Formerly Babyfruit: The Miscarriage Diaries about miscarriage blogging, miscarriage advice, celebrity miscarriage and other miscarrying obsessions. Throw in pregnancy, and severe post partum depression. Now juggling life as a 40-something mom of a 6-year-old.
Every so often I'm struck by how pretty NG is. Then I wonder if I'm biased. Then I think I'm just perpetuating the idea of "pretty" as better than something more substantial and lasting - like intelligence.
I wonder what she will be like as a young woman. Will she be kind to others or will she be a mean girl?
Will she become vain and focus only on her looks or will she downplay her appearance and want to be known for her keen mind?
Having a pretty daughter brings up interesting thoughts and emotions, particularly as an older mom. I'm watching my own bloom wane as her youthful glow only increases. I've seen mothers get jealous of their beautiful daughters and try to recapture their youth only ending up looking like haggard tarts.
I have no interest in competing with my daughter. I'm embracing my gray hairs, noting the new lines in my face, watching parts of my body start to droop a bit. But instead of feeling envy of my daughter's promise and opportunity to be youthful for many years to come, I feel wonder at how each year she reveals a new facet of herself or learns new things about the world and fills her brilliant and open mind with ideas and possibility.
More than anything, I love watching her mind grow and her personality shine through.
There are perils having a beautiful daughter, and they start at a very early age. Over the last few years, we've been followed down the aisles of stores by not just creepy men but by women, too, asking questions about her, telling us over and over again how pretty she is, or worse, not saying anything at all...just following us. One even followed us from the store, out into the parking lot and stood and watched as we got into our car.
I hate being a paranoid parent, but I can see why some parents pull their children a little closer or scream hysterically at them when they wander off. Even watching her round the corner of a store aisle before me sends my heart racing, and I hurry after her and say to her a little too forcefully "Stay in my sights! Make sure you can see me, and I can see you!"
She's at the age now when I have to tell her about the bad people in the world who will try to draw her close so they can snatch her. Because when I asked her a few months back, "So honey, what would you do if a man came up to you and asked you to help find his lost kitten?" She said, "I'd help him find it, mommy!" She smiled widely, proud of herself for being such a "good girl."
I had to explain to her that if any grown up approached her who she didn't know - man or woman - she had to run away and find a grown up who she did know and tell them. No. Matter. What.
"What if it is a policeman?" she asked. "Because policemen are my friends."
"If it is a policeman, that is okay," I say, then hope that will always be true.
Never do I want to make her paranoid, just aware. Just a little bit cautious. And I don't want her to diminish her beauty or think of it as a curse. I just want her to realize that those attracted to her because of her loveliness may not always have good intentions.
How do we protect our children...but not too much?
Can't sleep. I always get excited about travel but these days its a mash-up of mixed emotions. Still love travel - it lifts my spirit and opens up possibility - but hate leaving my family. Love getting to places with sunshine, but hate missing my husband and daughter. (You are my sunshine, my only sunshine...)
I survived a two-week trip to San Diego. We survived it just fine.
Because of the inconsistent babysitting situations in the community where I live, I've booked a flight to bring my mom in for the entire time to help with NG. So my family is set.
But I'm not set. I feel like I'm coming undone each time I think of the flights that will take me further and further away from home.
I'm grateful for all of the opportunities that are bringing me to farflung places like Germany and Russia. A part of me is excited about the travel, of course. But the overwhelming emotion feels like panic.
Not sure why it is panic. I'm not really afraid of anything. I'm just feeling tremendous, non-specific anxiety.
How do you deal with business trips away from family?
5yo: "I like that song where she says 'Wake up in the morning feeling like P Diddy...' but Dad says 'Jack' is not 'propriate. I don't know why but "brush my teeth with a bottle of Jack is not 'propriate."
Me thinking to myself: "O.M.G. I'm going to Mommy Hell."