Family and Motherhood

MEDIOCRE

I leaned out the window of my ‘99 Hyundai Accent. “FREE THE LEASH KIDS!” I yelled. A mom walked along the sidewalk, her toddler with a monkey leash backpack running ahead.  Everyone is an amazing parent before they have kids. I was a great babysitter. I came prepared with crafts and activities. I cleaned up messes before the parents got home. I stuck to schedules enough to keep the parents happy, but bent them enough to delight the kids. I was awesome. “How hard can parenting be?” I thought. “You just have to be firm and calm with the kids.”  When I was pregnant with my first child, I had beautiful plans. He would never sleep with me. He would eat only healthy, homemade food. I would never yell.  Then he was born. “Sleep when the baby sleeps!” they told me. But my baby didn’t sleep. My bab...

THE PERFECT ANSWER

Life from the beginning was far from perfect. I was raised by a single mother, from the tender age of four and a half. My father decided to follow his heart as a man rather than his responsibilities as a husband and father, and consequently left my mother with no choice but to pick up those broken pieces.   I remember feeling absolute anger, sadness, and confusion, and amidst these conflicting feelings, I was trying to find an answer, why. I tried to piece back the broken pieces together, with ‘why’ as the glue.   I was trying to find the perfect answer.  I believe I was subconsciously trying to find the perfect answer for my father not being present. As I was also subconsciously trying to find the perfect answer as to why laughing and smiling are rare occasions for my mother. Without a do...

COFFEE

Ever seen her cry or is she the one to dry your eyes? Is it the way she carries her self-confidence or the way she moves with her dominance! She’s fierce and intense with a sixth sense is that too much suspense? You think of who while I think of her. You think of others but I know it’s my mother. As she sits with her cup of coffee. Coffee as strong as her.   Author: Janet Martinez Email: jm67979@gmail.com Author Bio: My name is Janet Martinez a mother to three boys. I am a full-time parent and decided to go back to college to get my associate’s degree in visual arts. My graduation date is expected to be May of 2019. I love art and anything that it consis such as painting and writing. If I had to choose, writing poetry or writing in general would be my dream job. I ha...

I CAN HAVE IT ALL: THE HARDSHIPS OF WORKING AS A MOM

This month has been tough. There’s been a lot of realizations in both my role as a mom and someone who works. My situation is a little different, mainly being a stay-at-home mom, but I also work as a freelance video editor/marketing manager in the little time I have during naps and when the baby goes to sleep. The beauty of freelancing is that I can make my schedule and take work that I want. The only thing I didn’t realize was how easy it was for me to overbook myself. I felt that I had this whole “being a mom” thing under control, but boy was I wrong, and I had a brutal wake up call. For months I have been doing work here and there, marketing for a local production company and some one-off video editing work. It was pretty good because I could do a lot of this during nap time and even wo...

CHANGE YOUR PERSPECTIVE

Changing your perspective can truly change how you parent. Many parents see their children as difficult, delicate, fragile, limited, needy, or incapable. Clients come to me expressing how strong-willed their children are or how stubborn, determined, or persistent they can be. Well, I say, “Those are some great traits to have as adults.” Wouldn’t you agree? So why not guide them in the right direction, where they can still have those traits and you are still in charge. Your children are not aliens that are impossible to understand. They are just smaller human beings looking for the same things we need as adults.   As adults, we need rules, words of affirmation, discipline, and consistency as much as our children do. These are the things that make us feel in control, safe, loved, and success...

MAKING BABIES FOR SOMEONE ELSE

In 2015,  I experienced infidelity, pregnancy loss, a new job, single motherhood, the financial stress of separation and divorce, and my son reacting to all this upheaval, along with the series of firsts as a single mom: first new apartment, first solo day of school, first solo Halloween, first year of solo Christmas planning, etc . It was, to say the least, a very stressful time.  I had always wanted more children but made a personal decision after my marriage failed this that my son and I along with our new puppy were perfect as a trio.  No missing pieces, but a real family – full stop. That being said, I had a fairly easy pregnancy with him and frankly, loved the sidecar of pregnant life: gender reveals, ultrasounds, bump clothing and the way my body looked, etc. While no one wake...

MOTHERHOOD (AND PRETENDING IT WAS EASY)

It isn’t easy. Sometimes you might not even feel okay. Sometimes the distance to the coffee machine in the morning can seem overwhelming. Not to mention the distance to bedtime. And sometimes it gets lonely, and it isn’t even about adult interaction. It’s that special adult, your rock, whether that’s your partner, best friend or family. And you try to explain this occasionally, tears and exhaustion stinging, but the only ones who (I’ve found) truly understand have been there themselves. The mom tribe. Because even though all the above might be true, so is this. You’re in love, madly and completely, with this tiny human. You cherish every second spent together, even while balancing the wish for a few more hours of snoozing next to each other. Every laugh, every reaction, every time your hug...

BECOMING A MOMPRENEUR

I have been procrastinating writing this for a couple weeks now. That’s a long time to avoid doing something for me, given that I feel an anxious itch every time I know there’s something I’m supposed to do and am consciously avoiding. I am of the “get-it-done-ASAP-and-cross-it-off-the-list” ilk; the crossing out motion gives me an inordinate amount of satisfaction. Perhaps I’m avoiding this because I feel like the theme is cliché. Or perhaps because I know that these truths of mine are not admirable or cheer-worthy. But I don’t think these are my truths alone. Hi everyone, I’m Marlo. I’m a mompreneur. While spellcheck doesn’t recognize ‘mompreneur’ as a word from the English language, I am confident that 99 percent of people reading this will have seen the word before or can in...

DIMMING YOUR LIGHT, DIMS YOUR SUCCESS

As my story goes, I never wanted to be married with children. I wanted the big career. I wanted to explore the world. I wanted success; although as a child I had no idea how to measure that aside from money. In our home, finances were discussed often and passionately. I remember being around 10 years old and sitting on the stairs listening to my parents worry about money. I remember clearly how this became my worry too.  My father would say, repeatedly, go to school, get a good job and depend on no one. I took these words to heart. I was terrified of money. My education was all that mattered. I was in enriched programs, an A-student and I achieved without much effort. I knew by 14 I wanted to be an accountant, how exciting?  Academics for me were always the easy part of the equation, roman...

MY MOTHER’S DEATH: ONE OF THE MOST TRANSCENDENT MOMENTS OF MY LIFE

My mother died on August 24, 2000. The day of her passing was one of the most transcendent moments of my life. That morning, she told my sister and me: “I want to go to the international food market in Santa Monica.” That was like Disneyland for her; she’d leave with baskets full of food, fruit and goodies for everyone. So we took her there. My mother in her fragile little body, still filled with a zest for life, bought salamis and cheese, olives, halvah, Viennese and Greek chocolates and nuts, and by the end, we had bags and bags of food to haul home. It was surreal, taking her out into the world after all the time she had spent in the hospital and then at home with congestive heart failure. We wanted to say to the checkout clerk: “You don’t seem to understand what is happening here. This...

HEAVEN GAINED A NEW ANGEL

She passed away on a summer Sunday afternoon. Shades drawn and family near. She waited with each shallow breath to say goodbye. Goodbye to all nine of her now grown children. Goodbye to all 29 of now grown grandchildren. She waited for the “I love you’s” and the “We’re going to be okay’s” She waited, and waited, as they drove and flew from miles and miles away. Because that was her… Even in her final act.. She wanted us all to be together. She always wanted us all together. Together and well fed. I wish I would have said more, but I don’t think you ever know how to really say goodbye. So I hope someone whispered in her ear that her homemade frosting will never be forgotten. That Christmas Eve was nothing short of magical, with tinsel de...

I DON’T HAVE CUSTODY OF MY CHILDREN AND WHAT THAT MEANS

Due to a mental illness that left me confused and debilitated for over two years, I made the difficult but ultimately selfless decision to not have custody of my children. What does that mean? For the longest time I did not know. Who am I if I am not first and foremost their mother?   Their father is their primary caregiver, their legal and physical guardian their number one, their go-to guy. And this can be and was a crushing arrangement. But it was necessary.   This means I no longer get bath time or the nightly bedtime story. This means I don’t get to pick out what they will wear for the day, or be the first one to hear what new things they have to say. I wasn’t there to witness the first time my daughter went potty “like a big girl,” or to see my son learn about Christ at chu...

Lost Password

Register