now almost seven months. It’s been a while. Maybe it’s not even really survival mode when you’re coming up on the one year mark. Maybe this is just my life now.
I’m okay with it. Because between the old life and the new, the moves and the changes, we’re all managing to survive. And that’s good enough for me.
Stuff, stuff everywhere…
Today marks two weeks since we moved into our new house. All the rooms are still piled high with boxes. We arrange and then rearrange while we try and figure out where to put all of these toys. Every time I think I’m making progress I find another box, jam packed with more brightly colored crap. I am inclined to think that Pandora’s Box was just full of mismatched doll outfits and random Lego pieces. Continue reading