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girl,bench, period, auntflo,menstruation,gym

Your period, that magical time of month when everything in the world irritates you.

Remember when you were in 7th grade, way back before your mom would allow you to wear those whorish tampons that all the “cool” girls were wearing? Remember the good old days of wearing maxi-pads that had wings and were as big as a 747? Way before “First Moon Period Parties.” Back when your period, snuck up on you like a ninja and shivved you, usually someplace public, when you least expected it like right in the middle of confirmation or during your first boy/girl dance. Then you bled out like the near survivor of a shark attack? Way before your lady bits had a one of a kind special delivery in the mail each month.Hello aunt Flo, how the hell are ya? Yeah, good times.

Remember wearing a sweater “just in case” you had to McGyver it into an “accident” hiding cover up because you wore WHITE pants to school during your PERIOD? Yeah, me too. Puberty sucked for me. Besides the sprouting of all the hair in all the weird places and boobs growing (or not) you felt like a freak with pimples, greasy hair and if you were really lucky braces. But even with all of this, there was one silver lining …the missing of the gym class, more specifically swimming. You got to instead sit in the bleachers and hang with the other afflicted girls.

In middle school I was an awkward, gangly thing of a girl who had a growth spurt in every direction. I lost my center of gravity and any shred of self-esteem went into witness protection. But the period, as new and disgusting as it was to me in those first months, saved me from having to put on a bathing suit and jump in the water, emerging like the worlds ugliest drowned rat because, oh yeah, my dad wouldn’t let me shave my legs so, well, you can imagine what all that hair looked like wet. I did what any Latina girl my age would do, I grew a small mustache to distract people from everything else. No, not really. Not on purpose anyways. At least in regular gym class, I could cover it all up with nifty 1980’s tube socks.

From the moment I figured out that my “period’ could get me out of swimming, I immediately had at least 2 a month. That was 2 weeks a month of sitting on the bench writing notes and talking about boys. It was glorious while it lasted and then in 8th grade I got a female gym teacher who I’m certain charted my cycle because it was back to one week on the bench and 3 looking like a drowned Mexican rat. Once again and for the next 28 years, my period never got me out of anything. In fact it got me into a lot of hard work, what with all the sex, pregnancies and children and all. Until today.

My period rescued me and used its power for good and not evil, for once.

In the past year, my girls have really begun to understand puberty and what is going to happen thanks to our dog who went into heat. They both know that the hair, boob fairy and period are all on its way. I’ve also assured them this is all very natural and I will make sure that they have all the necessary items available, including a razor, an aesthetician for those out of control eyebrows and lip hair, Midol, a good bra and dark chocolate. We are prepared.

Then this morning, I woke up feeling more than a little crampy on day 4 of flood gate shark week so I said to the girls, “ Girls, I don’t think we can go to the pool today. “ It was met with the expected, whiney, “WHY??????” (because to be honest they beg me daily to go to the pool, rain or shine) and I calmly told them the truth. “Well, I’m having my period and it’s one of those “heavy” days. I’m feeling really crampy and I just don’t think my tampon would survive the walk down to the pool.” To which my 7-year-old ( yes, the same one who yelled that I was going into heat once before in a public restroom) knowingly shook her head, turned to her sister and said, “See, mom’s going through puberty again.” Then she said, “It’s okay mommy. That would be gross. Let’s do crafts.” No argument, no long sigh, no whining.

I don’t know about you but I’m thinking I might be having two periods a month again. I figure she’s got at least 4/5 years before she figures out any different. God, I love being a woman.

Period party, anyone?

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fairy, humor, explaining puberty, breasts

Have you had the conversation about breasts with your daughters yet?

I spent so much time trying to figure out when the perfect time to explain menstruation, puberty and where babies come from with my daughters that I completely forgot to talk about breasts.

Yes, they know that girls develop breasts sometime between being their age (6 & 9) and my age ( grown*) but, as I found out a couple weeks ago, they have no idea how one gets from point A to point B. Hell, maybe they believe there is a boob fairy; second cousin twice removed of the tooth fairy (she’s a giver).

Anyways, as the mom of two little girls who will one day be young ladies I try to make it my mission to make life full of “teachable moments”.  I’ve gotten pretty good at it too, if I do say so myself.

Flowers on the side of the road at a makeshift memorial, I explain how young drivers should always be on the defensive and not be texting or on the phone. I explain that driving is a full-contact sport that demands all of your attention or you could end up with a memorial on the side of the road or causing someone else’s memorial on the side of the road. Vomiting and dizzy from the stomach flu, I see the perfect opportunity to discuss the effects of alcohol and relay how this is exactly how it feels when you drink too much.  By the way, my 6-year-old has committed herself to never drinking more than half a beer and then calling a cab.

Sometimes that backfires on me like the time she was frantic that to have a baby the doctor must cut you open and rip the baby out (my sister had a c-section after the baby was stuck) so to “help” I explained that babies come into the world via your vagina and there isn’t usually a surgery in which a doctor cuts your stomach open. I thought I was helping. She went ghost white, looked down at her vagina, sized up the situation and has sworn off children for her lifetime. Wait until she realizes that sex is what puts babies into bellies that come out of vaginas.

So, the other day, as I was driving our daughters to ballet, we passed a coed group of neighborhood kids playing basketball in a driveway. Immediately, the girls began to argue whether or not a slender, young girl was in fact a “boy” or a “girl”.

Then, I hear this from my backseat.

A discussion about breasts.

6-year-old:  “That was a girl who just made that basket. Girls play basketball!”

9-year-old: “Yeah, well, it was a boy because his chest was FLAT like a pancake!”

I explain to them that girls can be flat chested. And some girls develop breasts later than others. In fact, I was completely flat chested until I was 15. I am talking undershirt city. Hell, they stopped making undershirts big enough for a girl that old. Back then, a camisole wasn’t even an option and tank tops were only for summer, not a fashion layering piece. My girls and anyone who has met me knows that I am no longer flat chested. Apparently, good things come to those who wait. For those interested, here’s How to get bigger breasts naturally by Sandra Hale.

Take that girl, who shall remain nameless, who got her size B boobs at 11 and liked to point out the fact that I didn’t need a bra yet. My size D’s say hellllloooooo.

9-year-old: “ Uhm, mom….YOU have MELONS!”

Giggle.Giggle. Rabble. Rubble.

6-year-old, very concerned, “Mommy, I don’t want melons. I want apples!”

Me: “ Well, kiddo, you get whatever God and genetics give ya! Sorry.”

6-year-old: “Mommy, what’s genetics?”

Me: “It’s the genes you get passed down from your parents.”

Immediately, I see terror in her eyes and then I hear this.

6-year-old, head bowed and whispering a prayer, “Dear God, please don’t give me melons. I want juicy apples! In the name of the father, the son & the Holy Spirit! Amen!”

I look in the rear view mirror and see her doing the sign of the cross.

Then I died….laughing (on the inside like any good mom.)

Here’s hoping the boob fairy is good to you my little sweet and you are blessed with the “juicy” apple breasts that you are hoping for but I have a sneaking suspicion you won’t since you come from a long line of melons.




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Captain’s Log: Day 14/ The End is near.

It’s day 14 of our winter break and quite honestly, I can say I am more ready for my kids to go back to school than I have ever been for anything in my entire life, except for evicting them from my uterus in anticipation of meeting them for the first time. I.AM.NOT.THAT.MOM! I swear I am not. Normally, I just want it to go on and on and soak in all the moments but not this time. This time I want them to go back to school so that I can get back to a schedule and have my house back in some kind of order. This overwhelming feeling of doneness crept in about 2 days ago. 14 days is too long and I still have 2 more days and well, I’m running low on Xanax.

Look, it’s been great but this winter break thing has run it’s course. I’ve realized that I am one of those people that misses my children more when they are at school.I figured that out a couple months ago. See I used to always threaten to “homeschool” the girls if they misbehaved. Knowing full well that they’d never want to miss out on hanging out with their friends to be stuck under my feet. Then the 6-year-old started asking if I could homeschool her and I realized I was afraid. Very afraid. I started having nightmares of spending 24 hours a day, every day with my moody elementary schoolers. We were playing a game of homeschool chicken and I was about to bob and weave to save myself. Damn that little evil genius. Needless to say, I no longer utter the word…shhhhh (whisper) “homeschool” anywhere in a 25 mile radius of my children. Hell, I am risking my sanity just typing it.

I’m not crotchety. I swear I am not.I love holidays and snuggles and warm fires and fuzzy memories with my sweet girls but we’ve gotten a mountain of snow and I’ve got a bad case of cabin fever and now, in a cruel twist of fate, the weather forecast has issued a winter weather advisory for tomorrow night ( squashing my travel plans to Chicago for my nephews 2nd birthday….Boo! Happy Birthday Ayden, Titi Debi loves you!) but as if that weren’t bad enough they are calling for 6-12 more inches of accumulation Sunday night. SUNDAY.FRICKING.NIGHT! That will mean no one is going to school or work on Monday. No.ONE!!!

As I read the weather report I could feel myself getting all squirrely. I was like a trapped animal. My mind zipping from idea to idea to try to remedy and avert this crisis. It’s 10 below zero and I am fully prepared to borrow a snowblower and plow our way the 10 blocks to school.


How is your winter break going? Are you soaking it all in? Or has your winter break passed it’s expiration date?

**Sorry Girls, if you are 25 and this is 2031 and you are finally reading this…I loved you every single day but 16 days is too long for a winter break. I think 12 is about right. You’ll see when you have your own.

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menstruation, co-sleeping, co-toileting, attachment parenting, humor, raising girls

Today, I am going to tell you a little story about raising daughters and menstruation. No, it has nothing to do with half-naked selfies but it just might be TMI so if you are squeamish about lady parts or feminine hygiene products and the such, I should warn you do not read any further. If you faint at the sight of blood? Stop! Do not continue reading! Back the truck up and run in the other direction.Go. Run. Fast. It’s about to get real up in here. For real, for real!

As many of you know, I have two little girls that I am trying to raise with self-confidence, independence and verve for life. I want them to live life so fully that they just grab it with both hands and jump. I want them to live life on their own terms. I want happiness and equality for them but more than anything else, I want them to always know they can come to me.about.anything. ANYTHING! That includes pubic hair, menstruation, boobs and yes, even sex, masturbation and childbirth.

I parent with honesty and openness. I want them to ask questions. We talk about everything. If they ask, I answer. I am trying to build trust and respect to compliment the unconditional love. I want them to not only be children that I love but people that I like and I hope they feel the same way about me one day but today, I am their mommy and my job is to mother them.

Anyways, sometimes even when you think you are doing it right, things get muddled and you are left wondering WTH just happened? This is what happened to me yesterday in the bathroom at Panda Express. Don’t judge.

The girls had their well visits yesterday and got a surprise Hepatitis vaccination and flu mist sprung on them. That did not go over very well so to “help the medicine go down” we promised them a dinner out. It was the least we could do.

In the middle of dinner, my littlest one informed me that she MUST go to the potty or she will “actually” pee herself. Her words, not mine. Obviously, that’s kid code for four-alarm code yellow. I realized that I could use a little tinkle and check myself, so off we went. Of course, we travel in packs, where one goes, so shall the other and with that, per usual, we had 3 girls in a stall. Only once we got in there, I realized shark week was back with a vengeance.This was a straight up Jaws emergency. If you know what I mean?

FYI, public restrooms are not the place to tackle the subject of menstruation.

The girls have always gone into the bathroom stall with me in public places if I have to use the facilities. Its just the way it’s always been; co-sleeping and co-toileting, attachment parenting gone wild.I don’t want them to get abducted but I also don’t want to give step-by-step directions on how to use a tampon yet either.  I practice discretionary, ninja-like tampon changing skills. They know that sometimes mommy gets a “booboo”. They think a tampon is like a Band-Aid for your vagina and they are sort of right. But they are getting older and we just had the conversation in May about puberty and periods, thanks to a dog that went into premature heat.

I asked the girls to turn around. They do and I successfully execute my quick change and flush. This is nothing I ever thought I would be doing in my life, then again I never thought I would randomly be smelling baby’s butts in public restaurants either. How the mighty have fallen. Remember, a baby changes everything and all that shit?

Only, life hates me and the toilet is one of those green, low-flow, crunchy granola Woodstock, no bra-wearing, hairy armpit bastards and no match for the super duper, no-holds barred, epic nuclear- reactive, cotton torpedo that I needed to use that day to keep the sharks at bay. So everything flushes. Except.the.Damn.Tampon! It re-appears waterlogged and even larger than before and as it does, in slow motion, both girls turn around to see it breaking the surface of the pink toilet water. Then this happened.

Menstruation happened!

Gabs (screaming at the top of her lungs): “Oh no! Mommy, I saw blood!!!!”

Me: “Remember I told you what happened with the dog?”

Gabs (whispering and completely serious): “Oh my God, Mommy, did you just go into heat???”

Me (dying of laughter on the inside, trying my damnest to keep a straight face): “No honey. People don’t go into heat. We have periods.”

Gabs: “Oh because I was scared we were going to have to keep you inside because all the daddies in the neighborhood were going to try to jump on you.”

Then, I died.

And just like that shark week wasn’t so bad anymore. Have you ever been caught in a state of shark week? How did you explain menstruation to your little one?

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stress incontinence, mommy issues, life after giving birth, peepee, sneezing, Poise, Impressa

This is a piece that I originally wrote for Aiming Low about Stress incontinence but I had to share it here as well because it makes me giggle. I know my readers and I know 99% of you can relate to this post.Kegel on my friends and enjoy.

What ever happened to doctor patient privilege?

Is there no dignity left in the world?

I was on the phone talking to our new insurance company agent and was being interrogated asked, what I assumed to be, standard medical questions. I expected them to be somewhat personal; it is the nature of the beast. I had no idea the degree. How could I ever know that anyone would ask me if I ever, you know, tinkled when I sneezed?

Not as personal as the therapist asking me if I talk to God…and does he answer. (My God woman, I just met you I’m not telling you what the voices in my head say or don’t say.)
I digress.

The nurse politely and matter of factly asked me about different conditions that I may currently have or have had in the past according to my medical history. I was prepared to explain that time that I had that gerbil removed or the time I thought my headache was brain cancer and insisted the doctor ran every test imaginable. I was prepared to explain all of that away.Then it got personal, we moved on to the “area” and suddenly we are talking babies, and labors, my deep cervix and even my vagina made a cameo appearance in this conversation but I was not prepared for the question she asked next.

Nurse: “So, what about stress incontinence?”

Me: “Pardon me?? I am not familiar with that diagnosis or that term?” (Is this the clinical term for a brain fart?)

My God, I thought, was she asking me if I soil myself when I got stressed out? Was that even a ‘thing”? Was this an actual bonafide medical condition? If it is, I don’t have it.  Have never been diagnosed with it and certainly don’t want it. I mean, there was that one time in college when I had that really bad pneumonia and I coughed so hard that I farted. It was humiliating. How did she know?

She explained, “It’s when you sneeze and there is a release of a small amount of urine.”

Me: “Oh, you mean do I tinkle when I sneeze? Yes, occasionally ( like every single time I sneeze, cough, laugh or move too quickly. It’s like a had a perfectly good urethra and now, my kids broke me. I have a leaky faucet) if I sneeze really hard (thanks to my beautiful big headed babies). Why yes, I do sometimes have to do the peepee dance so I don’t piss on myself at zumba. But it’s not always…just sometimes. Well, like 30% of the time. OK, well, maybe more like 67% of the time. 80% of the time tops.”

Come on, surely I’m not the only Mommy who has had this happen, right? Oh please don’t tell me it’s JUST me. There is no way that I am the only one in Zumba class who is having to sport a Depends. Why else do you think my yoga pants are so lumpy? What, you thought that was cellulite? I cannot believe that I am the only person who is afraid that sneezing, coughing or laughing too hard can cause Mama to water the plants. Don’t tell me you do your Kegel exercises religiously and have the vaginal wall of a 16 year old? If so, I’m not sure we can be friends any longer.

The nurse was really trying to be serious. Next question, “Do you require any treatment for this condition?”

Me: “Oh, you mean other than the peepee dance? Not really, just remembering to practice my Kegels. Maybe I need some gingko, my memory is not what it used to be.”

Nurse: “Any plans for treatment or corrective surgery in the future?”

Me: “No, it’s kind of like being ugly. You just kind of have to learn to live with it!”

At this point, she laughed out loud. And this concluded our interview.

I am a little concerned that I am in a chart somewhere as a grown woman who tinkles on herself (just a little bit and just on occasion…OK, OK, 80% of the time!) but it’s better than what I had originally thought…. One who poops on themselves in stressful situations! Now, that’s a stressful condition. Can you imagine, explosive diarrhea every time you were stressed out?

No amount of Kegels in the world is going to fix that.

And in case you’re still fixating on the whole gerbil incident, God told me to do it…during our conversation, in which I asked what I could do to make him smile. He answered.

Stress incontinence~ Is that a Gerbil in Your Pocket or are You Just Happy to see Me?

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peanut, dads, things kids say

“Mom, Dad’s a boy, he has a peanut!” What you may ask yourself is my 2 year old talking about? Well, lets just say our 2 year old, like all 2 year olds I know,likes to follow us absolutely EVERYWHERE we go. This includes the bathroom, the shower, the closet… you get the picture, there is no hiding anything from this kid. SO, today I just need to take a second and share some of the Gabi-isms that make her so special. I may even make you privy to some of our Bella-isms.

Here are a few from today.
“Mom, Dad’s a boy, he has a peanut!” this was told to me after walking in on Daddy coming out of the shower.

“Momma, GYNE(JI-NEE) Plié!” This was said when I was rinsing her off after her shower. This came about because, if boys have a peanut ; girls have a (JI-NEE)/ the “Plié” comes from the fact that her 4 year old sister takes ballet and she knows what that stance looks like.

“Oh SHit” yes this nugget came from an unfortunate run in with a Fergie song.

“Momma, me Love you!” this is my favorite, except she was saying it to her 4 year old sister, who was playing the role of Mama in their imagination play time.

“Dad….DDDAAAAD….DAAAAADDDEEEEE……………Come wipe me!” Hey, better him that me:)

Those were just a few of the words that flew effortlessly out of her mouth today.

Now, here are few of Bella’s that I have to share.

“Honey, dreams don’t come true…dreams are for sleeping” she says this as she grabs me by the chin,and oh so seriously informs me of the ways of the world, while looking me directly in the eye. I think she was trying to break it to me gently, my little cynic.

“Why do you make my life so miserable,” this was told to me, with all the theatrics of a teenager being told they can’t date, when I told her that she could not wear her dress up tutu to bed.

“Mom, well, its OK..if you die (WTH!) take this (She hands me the keys to her Happy meal diary) and you can come back to me” Wow, I had no idea it was so easy. My bigger concern is why is she not very concerned.

“Its OK if you die Mom,( its a recurring theme. WTH are they teaching her at preschool? LOL) I’ll just go stay with Sarah or Nicole (my friends, the mothers of her friends)! I think I really need to explain what the word “die” means! I think she thinks it means some kind of a night out:)

Well, that was today. I can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings. My girls, revolutionizing my life, 1 moment at a time.

What’s the craziest thing your kid has ever said?

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As I have mentioned, I am the mommy of two super girls. Bella has recently turned four and her baby sister, Gabs, is about to be two. Saying my hands are full is an understatement, to say the very least but I feel that I handle it well, on most days. But despite my best attempts, I can not be everywhere at all times. It is simply an impossibility.This is an issue because, although Bella is a graceful, princess,ballerina, girly girl, Gabs is a tiny hell on wheels full on daredevil. This is not to say she is a tom boy, not that there is anything wrong with that, she is a daredevil clad in puffy skirts and pig tails, which is much worse because when she does all of her crazy reckless tricks, all you see is bloomers and bruised knees.The thing about Gabs is, and I’m not sure if its her daredevil antics or her unusually large toddler, dome of a head ( although it is absolutely beautiful) but something has absolutely altered her center of gravity. Couple her off quilter gravity with her bad luck and sheer clumsiness and she is truly an emergency room visit waiting to happen. Let me just mention a few of the stunts that have landed us in a mad dash to the pediatricians office, in her almost two years; falling off the changing table, tripping over her own feet and busting her head on the bottom of the bed frame ( yes, the bottom..under the mattress), she has fallen into the corner of a coffee table ( the only one in the house without one of those wonderful child protection corner poofs) busting her head wide open.She has fallen into the wall, fallen off the ottoman onto the wood floor and busted her face, fallen face first into the corner of her sisters dresser because she was climbing over the edge of the bed trying to switch the channel on her sisters TV, and many many other spills and falls while scaling the walls of our house. She is like Spider man without the spidey suction power. Now that I list some of her accidents out loud, poor baby really did inherit Mommy’s clumsiness.She is my joy in life and my smile but she scares the hell out of me, on a daily basis. Today, this one was especially classic and true to Gabs form, she was standing at the window watching the birdies. Screaming “Mommy, buurdie”, when all of the sudden a blood curdling scream. I know what you’re thinking,”Oh,God. She fell through the window”. Thank God, no. So ,I get up to go over to her and she turns around..still screaming. And I swear to you, the metal hair clip that was in her hair ( you know the little metal ones that look like an alligator’s mouth) was attached to the corner of her lip. How it got there or why she didn’t take it off, I have no idea and unfortunately, I cannot ask an almost two year old and get a logical or coherent answer, especially not in that state. What I would give to know the answer to that particular mystery of my life. The moral of the story is…NOW, I know why some little kids walk around with helmets on. Next time you see me, I’ll probably be at Target scoping out a pink princess helmet for everyday wear:)

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