A Letter to my First Born Child

My Dear Olive,

I was 26 and not married when I found out I was going to be your mom. I must have taken 100 pregnancy tests before I believed you were true. Your daddy was excited right away, and I thought he must be crazy. What a huge responsibility had been gifted to us and I was worried. I’m just being honest here, I was scared shit-less!

 

The first time I saw your little heart beat on the ultrasound screen is the last time I ever felt alone. As you grew in my belly, I talked to you all the time. People would remark on how often I held my belly. It was some weird instinct so you would know I was there. All of the hormones and emotions were overwhelming. The most overwhelming feeling was love.

 

True to form my sweet girl, you gave mommy such an easy birth. All rainbows and unicorns. On October 24th, 2012 my heart exploded with love as you entered the world. Never in my wildest dreams could I have ever imagined feeling that way. I’ve never been the same since.

 

You will always be the little girl who made me a mom. The little girl who changed my life. The little girl who saved my life. You made me question who I was, and who I wanted to be. You made me face my past, and look forward to my future.

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You made me realize what is important in life. You showed me what unconditional love is. You showed me who my true friends were. You made me fall in love with your daddy all over again. For all of those things, I could never thank you enough. I would live through all of our newborn trials and struggles 100 times, because they taught me everything I know now.

 

It is almost impossible to believe that was all 5 years ago. I know I savored my baby time, and documented all the milestones, but it went so damn fast.

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You still teach me new things every day. I sometimes wonder how a little girl who looks just like me can be so different. You are so sweet and kind. You are so inquisitive and ambitious, and by far the most well-spoken 5-year-old I have ever met. You have taught me how to forgive those who are not kind to us. You have taught me to apologize for every mistake I make.

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You have tested my patience, and that has made me a more patient person. You’ve tested my strength, and made me a stronger person. You are such a giant part of who I am today.

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I hope I make you as proud of me as I am of you. My gorgeous first-born baby, you are amazing. It is no wonder everyone who meets you loves you. You are truly one of a kind. From your big brown eyes, to your auburn hair, to your magical smile. You make the world a better place, and you certainly make me a better person. Happy 5th birthday bunny!!!

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Mommy loves you 309020!

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The Weight Loss Conspiracy

I have a confession to make. I’ve been a little obsessed with my diet and weight loss lately. No matter what I seem to do, this last 10lbs of baby weight won’t come off. OK, so I should probably stop calling it baby weight, since my baby will be 3 this winter. Whatever it is, it’s driving me nuts and pissing me off. Just to add insult to injury, there is no good logic here. I’m an active person. I don’t eat like shit (mostly). I drink like 3 gallons of water a day. What the hell you guys? I know I’m not alone in this boat, and that helps, but really what gives? I got to thinking about it, and I think I have figured it out. Follow me here ladies;

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My Day at Chemo

So, a quick back story to a whole lot of history. I met my friend Leea at work, a department store. We had mutual friends, but didn’t become close until my computer illiteracy took over.  I needed help making a sale sign. We started talking that day 10 years ago, and haven’t shut up since.

Leea was diagnosed with breast cancer just after I gave birth to my second daughter. Being only a few years older than myself, this was shocking, to say the least. I feel like the news didn’t even sink in before Leea, the eternal optimist, was assuring everyone, that this was going to be OK. I mean, she hit cancer, and chemo, and the whole deal, head on. We have had some very candid conversations, and she never lost faith. Even on the worst of days she stayed positive.

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Father’s Day Fairy Tale

In honor of Father’s Day, I wanted to publish a piece that is very personal to me.

I often liken my life to the Cinderella fairy tale. If Cinderella’s mother had not died, but was an alcoholic junkie, who revoked her rights as mother. If Cinderella’s father had not been a king, but rather an iron working biker. OK, OK, it’s not very much like Cinderella at all. It is my fairy tale though.

So, let me take you there. . .

In the 1980’s the “single Dad” didn’t exist. Especially, not the single dad like mine. My dad was a rebel. He had long hair, rode a motorcycle, went to work, and did his thing. He wore a grim reaper ring, and took care of his giant German Shepard’s. I’m sure if someone had told him back then, he would soon be solely responsible for a baby girl, he would have told them where to go, and how to get there. He was
“that kind of guy”.  My father met my mother a few years before I was born, and made it very clear he had no interest in having children. Well, as you can see, we all don’t come from the best intentions.

In October of 1985, I was born. This long-haired rebellion, I call Daddy, fought for a healthy pregnancy, my name, and sole custody. My dad was determined to raise me. He had help, but in the early days it was just he and I. In the 80’s there were no family bathrooms, no parenting classes, and certainly no paternity leave. There was no internet full of resources, no 24-hour nurse hotlines to call, and no child care assistant programs. Traveling for work was a real challenge with an infant. Passing on jobs that would take him away for weeks, made it difficult to maintain a ” typical ” lifestyle. Not to mention, an infant car seat doesn’t exactly fit on the back of a Harley. I’m sure it wasn’t easy. I’m sure the stress was overwhelming. Not to mention entering the paradox of parenthood alone. I’m sure he was confused and scared, but I’ve never heard him mention that once.

 

It’s not like he didn’t have options. My dad could have left me with family members, and been a weekend Dad. He could have just walked away, and ventured back into my life when I was older. I wouldn’t have blamed him for taking a different path. I wouldn’t have blamed him, but I’m eternally grateful for the choice he did make.

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The influential time I spent with my father is known as “bonding time”. It’s when a baby develops senses of comfort and safety. The important time is never remembered by the child, but still shapes them into the people they become. Our take on fatherhood is so different now than it was back then. In the “baby world”, we encourage fathers to participate in pre-natal exercises and skin to skin bonding with newborns. We now understand the importance of each parent’s role in “bonding” with baby. My Dad will take his claim to fame as a trailblazer here.

 

I’ll let him tell his own story about being a trailblazer. I’ll tell you how being a product of this man has made me into who I am.

 

I am a feminist. Yep, a man raised a feminist. My dad raised me to know that when I stand up for something, I’ll be asked to sit down. Never sit down. When I am aggressive, I’ll be called a bitch. A man will be called assertive. Be aggressive anyways.

 

I was raised to be a humanitarian. When you believe in something, don’t give up. He didn’t raise a quitter.

When you are empty, give what you have, that is enough. My father taught me to love animals and people. Take in a stray animal, or person. Love is powerful, and it is your legacy.

 

He taught me empathy, which is so hard to teach. To put yourself in another’s shoes before you judge them. My dad taught me how to love, and be loved. He taught me how to stand up for myself and how to serve those who have served you.

My dad taught me how to look in the mirror and love yourself, even if no one else does. He gave me confidence and strength. He gave me love and guidance. He parented like a full-time job. Something that is rare, even today.

 

I could write to you from now until Timbuktu about all the amazing ways being the product of a single dad affected me. But I won’t, I’ll leave you with this. I was not abandoned, I was loved. I am not a tom boy. Although, I can do many tasks taught primary to men. I am not a princess, although I wear a crown. I am not afraid of men, or power, or being challenged.

 

The most curious of all perhaps, my maternal instinct. Today after 30 some years, I am a mother. I’m a Doula, specializing in post-natal care. I’m that lady, who mothers the shit out of everything and everyone. Who would have thought? All this motherly love came from a Dad.

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Happy Father’s Day to my best friend.

xoxo,

Lucy

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What Mom really wants for Mother’s Day

So, it’s Mother’s Day once again. My husband is pretending to “struggle” with what to get me. I say pretending because, I know he has a small Nordstrom bag in his car. It contains a new bottle of Chanel perfume. Props for noticing my bottle is running low. Chances are, I’ll buy myself something in a couple months and say it’s my “Mother’s Day gift”. If you want to know what your wife really wants for Mother’s Day, listen to me now men.

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Get up before wifey. Bring her a cup of coffee and tell her to come down when she is ready. Yes, I enjoy being bombarded by my husband and my sweet girls, with their sweet cards. But, I can’t fully enjoy the sweet cards and gifts without a sip of caffeine. It’s hard to feel sentimental when your children are fighting and moaning “I’m hungry”. So, feed the kids, feed the dog, feed the cat, feed whatever the F lives in your house. Let your wife enjoy her coffee in peace.

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Mom Friends You Need

A couple months ago I wrote about the moms I just can’t be friends with. You can read that here.

Mom’s I just can’t with.

Now, I want to tell you about the moms I can’t live without. If you have seen any of these mom’s in action, consider friend-ing them. If you are one of these moms, much love to you.

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Pack It All Mom- whenever you do anything with “pack it all mom”, you basically have no worries. You forgot wipes? Snacks? She’s got it, and she brought extra for your kids. She made cookies for play date and yes, they are organic and yes, she checked everyone’s allergies. Girl has got the kitchen sink organized neatly in the back of her SUV. My pack it all friend isn’t even a mom. However, she’s totally clutch in all situations. You can spot a pack it all mom, by the travel sized bottle of anti-bacterial hanging from her purse.

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Hot Mess Mom- no matter how late you are, you can count on “Hot Mess Mom” to be later. She’s frazzled, and always has a hilarious story to tell. No matter what you have done to your children, Hot Mess Mom can top it. You can tell her anything and she will just laugh. No mom shame from this lady. She didn’t even take her store-bought cookies and put them in Tupperware. “Hot Mess Mom” doesn’t care, and we love her for that.

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Bad Influence Best Friend

I know I’m not everyone’s cup of tea. I’m fine with that because I drink coffee anyway. I laugh too loud. I don’t understand boundaries, and I can be rather vulgar. With all that said, I believe everyone serves their purpose in this life.

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