Hey, you! (Yes, YOU.) I see you, you know. I see you in those moments when you think nobody’s looking, those moments when you’re not sucking in your tummy, when you’re yelling at your kids, when you’re serving McDonalds for dinner because you’re too tired to manage anything else. I see your panic when you realise you let down your guard for a while and showed your vulnerabilities. I see the judgement in your eyes as you assess yourself and find yourself lacking. I see your sadness. I see it through your smile, a smile so pretty that I’m left mystified by your inability to see how beautiful you are. Read the rest of this entry
“We are Jewish, so we don’t have Christmas. But we know all about Christmas and we know that all the kids in the world who celebrate Christmas get presents from you. But nobody gives you anything, so we wanted to give you a present so you could have a happy Christmas too.”Santa shook his head and looked at me again as I snapped mental pictures of my own three miracle gifts who so open-heartedly decided to reward someone else for his generosity – despite the fact that they had never been on the receiving end. Santa Clause’s eyes crinkled at the corners and he asked me, “May I give your kids a gift from my toybox?” I smiled and nodded. And that’s how my three Jewish kids found themselves in front of Santa and his toy box. They were each given a little pot, a shovel, a water squirter and some seeds. Santa smiled at me, high-fived my kids and off we went. I looked at their gifts and smiled at how the world works. If you plant seeds and nurture them, you never know what wonderfulness you might grow.
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The Ugly BeautifulsOn a recent family trip away to breathtakingly beautiful Kalbarri, a small coastal town on the West Australian coast, we spent a lot of time walking the seemingly endless length of the untouched beaches and collecting shells. In the evenings, we’d lay them all out and sort through the treasures we’d found. Kids love to sort and categorise and this was especially true for Baby G. Long after the bigger kids had gone off to do what big kids do, she could be found inspecting each and every shell and carefully considering where it belonged. She had very specific piles. She explained that The Curlies were the shells that she could hold to her ear and listen to the sea. They had curly insides and that was the part that she thought was special. Eyes glinting, she proudly showed me The Pretties, named because they were pearlescent and lovely. Seriously, she held up one of the group that looked like mini volcanoes and declared that they were called, logically, The Volcanoes. Next to these were The Interestings, named so because they couldn’t be categorised but were cool and needed to be picked up and kept, nonetheless. Finally, with a solemn face, she showed me the last of her groups and, with reverence, she declared them to be The Ugly Beautifuls. I looked down at this group of shells and inwardly giggled. They really weren’t beautiful, but she sure was accurate when it came to the “Ugly” descriptor. They looked like little brains… small whitish blobs of shell, shaped like pieces of brain. I asked her, “Baby G, why do you call these The Ugly Beautifuls?” Read the rest of this entry
“Mama, I wish I had long, straight yellow hair and blue eyes.”
That one sentence halted my world, Matrix like. In the microseconds that followed, I was forced to swallow the bitter pill that was her first yearning to be something other than herself. That one sentence had the potential to become the first brick in the foundation of the hateful self-doubt jail that so many of us women have built and locked ourselves in. That one sentence needed to be faced, head on.
I responded, faking nonchalance, “Tell me, why do you want long, straight, yellow hair and blue eyes?”
She replied (somewhat condescendingly), “Because EVERYONE knows that yellow hair and blue eyes are the prettiest kind.”
As I mentally beat Barbie to smithereens with a meat mallet and cursed Disney for Cinderella and Rapunzel, I dug deep for the right words to say to her.Read the rest of this entry
In case you’re new here, and aren’t familiar with the MOMfessional, I’ll explain. We all have secrets, don’t we? I certainly do – in fact I have so much dirty laundry, I have no choice but to air it. As bloggers, we hang it all out, every day and most of us have a strong network of friends and family who support us incredibly. This comes at a price – there are just some things that we don’t necessarily want to share with our nearest and dearest, plus the school mums, plus our work colleagues… you get the drift.Out of this situation, the MOMfessional was lovingly born to proud parents, Chris from Life Your Way and I. Without any further waffling on, welcome to the MOMfessional – a space where other parenting bloggers can let it all hang out. Some advice: Get comfortable. Today, Molley Mills from the hilarious blog, A Mother Life, is in the MOMfessional, talking about something that will (most likely) ruffle a few feathers. You see, Molley was ‘the other woman’. Read the rest of this entry
(How a doll from 1984 taught me a lesson last week.)I walked along the aisle, staring intently at box after box. Peeking at me through each cellophane window was a hopeful face that quietly implored, “Me! Me! Choose me!” I was as stressed out as an eight year old could be, torn between the one with blue eyes and blonde pigtails and the one with brown hair, dimples and green eyes. I could not believe this day had come. I was going to become a Mommy! It was 1984 and to celebrate my eighth birthday, I was adopting a Cabbage Patch Kid. This was serious business. Cabbage Patch Kids were not simply dolls, you know. They were orphans who needed mommies (orphans grown in a cabbage patch, which was slightly weird, but details…) and I felt the full weight of this immense responsibility on my little shoulders. How was I going to choose the right one? Oh, the agony of indecision. There were endless choices and combinations – dimples on one cheek or both, blonde hair in a ponytail or pigtails. Green, grey or blue eyes. This would be a decision of epic proportions. Having narrowed my choice down to pretty blonde and cute-as-a-button brunette, I decided to walk another lap and clear my mind. That’s when I saw The One. Read the rest of this entry
I have a confession: I have a slew of imaginary friends.We may never have met in the flesh (you see, they live in my iPad) but if there’s anything I’ve learned this past year, it’s this:
In July, I made the epic (nearly 30 hour) journey to Chicago from Australia for the annual BlogHer ’13 Conference, the biggest blogging conference in the world with close to six thousand attendees from around the globe. I had never met, in the traditional sense of the word, anyone who was going. Friends and family commented that I was so brave, so bold, to be going there alone and wondered how I’d pluck up the courage to walk in and face thousands of strangers. I tried (in vain) to explain that I wasn’t going alone, that I wasn’t going to be facing strangers at all. Quite the contrary Read the rest of this entry
kindness and compassion don’t need flesh and bone to be felt.
Funny bones can be tickled via keystrokes.
Friendships can be built out of pixels.