The TRUTH About Motherhood http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com and everything else! Tue, 31 Mar 2015 04:18:31 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1.1 Parenting Survival Tips from the Walking Dead http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/walking-dead-parenting/ http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/walking-dead-parenting/#comments Mon, 30 Mar 2015 19:32:40 +0000 http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/?p=22952 I love The Walking Dead, as many of you know. Last year when I was in Boston and shared a brief moment on the elevator with “Shane” from the Walking dead, I nearly fainted and I don’t do fan girl moments. Well, unless you count that time I made a complete fool of myself in […]

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I love The Walking Dead, as many of you know. Last year when I was in Boston and shared a brief moment on the elevator with “Shane” from the Walking dead, I nearly fainted and I don’t do fan girl moments. Well, unless you count that time I made a complete fool of myself in front of the Pioneer Woman at BlogHer.

Anyways, last night, I was watching the Walking Dead Season finale and spoiler alert, Carol is badass! In fact, as I started thinking about it there are a lot of parenting lessons to be learned from Rick, Carol, Michon, Daryl and the crew.

First and foremost, kids are a liability in the zombie apocalypse. If they’re not killing you during birth, they are crying to attract zombies but then again, they also get your back. I mean how many times has Carl stabbed a walker in the head to save his dad? Now, that folks, is love in the time of the Walking Dead. My kids have never stabbed a zombie in the head to save my life, but when my back was out last month, they made me a PB& J and really, isn’t it the same thing?

But seriously, I have learned the most from Carol. I’m talking lessons that can actually make me be a better, more effective mom. Here are my Carol-isms or

Top parenting lessons that I’ve learned from the Walking Dead.

Make sure that children respect your personal space

Carol literally threatened to hurt a child if he didn’t stop trying to hang around her. I think she may have gone overboard but he knew that she was serious as a heart attack when he looked up and saw those dead eyes looking back at him. She made her boundaries crystal clear and that is something that I could use some help with.

Don’t make idle threats and always follow through

If you want children to learn to finish what they start and to respect your time and you as a person, you have to hold up your end of the bargain. Never make idle threats because you will undermine your own authority and never( ever,ever,ever) break a promise because then you lose the child’s trust.

Actions speak louder than words

Don’t talk it to death, just do it! When Carol thought 2 members of the new group were sick and could hurt her family, she thought they were a threat. She didn’t discuss it or take a vote. It wasn’t a democracy. She did what she thought was best and simply took them from their beds, killed them and then burned their bodies. I’m not saying to hurt your children but parenthood is not a democracy and sometimes the right choice is not the popular one.

walking dead, the walking dead, Carol, parenting, parenting tips

Let it Go

When Carol’s daughter turned, as much as she hated it, she had to let her go. Her daughter turned into a walker and she knew she had to let Rick shoot her in the head. She couldn’t change her back. She had to make the merciful, loving decision. She put her child first.

“That’s not my little girl. It’s some other…thing. My Sophia was alone in the woods. All this time, I thought. She didn’t cry herself to sleep. She didn’t go hungry. She didn’t try to find her way back. Sophia died a long time ago.”

Whispering is Way Scarier than Yelling

When the little boy, Sam, in Alexandria makes a pest of himself asking Carol to make him cookies. She never yells, though she is clearly annoyed, she simply whispers her threats to him and that was scarier than anything she could have yelled. I’ve realized if I whisper, calmly when disappointed or upset, my children are terrified.

walking dead, the walking dead, Carol, parenting, parenting tips

Always make them feel safe with you, even when you have your doubts

Remember season 4 of the Walking Dead when Carol took Lizzie out to the flower patch and shot her dead? What were her choices? The kid murdered her sister and liked to play with dead things. She was an apocalyptic sociopath. It was just a matter of time before that crazy little bish was killing all living people to make them her undead pets.

Look at the pretty flowers…it’s going to be all right….Bang, bang…. you’re dead.

At least Carol did the kind thing and didn’t scare her before she did it. (I told you kids were a liability.)

Prepare them for the “Real” World

There is no way Carol would ever let her kid play on a no winner or loser soccer team. Life is hard and you need to know that it will let you down. Things don’t always work out the way you planned it and sometimes you have to do things you don’t want to like eat dog or shoot the walker that used to be your neighbor. That’s why she taught the kids at the prison to use guns and knives to survive the zombie apocalypse. In the end, it’s every man, woman and child for themselves.

And my husband says that television rots your brain. I’d say that these parenting tips could make me a better parent….now, or in the event of a zombie apocalypse.

What parenting survival tips have you learned from the Walking Dead?

 

Photos via Walking Dead

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What Would Zayn Malik Do? http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/what-would-zayn-malik-do/ http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/what-would-zayn-malik-do/#comments Thu, 26 Mar 2015 14:59:28 +0000 http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/?p=22933 “Zayn Malik QUIT One Direction!” her voice cracked as she spoke these words. There was no talk of “flabby arms” amongst the ballerinas tonight only distress that Zayn quit One Direction. My girls are too young to care. I like One Direction. They won me over with Little Things. But this situation made me think, […]

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Zayn Malik QUIT One Direction!” her voice cracked as she spoke these words. There was no talk of “flabby arms” amongst the ballerinas tonight only distress that Zayn quit One Direction. My girls are too young to care. I like One Direction. They won me over with Little Things. But this situation made me think, would you leave a high paying career behind to be happy?

I know the thought is terrifying. It’s a giant leap and many of you are shaking your head with a resounding, “Hell, no!” Money isn’t everything but it certainly is important. I’m with Zayn Malik on this one, life’s too short. You’ve got to get your happy! That’s exactly why I started The TRUTH about Motherhood. This is easy for me to say because I already took the leap. It’s always easier to be brave when you’re safely looking up from the bottom of the cliff than standing at the top about to take that first leap into the unknown.

Why did  Zayn Malik quit?

He’s 22, he’s a millionaire and he just wants to be a regular guy. He wants to live while he’s young. I don’t blame him. Money can’t buy you happiness and fame will never get you privacy. I think he’s brave to choose happiness over money. I get that he’s an artist and from the outside looking in, he’s made it. He’s living the dream but maybe the fame part is too much to bear. Who knows, in a couple years, maybe he’ll come back as a solo artist. After all, he is only 22. Besides, there will still be a ONE DIRECTION, just minus Zayn.

Zayn Malik, One Direction, career, choose happiness, life choices

Would you quit the job you have now to follow your dreams and pursue your passions if you had no children or responsibilities like Zayn Malik? Would pursuing your passions make you happier than what you’re currently doing?

For me, it was simple, I’d rather spend the rest of my life doing what I love and working my tail off trying to succeed than make a lot of money doing something that doesn’t make me happy. To me, success is defined by doing something I love and being there to enjoy the moments with the people that I love without having to run out, miss things or not be there when they need me.

I am a writer. I’ll probably never be a millionaire but I don’t care. I want to be happy. I am happy. I am able to be here for my children and the Big Guy when they need me. I get to travel the world, meet interesting people and do things that the average person doesn’t get to do in their entire lifetime because I write. I get to tell stories, share my life with others and get to know wonderful people all over the world from all walks of life. So, would I choose to take the less traveled path….again? Hell yeah.

I’m lucky. I am blessed because every single day. I get to live life on my terms and that is what I want for my children. I have to lead by example. I’m really lucky because I have a husband who completely believes in me and supports my dreams. I’m even luckier that he has a career doing something he loves that actually pays well. We have family around to help out when I need to travel.

Outside of my husband and daughters, I don’t think that most of my family and friends really understand what I do or how I came to choose this path. It chose me. I was presented with options, my fork in the road, when I was pregnant with my daughter. It took me 2 years to choose which path to follow. I was scared, just like you. What if I chose wrong? It wasn’t just about me. It was about all of us.

Still, I’m with Zayn, when given the choice always choose happiness. Choose to follow your bliss. It might not be the popular choice but if it’s right for you, you can’t worry about popularity. Be brave. Be happy.

Do you think Zayn Malik is crazy or crazy smart to choose his happy over money and fame?

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5 Ways to Have an Amazing Spring Break on a Budget http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/spring-break-budget/ http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/spring-break-budget/#comments Sun, 22 Mar 2015 16:55:23 +0000 http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/?p=22917 Our life is always hectic and spring break is one of those times of year that I prefer to NOT go running off on a family vacation to some place awesome like Disney World because, you know, the rest of the world is doing that. I just want to sleep in and enjoy not having to […]

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Our life is always hectic and spring break is one of those times of year that I prefer to NOT go running off on a family vacation to some place awesome like Disney World because, you know, the rest of the world is doing that. I just want to sleep in and enjoy not having to be anywhere. I want to actually enjoy just being and giving our minds a break.

I like to take the time to relax and enjoy my kids. Granted, we get bored so we need to do more than just sit around staring at one another and it wouldn’t be right to make the kids clean the entire break, ahem, right? Yeah, no. I know it wouldn’t be right.

So here are a few budget friendly ideas for your next spring break.

spring break, budget, kids, Land of Nod

Indoor camping

There are so many great things you can do just by staying put. We live in the suburbs so first on our list is indoor camping! The girls got an amazing tent, constellation nightlight and sleeping bags from the Land of Nod this Christmas and I know they love camping out. So, one night (or maybe two) this spring break we will pretend we are camping. I will put up the giant tent, lay out the sleeping bags, we will have hot dogs on the grill and s’mores ( in the microwave because it’s snowing today), tell some ghost stories and let our imaginations go wild. This is one of the perks of small children, those imaginations can take you absolutely everywhere without ever leaving the house. The best part is that all play houses and tents are on sale for 20% off through March 23rd.

Local waterpark or hotel

For the last weekend of spring break we are surprising the girls, meeting their cousins and spending a couple days at the Great Wolf Lodge. We’ve never been so we are super excited and by arriving early, staying only one night and leaving late, we are maximizing the fun on a minimal budget. Also, I searched out an awesome discount and that made it even more affordable. We live in the Midwest and unless we drive or fly a few hundred miles south, we’re going to be surrounded by snow and/or wintery weather mix. I hate the cold but if we go to an indoor water it is a balmy 80 degrees. Now, I was not a fan of indoor waterparks until I had children. I prefer the beach but I have found that at the waterparks, it’s always warm and there are so many different slides, pools and activities that no one ever tells me, “I’m BORED!” You may even want to meet up with a group. We are meeting my sisters and their kids and husbands and celebrating a couple cousins’ birthdays while there. We can’t wait! The 7-year-old is marking her calendar. For an added bonus, take Grandma and relax a little. If you want to get out of the house but don’t want the hassle of added cost of a waterpark, you can always just stay at a local hotel with a pool. The kids will love it.

Visit Family or Friends

If you are watching your budget, why not go visit family or friends? You save yourself the cost of a hotel, you get to spend time reconnecting with the people that you love the most and your kids have a blast hanging out in a new city. I’m lucky my family lives in Chicago and it’s only a 3-hour drive, so it’s an easy couple day trip and the city is full of places to go, foods to eat and people to see that my children don’t get to usually do so everyone wins.

Explore Your own City

Whether you live in a big city or a small one, there are always things to do. Check out a new restaurant that you’ve never tried or visit a boutique or shop that you’ve never been into. There are all kinds of hidden gems that most cities have and no one has the time to try new things because we always do what we know because it’s easy. For instance, there is a wonderful art museum right across the street from my daughter’s ballet school. We never go in because we are always going to ballet. During spring break, we are going to check it out and try a new restaurant downtown. If you want to kick it up a notch, get a play date group and do local scavenger hunt in your own city.

Take a vacation from your regular life

If you ask me, the best thing about spring break is not having to be anywhere so why not just relax. Have a pajama movie day. Spend all day coloring in a coloring book with your kids. Have an at home spa day or give each other makeovers. Just do something that you don’t get to do every day like breakfast for dinner or pizza for breakfast. Most of all just try to enjoy your time with your kids because, as I keep reminding myself, they are only little for a little while.

Bonus: We are getting to test drive a Mitsubishi Outlander for the week, so I’ll be completely taking a vacation from my regular life. Can’t wait to tell you all about it.

Disclosure: While all opinions are my own, I was provided product for review purposed from The Land of Nod.

What is your family doing this spring break?

 

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Fat Girl Walking http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/fat-girl-walking/ http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/fat-girl-walking/#comments Fri, 20 Mar 2015 18:25:06 +0000 http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/?p=22907 There have been days where I’ve looked in the mirror and all I can see is the fat girl I’ve become and nothing else. Those days are over. You know the saying; “One day she believed she could and so she did”? That’s me this morning. I’m doing. I’m a little scared because this is […]

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There have been days where I’ve looked in the mirror and all I can see is the fat girl I’ve become and nothing else. Those days are over. You know the saying; “One day she believed she could and so she did”? That’s me this morning. I’m doing. I’m a little scared because this is the third time I’ve started this journey in 6 years. I’ve yet to get to my destination and I’m an all or nothing kind of person, so either I’m losing or I’m gaining. Not intentionally, mind you.

It just seems if I’m not actively trying to lose, I throw the baby out with the bath water and just eat anything and everything I want. You know the whole, “to hell with it, this days ruined anyways ” attitude. That’s how I got where I’m at today… 100 pounds away from where I need to be.

So, I’m sitting in a green, plastic chair feeling kind of sick in my stomach, you know that feeling you get when you leap without looking? Waiting for my first meeting (first day of the rest of my life and all that). The most humiliating part is over; a stranger has weighed me. She knows my weight. I can’t kill her, so I guess I’d better change it. That’s how I function, deadlines and public shaming.

What’s brought me here today? An airplane ride to Los Angeles was my come to Jesus meeting. Yep, airplane rides always remind me that I need to lose weight. You see, depending on the airline, every flight is a “cross your fingers, pray to God, hope the damn seatbelt fits” situation. It always does but lately, I’ve had to suck in more than I want to.

Then there was the layover in Minneapolis that had me literally running across the entire airport to make my next flight. I REALLY thought I was going to have a heart attack, right there in Minnesota. I was out of breath, coughing and my heart was pounding. I coughed and wheezed and it took me about 15 minutes to recover. Then it happened, I realized that I shouldn’t be putting my life in imminent danger trying to catch a flight. That’s not the call I want my husband and daughters to get.

All I could think, as I was fighting for my breath was…

Fat Girl Walking.

I was sure that someone recorded the entire thing and I was going to end up on Youtube or as a hilarious GIF. That was 3 weeks ago. This morning I’m sitting at Weight Watchers.

I’ve been here before. The first time, it worked and then we moved mid weight loss journey and everything got screwed up because if you’ve ever done Weight Watchers, you know that your meeting leader and the people in the meeting make a big difference. Then, I started Weight Watchers only to find out 2 weeks later that I was pregnant. This is my third time and my last time because this time, I’m not stopping.

Last month, I wrote a post about the Burden of being a Fat Woman. Then I met and heard from some incredible women who said that they could relate. All I could see when I looked at them was amazing women. Not fat. Not obesity. I saw their beautiful kind hearts and it made me sad that they could identify with my burden. Why couldn’t I do the same for myself? That’s when I decided to change the things I can, accept the things I can’t and to have the wisdom to know the difference.

I will never be 107 pounds again, nor do I even want to be because when I was, I was not healthy. I was probably the unhealthiest I’ve ever been in my entire life. I can accept that. I want to be healthy and I want to be happy. I deserve to be happy. I want to be around in 50 years. I want to see my daughters go to prom, graduate from college, get married, have babies of their own and be happy. I want to live, not just exist. I want to be able to run across the damn Minneapolis airport if I want to without being in danger of dropping dead. I can change that. I know the difference between what is unattainable and what is realistic.

My mind is right. My heart is ready and my body desperately needs this. I deserve this. I’m doing this.

I’m letting go of my fat girl status.

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All Little Girls Think They’re Fat http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/girls-think-theyre-fat/ http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/girls-think-theyre-fat/#comments Thu, 19 Mar 2015 15:31:11 +0000 http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/?p=22900 “I’m fat! Just look at my flabby arms!” This is what I overheard amongst the ballerinas today. 11-year-olds should not be worrying about flabby arms, especially since not one of the 10 preteen girls included in this conversation are fat or had flabby arms. My heart sunk and my stomach turned as I realized if […]

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“I’m fat! Just look at my flabby arms!”

This is what I overheard amongst the ballerinas today. 11-year-olds should not be worrying about flabby arms, especially since not one of the 10 preteen girls included in this conversation are fat or had flabby arms. My heart sunk and my stomach turned as I realized if these lean, dancers think they’re fat, what if all little girls think they’re fat? I didn’t say a word because I was speechless.

Every Wednesday, I take my daughters to ballet. They were in class when I heard the girls talking. This has been my routine for nearly 8 years. At least 4 classes a week, I am surrounded by a plethora of beautiful, young, graceful, strong and lean girls (ages 3 and up). It’s always been a place of positivity and the focus is on the dance moves, not the size of the dancer’s ass. Why would it be?

My girls have danced with the city ballet practically since the moment they could tell me that was what they wanted to do but I went in with my eyes open. I’ve heard the horror stories of ballerinas who are malnourished and have eating disorders. I know these are brought on by the constant focus on body and weight that is necessary for any athlete.

Having battled severe eating disorders myself, I promised myself a few things 1) I would never negative talk in front of my girls 2) I would do everything in my power to instill high self-confidence and positive body image and 3) if they were ever involved in a situation where someone made weight the focus, I’d pull my daughters out because it’s not worth it. I won’t allow anyone to undo the self-esteem that I’ve spent years building.

Perfection is not achievable, mostly because it’s a moving target, and no girl should feel that her self-worth has anything to do with her weight. Only in ballet, like many sports, it is hard to be in top performance form if your body is not at its absolute best so even if there isn’t a blatant focus and criticism of body size and shape, it’s there, lurking like the boogie man just waiting to destroy your daughter’s self-confidence. I know it and, apparently, so do these girls. How could they not living in a world where thigh gaps and bikini bridges are aspirations.

I wanted to grab those girls and hug them and shout to them, “No! Your arms are not flabby. You are perfect. Your body is strong and beautiful and amazing. It is what moves you on the stage. It is what moves you in the world. Your body is what makes you….YOU!” I wanted to, like I wished someone would’ve done to me the first time I looked in the mirror and saw my 12-year-old body and saw imperfection in perfection. But I couldn’t because I wasn’t supposed to be there. I wasn’t supposed to hear that. They aren’t my daughters.

At that moment, I was too busy praying that my daughter, just inside the classroom, didn’t hear this slightly older ballerina who she looks up to calling herself “flabby” and “fat.” Because if you’ve ever been involved in the dance world, you know, there is nothing a tiny ballerina looks up to more than a bigger one, even if it’s only by a level. I held my breath and waited to see if she mentioned anything. She didn’t.

You see, little girls are like sponges; they absorb everything that they see and hear and once they know it, they can’t unknow it. They keep it and pick at it like a scab. I know this is true because my own daughters have even began to pick up on subtle cues, ones that I don’t even know I’m doing. They know how to decipher a hint and they can figure things out. They are not oblivious. I went home last night and began to think of all the ways I hint at my dissatisfaction with my own body; long sighs in the mirror, tugging at my shirt, tiny fits of rage when trying on clothes in the dressing room. I can’t do that anymore. They’re too smart. If they’re unhealthy or think they are fat, I feel like it’s my personal parenting fail.

I feel terrible that I didn’t grab those little girls and tell them how perfect and strong and amazing they are. I had to do something so I emailed the Director of the Ballet (a mom of two small girls, a ballerina and a friend) and I told her what had happened because I feel like going silent makes me a part of the problem. I want to be part of the solution.

What would you have done if you heard a group of young girls calling themselves fat?

 

 

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If You Send Your Kid to Public School, You’re the Worst http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/public-school-vs-private-school/ http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/public-school-vs-private-school/#comments Wed, 18 Mar 2015 15:28:49 +0000 http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/?p=22887 Hi, my name is Debi and I am a product of public school. Before you get your panties in a wad about the title, this is in response to a post on Slate called, If You Send Your Kid to Private School, You Are a Bad Person. Let me start by saying (or admitting, as […]

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Hi, my name is Debi and I am a product of public school. Before you get your panties in a wad about the title, this is in response to a post on Slate called, If You Send Your Kid to Private School, You Are a Bad Person.

Let me start by saying (or admitting, as Slate would have you believe it’s a crime) that I send my children to private school. GASP! I don’t really believe you are a bad person for sending your kid to public school. I believe that as parents we all do the best we can for our kids. If trying our best makes us terrible then we’re all the worst kind of parents.

I didn’t go to private school and neither did my husband. We grew up blue collar. I am one of six kids who had a stay-at-home mom and a father who worked as a forklift driver in a factory. We survived on one blue-collar salary, Tang, public school and all the gluten. We survived. We overcame but I’m not sure any of us thrived in that situation.

Let me put this in further perspective, I was a gifted child in all honors classes and still I was not challenged. I was bored and by the time I was in high school, I was so unchallenged that I hated going to school because it felt like a waste of my time.

I wasn’t thriving because even the best at my public school wasn’t good enough.

When I had children, I knew that if I could afford it, I wanted to send them to private school. More specifically, I wanted to send them to Catholic school because I liked the idea of more challenging academics with constant spiritual nurturing incorporated into their daily routine. Yes, you can do that at home on your own but I like the idea of spirituality and faith being present daily and, perhaps more importantly, how it molds them and the children they spend their days with.

We are not independently wealthy. We are middle class parents who have made the decision that we want to give our children the best opportunity to grow and learn at a young age. In making this decision, we have accepted the fact that we may have to sacrifice other things. Things like extravagant vacations and a larger house. Don’t feel sorry for us, we still travel a couple times a year, our home is in a wonderful neighborhood in the suburbs and there is always plenty to eat. We made the decision to invest in their future but it’s not compromising our present in any way that is too much for us to bear.

The author of the article said that parents who put their children in private school are bad parents because we are doing a disservice to the other children of the world because after all, doesn’t every child deserve a great education? Yes, they do but it is not my place to save the world. It is my responsibility to do for my children. The only way the author’s scenario works is if you take private schools out of the equation entirely. Then, and only then, will all focus shift to bettering the public schools which I wholeheartedly agree needs to be done.

Those who follow her idea of putting our children into public schools with subpar curriculums now to make education better unintentionally make our children martyrs to the cause. I’m not willing to sacrifice my children’s education in hopes that I might be able to make the world a more level playing ground for future generations of hypothetical children. Meanwhile, failing the two I gave birth to. It is not my right to sacrifice their future. It is my duty to protect it.

By this author’s logic, I can argue that if you have the means and you don’t put your child in private school, then you don’t love your child at all. If I am a monster for caring for my children and doing my best to give them every opportunity to excel in this world then so be it because at the end of the day, my only responsibility is to my children.

Raising good humans who are functional, contributing and caring members of society is literally the most important thing a parent will ever do with their life. This is done by being present, be involved and giving them the guidance to achieve their hopes and dreams and that all starts with a good education. The system is failing the public schools, not me.

Are we bad people because we didn’t send our children to public school?

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Nature Versus Nurture, Pans in Your Oven and Other Questionable Life Choices? http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/nature-versus-nurture/ http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/nature-versus-nurture/#comments Tue, 17 Mar 2015 15:17:50 +0000 http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/?p=22880 I’m doing my own social experiment on nature versus nurture and I want you all to be apart of it. I shared a simple photo on Facebook yesterday of an oven full of pots and pans. I find this completely normal. In fact, my own oven is full of pots and pans right now! What […]

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I’m doing my own social experiment on nature versus nurture and I want you all to be apart of it. I shared a simple photo on Facebook yesterday of an oven full of pots and pans. I find this completely normal. In fact, my own oven is full of pots and pans right now! What struck me is that the caption said, “When you’re about to turn on the oven but then you remember that you’re Hispanic.”

latino, nature, nurture, women, southern, pans in oven

 

I shared it because for a minute I was shocked and thought, “ Wait, everybody doesn’t do this?” Well, doesn’t everybody? The answer is no, everybody doesn’t…but most people do and not just Latinos. But enough people don’t do it that 45 people weighed in on this status update. Who knew storing your pots and pans in your oven was so controversial?

Nature versus nurture, do we learn it or is it in our DNA?

nature versus nurture , latino, nature, nurture, women, southern, pans in oven

So it made me start to think, some of these things I do, are they nature or nurture? Is it a “Latina” thing? A “daughter of a southern woman” thing? A “ Chicago” thing? A “human” thing? A “Woman” thing? Did I learn these or was I born like this? So I decided to put it to a poll, this is where you all come in. I need to hear your answers to help me figure this all out and understand the mystery that is this “Debi” thing.

 

  1. Grilled cheese….do you put sugar on it? (Yes)
  2. Milk…do you put ice in it? (Yes)
  3. “Know what I mean?” …Doesn’t everyone ask this after they say something?
  4. Pots and Pans…do you store them in your oven? (Where else?)
  5. Eggs….do you put ketchup on them? (I put ketchup on them if they are scrambled, jelly if they are over easy)
  6. Hard shell or soft shell tacos? (I’ve never eaten a hard shell taco in my life. In Mexico the only hard shells I ever saw were Tostadas.)
  7. Pizza…thin or deep dish? (As a rule, deep dish but a like a good Sicilian.)
  8. Hot dogs…ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise? (Ketchup and mustard only.)
  9. Pop or soda? (Pop)
  10. Make-up…is it a daily requirement? (Only if you’re going some place where you care what the people think, so on most days…no!)
  11. Spanking kids….do you do it to your own kids? Would you allow others to do it to them? (No and Hell, no!)
  12. Can you say the word “Sampler” or does it completely disappear into your nasal cavity? (Asking for a friend)
  13. Vicks Vapo rub and Vaseline…do you use it? For what and how often? ( Yes, for everything and all the time.)
  14. How do you say this word? Cabinet. (I say kab-uh-nit. My family makes fun of me. They say kab-nit. They say it wrong! I have proof.)
  15. When your kid gets hurt, do you do Sana, Sana , kiss their booboos or say rub some dirt on it? (I sana, sana colita de rana and then I kiss it and make it all better because…you know, mom spit cures everything but stupid.)

Ok, I am dying to hear your answers because these are things that I thought were completely normal but have gotten some weird looks and comments on when I’ve said or done them before so I want to know, what do you do? Answer any of the questions above and weigh in in the comments. I really want to figure this out.

Nature versus nurture, which is it?

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Co-Sleeping is Not for Sissies http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/co-sleeping-for-life/ http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/co-sleeping-for-life/#comments Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:05 +0000 http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/?p=22861 Did you know that co-sleeping was a lifetime sleeping choice? If you are a new parent or parent-to-be thinking of co-sleeping, STOP, collaborate and most importantly, listen!! Sure, that pink, squishy-faced, little newborn is irresistible. You can’t say no and you just don’t want to miss a giggle, sigh or breath and especially not a […]

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Did you know that co-sleeping was a lifetime sleeping choice? If you are a new parent or parent-to-be thinking of co-sleeping, STOP, collaborate and most importantly, listen!!

Sure, that pink, squishy-faced, little newborn is irresistible. You can’t say no and you just don’t want to miss a giggle, sigh or breath and especially not a cuddle so co-sleeping seems the perfect solution. Be warned those beauties grow into toddlers and then into kids and eventually into tweens.

It’s bad enough we can never pee alone. If you ever want to sleep alone in your bed with your husband again and not end up permanently sleeping in separate rooms, then just say no. Hell, be inhumane and let them cry it out. That is, unless you want them to sleep with you forever. At this point, I’m afraid they’ll be trading in my bed for their husband’s in 20 years. Hey my kid’s have done crazier things. Meanwhile, we’re having to sneak around like teens just to have sex.

co-sleeping, family bed, life choice, cry it out, sleeping apart

Is Co-sleeping really a lifetime commitment?

Because that part wasn’t in any book I read. I thought co-sleeping was temporary, transitional, like lovies and binkies and night lights. Nobody told me that I was committing to it forever and if I tried to stop it was a direct afront to the very bond we had forged as parent and child. Did you know if you tell a 7-year-old that she can’t co-sleep with you, it’s the same as saying you don’t love her? According to her it is!

Believe me, I used to be the biggest co-sleeping advocate around. I guess, deep down, I still am but recently, my 7-year-old has decided that every night around 1 a.m. she “needs” to sleep with me. She climbs in bed, cuddles up to me like a little monkey and then the thrashing and kicking begins.

Oh wait, maybe I’m just bitter because my 7 and 10-year-old fought non-stop for 2 hours last night over who will be “sleeping with mommy” with absolutely no consideration for the Bug Guy. He has been reduced to a bedtime gypsy, an exhausted shell of a man who sleeps among the butterflies and unicorns in a sea of pink. He’s the lucky one.

If you think a toddler hurts when they kick you in the nose or headbutt you with a rogue noggin, can you imagine a tween with feet as big as your own feels like? It hurts. A LOT! Don’t get me wrong; I love the middle of the night cuddles and sweet little girl’s gangly arms wrapped around me first thing in the morning. But when do I ever just get a moment to sit in peaceful quiet? These apron strings are choking me out.

I adore butterfly kisses and the sweet sound of a little voice whispering sweet nothings in my ear. But sometimes, a mom just needs some sleep; uncompromised, more than 7 inches of the bed, straight through the night, no waking and no blows to the head sleep. You know what I mean?

Last night, I woke up in a cold sweat and I swear I heard them chanting from beside me, “Hell no! We won’t go!” Then I realized I was still dreaming. Then I awoke and I swore I heard them chanting from their room, “Co-Sleepers for LIFE!” But when I ran to check on them, they were sound asleep, wrapped around one another like pythons. Adorable.

Why must the price of cuddling with your baby, co-sleeping, be a lifetime sentence of never sleeping alone or in peace ever again? You know I think I’m going to start doing some research (necessity is the mother of al invention and all that jazz) and write a book….how to stop co-sleeping because I think that needs to be disclosed.Stay tuned!

What’s your stance on co-sleeping, love it or hate it?

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The New Must Attend Blog Conference #WeALLGrow http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/weallgrow-summit/ http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/weallgrow-summit/#comments Wed, 11 Mar 2015 16:41:42 +0000 http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/?p=22847 Recently, I went to the #WeAllGrow Summit held at the Line Hotel in Los Angeles put together by Ana Flores and the LBC crew. This was my first exclusively Latina conference and it was amazing. Actually, it was life changing. #WeALLGrow Summit exceeded all of my expectations. Seriously. At this point in my blogging career, I have […]

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Recently, I went to the #WeAllGrow Summit held at the Line Hotel in Los Angeles put together by Ana Flores and the LBC crew. This was my first exclusively Latina conference and it was amazing. Actually, it was life changing.

the Line Hotel, Los Angeles, latina, influencer, #WeAllGrow, conference

#WeALLGrow Summit exceeded all of my expectations. Seriously. At this point in my blogging career, I have been to several conferences and I know that some are strictly for learning (though at this point, I’m finding that most conferences are teaching for beginners), others are for networking and some, well, some you are just paying a couple thousand dollars to hang out with your friends but not #WeAllGrow Summit. Ana Flores took this conference to the next level because there were no wasted days and each session I attended, I learned something new, even if it was just one thing.

When I arrived, I was a little nervous. Like I said, I’d never been to a conference exclusively for Latinos. The reason I was nervous? Well, while I know lots of bloggers (and they know me) I feel on the fringes as far as the Latina blogging community is concerned. It’s a really tight knit community and I knew very few Latina bloggers.

YouTube, latina, influencer, #WeAllGrow, conference, the Line Hotel, Los Angeles

I could count on one hand how many of the bloggers attending that I’d actually ever met in person and on two hands, those who I have known online. I believe there were around 300 in attendance. I loved the intimate size of it compared to larger conferences. I think I actually said hi, at least once, to most everyone.

From the moment I arrived at LAX, I was welcomed with open arms, starting with my airport share ride buddy, Yoly Mason, who was sweet and kind (and did I mention that she is a SEO mastermind? I didn’t find that part out until she was speaking at the SEO session). She put me at ease without even knowing it.

When we arrived at the YouTube Pretreat, Yoly introduced me to MaríaJosé Ovalle whom I hit it off with immediately. You know those people you meet and you feel like you’ve been friends with forever? That’s Maria Jose. She is lovely, funny and down to earth plus she knows a whole lot about fashion and beauty!

Maria Jose Ovalle, YouTube, latina, influencer, #WeAllGrow, conference, the Line Hotel, Los Angeles

I’ve been wanting to step up my vlogging game and have no idea where to begin, so this pretreat was perfect and useful. As bloggers arrived, I met ladies that I had been talking to in the FB group for the past few months like Rocio Mora. One-by-one, we said hello. There were no awkward tensions where you found yourself face-to-face with someone you’d been talking online with only to have them look right through you in person.

I also met many bloggers that I had never known before like Liz Beth and each and every one said hello, had conversation and no one ever made me feel like they were looking for someone bigger. (You know what I’m talking about…the Tier 1 blog scan so many of us have seen in the eyes of fellow bloggers at conferences mid-conversation). Hell, Astrid Rivera even let me store my luggage in her car and she didn’t even know me. Everyone was so nice. I spent the day learning loads of helpful tips and meeting lots of interesting women. You can read all about how to make your YouTube channel rock over here.

YouTube, latina, influencer, #WeAllGrow, conference, the Line Hotel, Los Angeles, Claudia Krusch

I roomed with Claudia Krusch, who has been to several Latino conferences and it was nice to have such a positive person guiding me through my first experience. She knew everyone and if I hadn’t already met them, she introduced me. That was just day one!

The bottom line is that everyone I met, even for the first time, was kind and welcoming. The true spirit of the conference, the people and the culture, was palpable. We all know that if one of us grows ( succeeds) we all succeed and there is room enough for all of us. There is no need to knock or keep someone else down to feel better about ourselves or grow our blogs. I wish every conference could be this way but as we all know, that is not the way it is and this is what sets #WeALLGrow apart from the rest and why I will be making this an annual conference to attend and so should you.

latina, influencer, #WeAllGrow, conference

I want to tell you more and share all the great tips I learned to improve your blog but I’m going to have to make this a series because I’m already at 733 words! To be continued…

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Happy Golden Birthday to the Child who Made me a Mom http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/happy-golden-birthday-to-the-child-who-made-me-a-mom/ http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/happy-golden-birthday-to-the-child-who-made-me-a-mom/#comments Tue, 10 Mar 2015 15:43:44 +0000 http://www.motherhoodthetruth.com/?p=22835 Happy Birthday, Bella! Ten years ago today, the most important thing in my life happened… I became a mother. I can’t believe I’ve been a mom for an entire decade. It feels like yesterday. I don’t even remember my life before my daughters were born. It all seems so trivial now. I was not ready. […]

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Happy Birthday, Bella!

Ten years ago today, the most important thing in my life happened… I became a mother. I can’t believe I’ve been a mom for an entire decade. It feels like yesterday. I don’t even remember my life before my daughters were born. It all seems so trivial now.

birth, birthday

I was not ready. I thought I was but I had no idea what being a mother really meant. I was prepared for changing diapers, kissing booboos and 3 a.m. feedings but I never, in a million years, could have known that it meant falling deeply, completely and totally head over heels in love with the vernix covered miracle that I would meet on that day. God was she beautiful.

baby-first-birthday-tt

I don’t mean in the traditional way like when you admire a painting or a flower. No I mean in the way a sunset is breathtaking because you know you are looking at the work of God. Looking upon my Bella, my miracle, for the first time was like flying for the first time or seeing the Grand Canyon in person. It was next level, mind blowing love. It was surreal beauty and it was the moment I knew my purpose, my destiny. That tiny bundle of everything, she made me whole.

baby-second-birthday-tt

When she was born, I was transfixed watching her tiny head come into the world via a mirror. With each push, I was closer to forever. My heart was racing. It hurt like hell but I didn’t care because all I wanted to do was hold her in my arms. Have you ever wanted anything that much? Can anyone ever want anything as much as to meet the child they’ve been growing inside of them for 10 months? I don’t think so. It is a very unique situation.

third-birthday

I remember the relief that comes with that tiny cry and I remember being filled with sheer, overwhelming joy. I laughed and cried, at the same time. Honestly, it is the closet thing to what motherhood is; profound bliss and heartbreaking misery all in one fell swoop but worth every single moment of it. I would have endured 10,000 unmedicated transition labors just to glimpse your face once.

Bellas-family-4th-birthday-21409-014

Since my Bella was born, I have spent every moment dreading the moment when she grows up and leaves. That truly is the irony of loving something so much, one day, if you truly love it, you must let it go. That’s the part that scares me because I love my children so much and so fiercely ( like all mothers) that the thought of growing up and letting go guts me every time.

 

 

So, per usual, I find myself celebrating this amazing child that I had the privilege of bringing into this world and retain the honor of loving on a daily basis and simultaneously, sad because a decade has gone by in a flash. She’s halfway to leaving me.

 

I don’t know how I will handle it when the time comes. I suppose I will rage in my way against the letting go but I will never let her know because this is how it’s supposed to go. They come into our lives, make us better people, we raise them and love them and then send them out into the world to follow their dreams.

Seven, birthday,kids birthday

 

Staying behind like a beacon of light or a soft place to land. If we do our job, they won’t need us anymore but they will still want us. We are their home, and always will be, just as we were when they grew in our womb. No one ever tells you that while it’s happening, they have entangled themselves inside your heart like a tumor and will remain there forever.

birthday, slumber party

My dearest Bella,

Today is your golden birthday. You are a 10-years-old, my sweet girl. Today, your father and I have been parents for 3, 650 days. You made us better people. You made us a family. I love you more than mere words could ever convey. It’s silly to even try to verbalize what our hearts feel for you.

Bella, Frozen, Birthday Party, Elsa, Olaf, Anna, Cristophe

 

You are amazing, courageous, independent, intelligent,funny, charismatic, beautiful on the inside and out and one of the kindest, most caring girls I have ever known. You can be and do anything you want to in this world. Don’t you forget that, ever. I am so proud to be your mother. I love you to the moon and back, I love you more than that. Thank you for letting me love you. Happy Golden birthday, baby! I hope it is as amazing as you are, my sweet.

XOXO

Mommy

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