I think I’ve had about 72 “I am a mom” moments since my two littles were born. I had them for sure when I was peed or puked on for the first time, and during the all-nighter with a sick baby when I was desperate to take the illness away. It didn’t matter that I was exhausted when my feverish infant needed me in the night.
You know the feeling, right? If only my kisses and love could have cured what pained that baby. If only Mama could have fixed it.
Sometimes we get lucky during those moments, and it occurs to us that we can indeed do something big to help. For our family that meant a lifestyle overhaul, not just for our baby girl, but for all four of us.
About 15 months ago our lives changed. My baby girl’s skin was almost always covered in eczema and/ or hives. She was such a happy baby, and it broke my heart to see her scratching at her skin, trying to alleviate the pain, and itching only to make it worse. Her doctor at the time didn’t think that she needed to see a specialist.
I thought differently. So we went, without a referral, to an allergy specialist (And a new family doctor because, I mean…) and that was the day our lives changed, and got much better for our Plum. At 12 months old, the tests showed that she had multiple food allergies, including a life-threatening peanut allergy. We were sent home with an Epi-Pen, scared to death that we would somehow not know what to do should we ever need to use it.
I remember driving home that day, shaken. This would mean a lot of work on our part to keep her food safe. At a stop light, I looked at my baby in the rearview mirror. Through my tears, I made her a promise that I would do everything in my power to make our lives fit with her needs. I promised her that our home would be safe for her to live in freely, and that I would care for her in every way that I could. It was the most profound “I am mom” moment I have ever had. My baby needed me to move a few mountains for her, and that was the day we pulled out our shovels.
Extra small spacer and inhaler for Plum
Sweetest patient ever
At the doctor, Tinkerbell goes first.
Fast forward 15 months. Today, Plum was diagnosed today with asthma. My girl officially has the third piece of the childhood immunology pie: allergies, eczema and asthma. That’s a pie no one wants to see completed for their child, but here we are. It’s not something I can change for her, but (and that’s a big ‘but’) I can do a whole heck of a lot to help her. As her mom, I do have the power to make her life more comfortable. As a family, we decided to change our habits for her.
And this is what we do.
Her eczema, asthma and allergies are controlled not only by medication but also by using perfume and dye-free natural bath products, not just for her, but for all of us. We use free and clear laundry detergent and fabric softener. We use all natural and chemical free lotions, not just for her, but for all of us. When I clean the house (and let’s be honest, that’s not all the time, but when I do) we use natural and chemical-free cleansers, not just for her, but for all of us.
When we eat a meal it is safe for her, and for all of us. The diapers we use, the places we eat out, the clothing we buy, and the products we use are all carefully chosen. Basically, anything that comes into our home has to pass the test questions: Is this an allergen for her? Will this irritate her skin? Will this flare her asthma?
I cannot keep my daughter safe from all of the world, but I can keep her safe in our home. It can and should be her safe haven, for her and for all four of us.
So now tell me, have you ever had an "I'm a Mom" moment?
This morning's outfit choice.
Ms. Plum has had a very rough week. Asthma has been kicking her little butt. We go tomorrow to the specialist and hopefully come home with a new game plan for her so that she can breathe better and be sick less. I'd be more than grateful if you'd think of her tomorrow morning and send up some love into the universe. Say a prayer or just think about her. We are at the beginning of getting a handle on this asthma shiz. We'll figure it out, I know. And it will become the newest normal. In time.
So I thought today I'd celebrate one of my favorite things about her. She wakes up happy and ready for the day even when she's had a bad night. She almost always gets fancy within minutes of waking. I don't know how she does it. She reminds me that she can handle this and by proxy, so can I.
She's just fancy. She can't help it. And I thought it was high time I documented her amazing fashion sense here on the blog. There are no words to describe it. You just have to see it. She can work just about anything. Even if it's Dora slippers and Hulk underwear. She even gets fancy to nurse these days. See for yourself. These are a few of my favorites.
First, when there's nothing but a slow glowing dream....
This girl...she's just so damn fancy. Tomorrow's a big day for her.
I have a feeling she's going to be the fanciest patient there.
Fell off the couch
She falls down. Her pain is lessened as I draw her close. Her breaths go from cries to regulated. Like magic.
She comes to me when she is scared. When she is sad. And we take a minute to connect. She feels less afraid, less lonely.
She comes to me when she is tired. I help her to unwind and relax into sleep.
I go to her when she wakes afraid in the night or because her teeth hurt or she is cold. I help her to keep warm. I help the bad dream become the past. I help her to rest again.
She pats my belly. Sighs. Curls into me. Her toes tickling my knees until they are still again.
She smiles at me in the morning and says, "Hi mommy" with a lilt that lights up my heart. I tell her "Good morning,baby" We snuggle into the day. She takes a moment to get ready. A little mama milk before the hustle and bustle begins.
Sometimes she is wiggly-giggly. Sometimes relaxed. Other times distracted. Or oh so serious.
Sometimes she touches my face. Other times she counts my arm freckles. She says "Gank you, mommy" and goes on her way. My big girl who is still my nursling.
I cherish these days. I know they will not last. The day will come when she requests other things. Replacing these times with a hug, a shrug or a band-aid. There will come a day when a kiss will do. A book. A special treat.
But we are not there yet.
And so I will nurse her until she is ready for those other things. No worries. No timeline. No regret.
For now, I am physically her anchor. And someday when she decides it's time, she will cast off and sail away.
Thankfully, for my heart's sake, that day was not today.
I sit and stare at her in amazement at least once a day. Usually it's more. This girl is fancy. This girl is funny. She is silly and smart. And beautiful. I know I'm not supposed to emphasize beauty but I can't help it. She is a beautiful girl and I can't believe that she is mine. Well, sometimes I can. Like when she puts on her clown wig and rainbow pants. I totally believe it then. Because, duh.
I have been putting off writing this post. It's mostly because I have no idea what to say. My feelings are all over the place. She's two now. She's two. Two whole years old. And I am all at once in love with little ball of awesome energy she has become and wistful about the little tiny baby who lay skin to skin on my chest this very night two years ago.
She has changed and grown. She has learned to talk. She sings and dances. She dresses up and has mad fashion sense. She loves Dora the Explorer (Dora Bora!) and putting on a pwee-tee dwess (pretty dress). Her favorite foods are avocado and turkey wraps. Her favorite drink is still mama's milk. Her second favorite drink is apple juice. She has learned how to bring the best and the worst out of her brother and she is an expert in knowing when to play her cards with him. She knows her alphabet and the sounds the letters make. She is smart smart smart.
She is always excited to see you. She is always chatting with someone or something. She cares deeply for her babies and tells them how loved they are. She will rock and nurse her baby dolls to sleep and then let us all know that we need to "Shhhhh, a baby sweepy". She runs to most of the places she goes. Her amazing chub-a-lub jiggling, even though I notice when a roll disappears and is replaced by a longer body. And yes, that makes me sad. She was my squishiest baby. Maybe the squishiest baby of all time. I'm not ready to see those rolls go just yet. But she's running and jumping and climbing. Determined to grow them out. She has a twinkle in her eye and lilt in her sweet voice. She is gentle and kind and funny and loves her family.
But tonight as I sit here typing, all I can focus on is that she is my little itty-bitty baby. I can still feel her curled up like a kidney bean on my chest. Wrapped in a Moby wrap. Breathing her soft breath in my ear as we slept. Sometimes sleeping with her head stuck in my armpit. I remember the little barracuda baby who knew exactly what to do to get the milk from me. I am remembering the smell and lighting of the bedroom where we spent a lot of time during our first weeks together. How the bedside table lamp tossed a soft light on her face and how I would just stare at her. How when I sang to her, she would smile and coo along. I'm remembering the little baby who eventually won her brothers heart. She knew he'd come around. Because you can't help but love her. You just can't.
She made our family whole. That is how I am thinking of her tonight. Our last baby. Our Plum.
But she's is not a little baby anymore.
I knew she was the last and I made sure that I was soaking up the scents and soft snuggles of her babyhood. But I still want to go back for a few minutes and nuzzle my nose onto her soft fuzzy newborn head and take in her sweet baby scent. Just for a minute. I swear I'd come right back and be ready to move forward on this new chapter. But it seems there is no return but for dreaming. And time will march forward like it always does. What with the flying by...
So I will hold my heart in my hands and say out loud that I am so very sad at times when I think of how fast she has grown. My heart is squeezed and my breath is shallow as I fight tears, wishing I could hold my new babies just one more time. But then I am pulled back into this place. This time. And I hear her call out to me, frightened. Maybe from a dream or just not wanting to be alone. "Mama? Mama?!" and I jump up from my keyboard and slide into bed next to my sweet Plum and say "Mama's right here baby girl. Mama's right here. It's ok." She is immediately calmed. She makes the most beautiful sounds as she nurses back to sleep. And I am reminded that while she is not a baby anymore, she is still my baby. She will always be my baby.
Happy Birthday to you, my precious and loved baby girl. You light up my life every single day with your joy. You are a gift to this world. It is an honor to have been the first to love you. Love you always, Mama
Newborn Baby Plum
Last night I dreamed that I was in an all adult version of the stage play Annie. In my triumphant return to the theater I played an adult version of the littlest orphan Molly. The one who Annie mothers and sings to. That was me. When I woke at midnight to find that I was in bed and that I still felt like left-over poop pie, I fell back asleep and dreamed I was making sausages and other delicious meats with a few pals from high school. Then we all went to Burger King for some of their new cheddar jalapeno potato bites. They were excellent. While at BK, I argued with the staff over the size of my giant coke. Apparently it wasn't big enough? Anyway, when I woke at 1:30 am I was starving. Finally, 7 hours later I felt better.
I'll back up.
Yesterday morning was wonderful. I cleaned up the house and had a Cinderella moment with a pregnant robin outside our window. I could feel spring a coming. I am so very excited for this. Because this winter has kind of been terrible. Someone is always sick or crying it seems. While I always try very hard to NOT wish the days away, this winter made that goal a bit tough. Because it suuuuucked.
So our morning was fun. The house got cleaned. We played a bit outside, where I had a hilarious conversation with Mr. Pants about his parrot that had become frozen in a block of ice. "Whoa mama. Look at this! Da macaw is frozen in a Popsicle! He dead, mama?" He wasn't upset, just asking. I told him he wasn't dead, just in carbonite
. And he said " oh ok" and ran off. With that, Mr Pants received his first lesson in Star Wars lore.
It was a good day. Until it wasn't anymore.
Things began descending into hell around 11 am. Mr. Pants decided to once again b
e a turd-face for his Head Start worker (Sorry Miss. J!). And for an hour I ran interference as he tried to steal everything from her bag and hide it in the house somewhere. He participated in almost nothing she tried to do with him but you know who did? Plum. She was all
in. Miss J's grasshopper. She waited patiently and happily completed all of her "work" while Pants ran through the house screaming or trying to run everyone over with dump trucks.
We were managing though until Plum got stuck behind the recliner when she tried to retrieve the marker that Pants had swiped from her and thrown back there. I lifted her out and felt my back shift and pop. When you have blown discs in your back, that is no good, man. It will send the icy wave of fear through you. It will stop you in your tracks and make you sweat.
Miss J left and I got Plum down for her nap while Pants began taking pictures and cork boards down off the wall and eating paper. He TP-ed the living room and drew on himself with a successfully stolen Head Start marker. I found him in a pile of clothes he had removed from his dresser. You know that scene in Clue when yet another person (this time it's Yvette
) is killed and the cast finds them? Instead of freaking out, they all just sigh and walk away? Yeah, that was me. I walked away defeated. My back hurt. I made myself some lunch a midst strewn toilet paper and half eaten art projects. I was hungry, man. And did I mention that my back hurt? So I ate. My feelings and my pain. I ate them.
Moments later I felt that dread that comes when you know you are about to toss your cookies. Yep. All that lunch? It didn't stay down. I had somehow managed to hurt my back and get ridiculously sick all in the same afternoon. There is nothing that can be done at this point but laugh and text your husband, dudes. And shed a few tears of self-pity. And explain to your kid that mommy is going to be OK (Your kid who has been a little punk all day long is suddenly concerned about you). I am reminded while barfing my face off that this lil dude is a good person despite his three year-old impulses.
"You spit out your food, mama?"
"Yeah, bud. Mama doesn't feel good. I'm OK, though. Go watch some tv and I'll be out in a minute"
"You no feel good, mama?"
"Right, bud. Mama's tummy hurts. It's OK, go watch some TV"
"You need a hug, mama?"
"Not just yet, dude"
"I call Fireman Sam. He know what to do!"
"Sounds good, bud."
"Mama? Is Daddy coming home?"
"I hope so duder."
He waits til I'm done. He has decided against a hug in favor of a few apprehensive love pats to my leg. "OK, mama?" "Yeah bud."
Daddy arrived home a few hours later and I went to bed at six. I woke at 8 to the smell of bacon. It turned my stomach. "Why for the love of baby puppies are you making bacon?", I moan. "I'm not. Come here. A little girl we all know had discovered the irresistible bowl of bacon grease and wore it as a hat"
I mean, that's what you are supposed to do with a bowl a bacon grease, no? Thankfully, I married a dude that can roll with the punches. And you know what I found when I rounded the corner to the kitchen? This...a good old-fashioned sink bath for bacon grease head.
I dragged my sad butt back to bed smiling a little. Bacon grease head. These kids.
Needless to say, I was no fan of yesterday. But I will say that Plum's curls are looking extremely luminous this morning. So today is looking up already. My final dream of the night was of playing baseball with my brothers in the backyard we grew up in. Under the willow tree we played in (and swung from it's branches) that has since been half taken down. Our dog Misty was running the bases with us. She was a good dog. I haven't seen her in 20 years. I woke with a smile on my face and feeling pretty good.
So good riddance, Yesterday. Hello today. You are bound to be a better day...right?
Dear Future Dinner Host/Play Date Host/Birthday Party Host/Mom friend,
Cc: Family, Friends,Waitress at Olive Garden, Bounce house worker and everyone else in all the world.
We need to talk. I really want to get together. I love getting out of the house. I love being out in the world. I love it so much but there is something you should know. I'm kind of annoying. Let me explain.
When you have a toddler with food allergies you think about food a lot. Like, a lot. Especially when those allergies are some of the most common ingredients in food. Plum is allergic to eggs, milk, peanuts and shellfish. And while steering clear of shrimp has proven pretty easy (Shit. You're not serving shrimp, right?!), the other three are everywhere. Everywhere, dude. I always carry an EpiPen and I'm always watching, scanning and informing. I'm sure it can be annoying for some. So if during our fun time together, I need to hit the bathroom and I turn to you for the 8th time that night and say something like, "Please just don't let her eat anything at all until I get back, ok?" You might want to say..."DUDE! I freeging know!" but I hope you'll just say, "Totally, I got this." because it's not you, it's me. And her. It's also her.
So yeah, I'm always thinking about food. And not just what I buy at the grocery store but also the food in restaurants and yep, the food at your house. And the food at the park. And random food stuff in just about every place you can think of because I have a toddler and she is every bit capable of stealing a child's snack on the playground. In fact, she's probably gonna do it (She's a second child. She can't help it). So I'm on watch. I can't trust her to do this all by herself yet. So it's gotta be me.
And that means I'm going to ask a few seemingly rude questions. Please don't hate me when you say that you checked for milk ingredients and then I'm all like, "can I see the box real quick?" (Did you know that milk has like seventy-two names?). It's not because I don't trust you. OK, It is because I don't trust you. But not in a bad way! Only in a mama bear way. I'm digging myself in a bit deep here, I get that. Moving on...
Did you know that when I walk into your house, I scan your counters? Also, I might be over here reading the labels of the bags of snacks in the trash can so there's that. If I start moving things further back on the table and rearranging snack placements, please don't think I'm a jerk-face. I'm just trying to set my playing field better to keep my kid safe.
I also probably have a bag of food that I brought so that she can eat. Please don't be offended. It's not your cooking. I love your cooking.
And finally, birthday parties are becoming especially hard. I mean, cake. The heavenly mouth loving celebration that is a plate full of cake. 99.9% of the time, Plum can't have your cake, man. Until recently it didn't really matter much but see, she gets it now. She wants what the other kids are having. And it's just cruel to bring her to a party to watch other kids enjoy cake. And so we will also bring dessert just for her (I'm not the best at baking without eggs and milk but I'm getting there).
Ok, that's about it. In closing, I just wanted to thank you for the invitation to share food with you. I hope that after all this jazz, you still will want us to actually come over.
~ Mama Pants
PS: This post was inspired by a very special six year-old's birthday party this past weekend. Her mom, Jessica, stopped off at a vegan bakery and purchased a special cupcake just for Plum to enjoy. I mean, that is some hostess with the most-ess type shiz right there.. Thank you, Auntie Jessica! Can I get a WHAT! WHAT! from all the allergy moms for Jessica? I mean...
Clockwise: Mmmm, vegan cupcake; Pants channels Madonna; then slurps some frosting like a boss;Plum thinks she has the best dessert (she does); HATS! OMG HATS!
To be clear though, I'm not complaining. In the grand scheme of things, allergies and eczema can be for the most part controlled. This comes in handy for a control freak. Not that I am one. What?
Once again linking with the amazing Greta and Sarah for #iPPP.
Click that button and link up!
I have an unhealthy fear of spiders. It's too much. I get that. I have a pretty good idea where it came from too....
My dad is a gentle and loving person. It's even possible that he is an accidental Buddhist. Because he cannot kill any of God's sacred creatures. Ask me how I know. How do I know? Oh, thanks for asking! I remember it like it was yesterday but it was 32-ish years ago. It might have been a dark and stormy night, but probably not. Whatever.
I screamed and screamed. "DAAAD- DAY!! HALP!!!" and I saw his shadowy man frame enter my room. He was going to save me. He was going to kill the fuck out of this spider! My hero!
Whoa, wait...what are you doing, daddy?
"I'll just let him go back to his home. He's lost"
And with that, my dad picked up the spider like it was no big thing (Like.It.Was.No.Big.Thing.) and gently placed him out of my bedroom window like it was a newborn baby. You know, under the screen that had been loose for years? The one that pops off when you look at it sideways? That one. That night I lay in bed waiting for that spider to exact its revenge on me whilst I slept. And I'm pretty sure this is when my fear was stapled into my brain. Stapled.
Thankfully my dad doesn't read this blog because I would hate for him to feel bad. He can't help his gentle ways. Honestly his gentle ways are what made him a great dad (with this one exception, of course). I mean, you know how they say that you marry your dad? It's crazy true. But I digress...
So I am horror movie a-scared of spiders. It hurts to even write the word but I need to explain why my boob is throbbing and bleeding right now. Oh yeah, dudes, I said bleeding. And it's because I am a terrible mother. Do you remember when I left my children to the mercy of that baby skunk? Not my finest moment.
Also not my finest moment? Seeing a spider in the bed while nursing Plum to sleep tonight. Plum, who is cutting molars and really into nursing right now. Plum who was trying to sleep like an angel. Plum who missed her nap and was so tired and needed the comfort of her mama to soothe her into a delicious teething pain-free sleep. Plum who tried desperately to hang on while her mother lost her sham-a-lama-ding-dong mind. Poor Plum.
She didn't deserve the screaming mom that jumped and ran from the room. She tried to hang on. She tried really freeg-balls hard. So hard that, well, I already told you in the post title. So that is why I am icing my nipple down as I type.
Boo to me, dudes.
Boo. To. Me. And my bullshit fear of spiders. Fa-gargle.
Do you have an irrational fear? Tell me about it and make me feel better!
“Often when you think you're at the end of something, you're at the beginning of something else.” ~ Fred Rogers
That's what I read this morning when I was tooling around on the interwebs. My intention was to redesign our blog button and spruce up this joint. But then I stumbled onto that quote up there and started to get the hot eyes that you get when you are trying not to cry. Again. You know, because, um, I cry all the time. It's a problem.
If I'm not crying in my car
on my way to grab Chinese take-out, I'm crying happy tears at the end of a movie. Or I'm laughing myself into
tears because I can. not. stop
. watching the Bad Lip Reading
videos on YouTube (you are so welcome for that link). And then this morning Mr. Rogers makes me cry the Always-Threatening-to-Spill Bittersweet-Baby-Stuff tears.
So instead of designing a blog button or tweaking the site or cleaning my house or making myself breakfast, I made this and posted it to our Facebook
page while crying and blowing my nose...
Plum and Pants see the future
He is rounding the bases toward four. He understands how the world works more and more every minute. He is curious. He asks questions even when he knows the answer. I think he just wants to chat and show off his skills. He is sensitive. So so sensitive. He is loving. And he is loud. He wants to show her the way. He wants to show her how. He is getting so tall. He is getting too tall. He is goofy and he knows it. When he wants to figure things out there is no stopping him until he's got it. He is our Lil dude. And he is getting bigger by the hour.
She is turning two in March. It's only six weeks away. She is nowhere near the tiny baby I brought home from the hospital 680 days ago. She is talking to me in sentences. She is tapping into her individuality. She knows her alphabet, numbers and shapes. She has always had opinions, but now she acts on them. She tells you about them. She is thrilled to be understood. She expresses herself all over the place. And her stink-eye is brutal. Brutal. She's a dancer and a singer. She's a dare-devil like her brother. There is no mistaking her love. It is unconditional and covers you. She is our Plum. And she is only one for 1,128 more hours...
Time is always going to be flying. That's nothing new. I'm finding that being awake and inside of these days is the best way to fly along with it. Because it's just never going to slow down. And that is life.
Linking up with Greta and Julie for #iPPP
I didn't have a chance to write a post about our year. We were in the thick of germ warfare in this house as the ball dropped in Times Square. But I can't not recap. This blog is nothing if not a chronicle of our life together. Had I not been washing puke towels and bleaching my house, my year end post would have gone something like this...
My Dearest Husband, Pants and Plum,
2012. Oh, it was a year. It was all at once brutal, beautiful, hard and amazing. It taught us that we can weather anything. But we already knew that, didn't we? As I went through the pictures of what 2012 brought us, I sat and stared and cried. In awe of us. Remembering. Photographs can do that. They take us right back to a feeling. A thought. A memory.
We've made so many memories.
Relaxing on Thanksgiving morning. Bellies so very full. Or the day that the two of you brought your mama comfort because I was so so sad. Sad that my friend had died.
There was the day that we played in the mud and the day that Plum turned One. The day that broke our hearts when Pants had his tonsils out and the day that we rode on a real train for the first time.
So many days. So many moments. But if I had to choose just one, it would be that this was the year you two became inseparable. This was the year you found each other.
I remember every single moment in each of these pictures. The second it occurred to me, Mr. Pants, that you would be ok because you spoke a sentence to me for the first time in your life.
Plum, you started walking and talking this year, baby girl. And you were such a champ when we went camping. I can't believe that you know all of your alphabet and shapes and numbers. You are so crazy (and almost scary) smart.
Pants, you started pre-school and you are r.u.l.i.n.g. it. And Mama cried when I gave you your first short haircut. You loved it but I hope you will choose to grow it out again. You always tell me, "I got you, Mama" as you hug me tight. It melts me.
Daddy, remember when we sat in the driveway and watched our babies play? Do you remember that moment we realized that we were becoming parents to bigger kids?
We've played in the hay, sandboxes and on swing-sets. We snuggled so close every single night. We played dress-up, got fat lips, shared all of our viruses and jumped on beds. We turned 36, 37, 3 and 1.
Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. Life moved forward. Life happened. Life was so beautiful.
And it still is, my loves. I cannot wait to spend 2013 (and all the years to come) loving you. You have made my life full. You bring me a joy that I had no idea existed. You are my heart. All three of you.
You mean everything.
Here's what The Family Pants was up to last year...
It's been on my mind a lot this week. 2013 is brand new and it brings with it those promises we all love to make to ourselves. I've started to think about my body. Just like I do every single year at this time. I think about how I want to treat it better and be healthier. How I want to be nicer to myself when I'm inside of my head chatting away. These are good things, of course. But then something inevitably happens. I start to lament the things I haven't already done and the ways I wish I could be different than who I am physically.
It started this morning in record time. As I squeezed in a new pair of PJ pants after Plum wiped some boogers on the ones I was wearing. It didn't go well. They were more than snug. More than just a little tight. And I started down the road of self-destruction. Why can't you get your shit together? You are gross. You are fat. LOOK at you.
But then, before I could even peel the pants back off, I was out of that shame spiral. I was on to more important things. I throat punched that mean girl in my head. I told her to back the fuck off. And I nursed my child who had just fallen down and needed comfort. I nursed her with the very body I had just been shaming. And as I looked at my perfect child and held her as she quieted, her hand gently patting the stretched and marked belly I grew her in, I began hoping for her. Wishing and dreaming for her that she will love her own body.
My Darling Girl,
Your body is a gift. Your body does and will continue to do amazing things. And I want you to believe that. I am desperate for you to know that.
My body made you. That's kind of the most amazing thing, isn't it?
I pray that I can foster in you a love for the body that I grew in mine. Because there will be times when you aren't so sure. Times when it's hard to love yourself and yep, the Target fitting room might be one of those places. I want to build you up and teach you how to love your body so that you can handle those moments with grace, and maybe a little humor. And walk tall right on out of there. Chin to the sky. Letting it roll off. Knowing that it's not you. That it's a piece of clothing that didn't work. And that it has no power over you and will never inform you of your beauty.
I promise you that I will work hard every single day to speak kindly to myself. Not just in front of you, but also when you are not there. Because I intend to believe in me, too. Baby girl, my whole life I have struggled to love my body. To accept it and care for it without shame. But there is something in me today, in this moment, that says to stop. Stop being cruel to myself. Stop wasting time by wishing and not doing. Stop beating myself down. Just stop so that I can start somewhere else. Anywhere. Just start.
You are watching me. You are learning from me.
I promise to try and rid my language of words that could wound you without my intention and to help you to process those words coming from others. I hope to teach you that you are beautiful. Inside and out. Because you are, my sweet girl. You just are.
It's that simple and that complicated, all at once.
You are perfect just the way you are.
And so today I say to myself, You are beautiful. You are divine. LOOK at you. You are amazing.
What kind words will you say to yourself today?