Category Archives: Saturday SHOUT Out

Shout Out– Chopping Potatoes

Standard

Good morning and Happy June!  Can you believe how fast this year is going by?  It seems like time has sped up exponentially since I had children, but then, many things have changed since becoming a mom–  my weight and body shape, my freedom, my schedule, and my sleep.

Perhaps the most changeable feature of motherhood, for me and for many, is my mood.  While I’ve always been a moody chick, prone to anxiety and depression, becoming a mother increased every feature of my emotional state manifold.

There are days I feel I am watching life from the bottom of the ocean, things just seem so low and heavy.  And other days it feels like there is a bird cage of wild parrots in my chest, flapping and screeching with nervous energy.  Moments of joy–  true, sweet bliss–  can be few and far between, but when they do happen they are a luminous pearl that makes the rest of the struggle dull in comparison.

Maybe it’s hormones shifting like tectonic plates from pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding, and marching towards menopause.  Or maybe it is the realization that all of a sudden I have these little scraps of myself flailing around in the world, and I’m trying to keep them gathered together so they might not unravel, and someday become an amazing quilt of a person.

Maybe you get it.  Maybe it is confusing for you too.

Jennifer from Chopping Potatoes gets it, and she is the feature of my SHOUT Out today.

One of the amazing and validating thing about blogging is that it allows readers and writers to connect with one another in supportive and empathetic ways.  Jennifer’s blog is a beacon of light and hope for moms, as she writes about the challenges of motherhood, and especially about maternal depression.

During the month of May, Jennifer posted daily about the many different aspects of maternal depression and anxiety.  I found this endeavor to be ambitious and tittsey (BTW, “tittsey” is a word I coined to be the feminine equivalent of “ballsy.”)  She herself experienced and got through postpartum depression, and writes about her journey to peel back the veil of stigma over maternal depression in all of its forms.

Like Jennifer, I had postpartum depression, and saying it was the worst, most confusing and god-awful time in my life does nothing to describe the bleak sensation of feeling inept to care for my baby and family, the fear that I’d ruined my life by becoming a mom, and the frustration and humiliation I felt for not relishing what was supposed to be the most magical time in my life.  It is still hard for me to talk about, hence many posts I’ve written allude to that time in my life after my first child was born, but never discuss it head on.

Over at Chopping Potatoes, Jennifer confronts these issues with grace and hope in a way that lets women know they are not alone, and things will get better.  She offers avenues for getting professional help, and shines a light at the end of the tunnel.  Whether or not you have experienced postpartum anxiety and depression, you will find a little something to champion your mother-soul over at her blog.  I hope you will check her out!

Thank you Jennifer for having the guts to tackle such a difficult subject.  I think you rock!  (And we will make that blog meet-up happen someday. . .  )

Saturday SHOUT-Out: My BFF

Standard

This morning, I would like to give a huge SHOUT out to my BFF, Nikel.  She does not have a blog, but  is one of the few people in my “real” life who read my blog.  She is a huge support in my life, even though we don’t really get to hang out with one another that often anymore.

I met Nikel ten years ago, when we were working together at the same agency.  She left to go on to bigger and better things, and then had her babies and spent some years at home.  Out of all my friends who have come and gone over the past decade, she is the only one who has stood the test of time and space.

She’s back at work part time, which is pretty impressive.  Her ability to juggle stuff never fails to amaze me.  She’s the person who is always super thoughtful and does things like leaves a lasagna with fresh basil on your doorstep when you are eight months pregnant and having a nervous breakdown.

I quite frankly am amazed by her, and flattered she would choose to have me in her life.

She loves me, despite the fact that after ten years I still can’t remember her birthday (a. I don’t remember anyone’s birthdays other than my kids, it is a mental defect in me, and b.  her birthday was Friday in case you were wondering, but I wished it to her on Thursday because I suck like that).

Nikel “gets me”.  We are like Meredith and Christina on Grey’s Anatomy.  She is Meredith of course because she’s skinny and looks great in jeans, and I’m Christina because, you know, the butt face and irritability.  She’s my person.

One time I got the random urge to make up a song and sing it to her when we were working together.  I marched up to her desk, my arms pumping back and forth and sang, “Nikel, she is a friend of mine!  Nikel, she is so nice and fine!  Nikel, she makes me giggle.  She has brown hair and a really nice smile!”  She laughed and we got a coffee.  How many people would just accept such silliness and not have me committed, I’ve wondered throughout the years.

Here are a few other things that make her great:

  • When I had postpartum depression after my first baby, Nikel (who’s first baby was just a few months older), got me to come to a baby yoga class that totally helped me bond with Jack and feel less isolated as a new mom.
  • Nikel can totally tell when I am texting her in my Napoleon Dynamite voice.
  • She also replies compassionately to my ragey PMS texts without thinking I’m a total freak.  Or maybe she does but she doesn’t make me feel that way.

She’s been there for me with understanding and quiet perseverance through dating woes, wedding planning, fights with my spouse, miscarriage, pregnancy, and all the little highs and lows of parenting.  Even though we haven’t known each other since we were tiny kids, I still feel like we have gone through almost as much life together.

Big love to Nikel!!  And happy belated birffday.

Who is your BFF?  What makes them so special to you?  

Saturday SHOUT Out is my way of acknowledging other bloggers and friends who touch my life and make the world a better place. If you would like to be featured in a Saturday SHOUT Out, please let me know in the comments below. It is also encouraged (and good etiquette) that you check out the others featured, and be familiar with the format and vibe of Momaste. Thanks!

Saturday SHOUT Out– Solo Mama

Standard

This morning I would like to SHOUT out to a blogger from Toronto.  Lindsay, an American living in Canada, writes Solo Mama.  Her blog, as you might guess from the title, is all about being a single mom in this wacky world of ours.

Lindsay conceived her beautiful baby, Evelyn, using donor sperm and became a single mama by choice.  Her journey began in 2011.  Gorgeous little Evelyn is now a sparkling yearling, and the light of her mother’s life.  Lindsay writes lovely, touching, and real posts about what it is like to be a single-lesbian-mom.  She has a soft touch, while at the same time managing to convey all the prickly edges of motherhood.

I’ve really enjoyed reading about Lindsay and her daughter, and also having her as a follower of Momaste.  She leaves fun, compassionate and inspiring comments on my posts.

So, if you have a few moments and want to be wowed, head over to Solo Mama and check out Lindsay’s blog.  I can promise you won’t regret it, and may even add her to your list of blogs to follow!

This week, she wrote an interesting post about how she chose sperm from a donor she knew, as opposed to using an unknown donor, and the little quirks she recognizes in her baby as coming from the biological father.

Yay for the Solo Mama!  Thanks for being an awesome mom, blogger, and new friend!  Momaste!

 

Saturday SHOUT Out is my way of acknowledging other bloggers and friends who touch my life and make the world a better place. If you would like to be featured in a Saturday SHOUT Out, please let me know in the comments below. It is also encouraged (and good etiquette) that you check out the others featured, and be familiar with the format and vibe of Momaste. Thanks!

 

 

Sunday SHOUT Out– Grief Happens

Standard

Wait, what?  A Sunday SHOUT Out?  Isn’t the SHOUT Out supposed to happen on Saturday?  Why, yes.  Yes it is.

Unfortunately, while my intention to celebrate the attitude of gratitude by dedicating a post to a fellow friend/blogger on Saturday was a good one, I didn’t quite take into consideration exactly what my Saturdays already entail…  Karate, cleaning, shopping, chasing the toddler around so she doesn’t mosh into wooden furniture.  You know, the usual.

Last night, I passed out into bed and just as I was drifting off to sleep, I realized that I never did my post.  So, I kind of decided that I would make the Saturday SHOUT Out a thing that I do when I can do it, and not drive myself even crazier, or beat myself up for being crappy about gratitude.  Because I’m not crappy.  I’m just awfully busy, stressed, and tired.

(As a side note my 365 days of gratitude page has fallen waaaaaaaaaayyyyyy behind. . .  I may chuck it all together, but haven’t decided yet.)

Anyway, there was a blogger I really wanted to recognize this week.  I wrote a post on Monday, bemoaning my foul mood of late, and had a glut of amazing comments.   Vivianne from  Grief Happens commented on my post and left me a link to a wonderful post she wrote a couple years ago called Stuff I Screw Up.  

Her post really spoke to how it feels to be a mom swimming upstream in modern parenting and feeling like a constant failure–  something to which I could really relate last week.

There is something so powerful just knowing that other moms out there go through the same stuff, and feel similar conflicts.  Alone, we can feel so fragile and isolated on the island of motherhood, but together there is strength and connection.

So, here’s to Vivianne and her lovely blog and her wonderful post!  Check her out if you get a moment–  her blog is awesomely honest and real.  And thanks to all the other mamas out there who make the world a better and brighter place by supporting and empathizing with other moms in their moment of need.

Saturday SHOUT Out– Perfection Pending

Standard

Happy Saturday everyone!  Today I am giving a SHOUT out to my fellow blogger, Meredith, at Perfection Pending.  Meredith and I have been “following” each other for about a year, although she has been blogging for five years longer than me–  talk about stamina and ambition!  She is never at a loss for subject material, and draws from her life as a mom, her religion and spirituality, and even posts about crafts and home projects (color me impressed on that item since I am about as non-crafty as they come!).

Meredith is a special blogger to me.  She writes deeply from the heart and is incredibly honest, sometimes raw, and often humorous.  I love the way she is able to capture our vulnerability and strength as women, moms, and wives.  Her beauty comes from earthy wisdom.

I would also like to thank Meredith and Perfection Pending for giving me a chance to practice gratitude on a day when I really don’t feel like it because I am exhausted with work, family stress, and a terrific head cold.  It is a blessing to be reminded that the world is so much more than myself, and sometimes the practice of gratitude results in the real thing.

I love this post about What Bravery Looks Like When You’re A Mom .  I found it touching, inspiring, and so relevant to my own situation in life.  Thanks so much Meredith for being you and for writing your heart out!

Saturday SHOUT Out is my way of acknowledging other bloggers and friends who touch my life and make the world a better place.  If you would like to be featured in a Saturday SHOUT Out, please let me know in the comments below.  It is also encouraged (and good etiquette) that you check out the others featured, and be familiar with the format and vibe of Momaste.  Thanks!  

Saturday SHOUT Out– My Friend In France

Standard

Today’s SHOUT out is dedicated to Elea.

Elea introduced herself to me through a comment she left on a post I had published at Offbeat Families regarding my post-pregnancy body.  She told me she was a mom in France, and that she was also a survivor of thyroid cancer.  She shared her pride in being able to breastfeed her baby against all odds after beating thyroid cancer, and perked up my interest when she mentioned some of the cultural ideas about breastfeeding in France.

Since joining the Momaste community, Elea has been a true friend and supporter.  She leaves sweet, uplifting, and sometimes silly comments on almost every post I write.  I am so touched she takes the time and patience to read all of my long posts.  Elea also sends me encouraging emails from across the Atlantic Ocean.

The icing on the cake are the photos she sends me from places I have never been and might never get to in this lifetime.  Today, she has granted me permission to share with you a photo she sent me of the Eiffel Tower that she took from a giant ferris wheel.  Paris!

20140201-144328.jpg

A few months ago, Elea wrote a guest post for me on her journey as a mom and breastfeeding in France, which I found absolutely fascinating.  Check it out if you get a chance!

I never had a pen pal, and I always wanted one.  Thanks to Elea, now I have a wonderful pen pal halfway across the world!  Thanks so much for being a part of my life and for all of your support, Elea.  You are wonderful!

 

Saturday SHOUT Out is my way of acknowledging other bloggers and friends who touch my life and make the world a better place.  If you would like to be featured in a Saturday SHOUT Out, please let me know in the comments below.  It is also encouraged (and good etiquette) that you check out the others featured, and be familiar with the format and vibe of Momaste.  Thanks!  

20140201-144328.jpg

MY Inaugural Saturday SHOUT Out– January 25th 2014, Boof And Monk Monk

Standard

Today I would like to give a very, super, happy, fun, yippie skippie, and warm shout out to my pal Monk Monk over at her blog, Boof and Monk Monk.  If you do one thing today, check.  her.  out.

Even though we’ve never met IRL, I’m pretty sure Monk Monk and I were twins separated at birth.  We have this weird blogging kismet where we come up with similar thoughts or topics at the same time, have similar senses of humor, and share similar interests.  Oh and we are both six-foot-tall social workers and mothers of toddlers.  If we hung out together we would constantly be saying, “Jinx, you owe me a coke!” (or a cosmo),  because we would both just be saying the same stuff at the same time.  The only difference between us is that she lived in India and I’m terrified of snakes.  True story.

Monk Monk and I found each other through the former Offbeat Families site, where we had both guest posted.  She commented on a piece I had written on sucking as a working mom and I was drawn to her Wonder Woman avatar like a moth to a flame.  Turns out we both blog here at WP, so it was easy to follow one another’s blogs, and we quickly became friends.  She never hesitates to leave a thoughtful comment or some supportive advice.

Monk Monk is a devoted wife and mom, and currently works as a teacher.  Her adorable little man, Sir Potamus, is often featured in her blogs, teaching her all kinds of life lessons.  She has a passion for heated yoga, her family, and taking photos in thrift stores.  She writes posts that are at once humorous, sensitive, and transcendent.  A recurring theme in her work is adoption, and being an adoptee who has connected with her birth family.

One of my favorite posts from Monk Monk is Coyote Mother.  Trickster Mother.  I love the poetry of this piece.  It has warmth, humor, truth, and strength that really resonated with me long after I read it.  I hope you enjoy it too.

Blog on Monk Monk, you gorgeous yogini!  Momaste loves you!

As many of you read in my teaser post yesterday, I am doing a new segment called Saturday SHOUT Out.  It is a chance for me to give a virtual, but loving pat on the back to a fellow blog-bud out there who has touched my life in a special way, as I have met some truly amazing people through the bloggie boogie.  It was exciting yesterday to see how well-recieved this idea was!  

If you would like to be featured on an upcoming SHOUT Out, please let me know either by emailing me, or in the comments below.  If would also be good karma if you check out the other featured blogs, and add them to your roster of blogs in your reader if you enjoy them, so that we are all sharing the love!   Hugs and MOMASTE!!