You Don’t Have to Be Miserable to Make a Different Choice

Do you ever find yourself wishing for misfortune to befall you so that you will be forced to do what you want to do but feel that you can’t do for one reason or another? Please tell me I’m not the only one. For example, do you ever… -Wish you would lose your job and be unable to find another one, so that you would be forced to pursue your dream of becoming a famous actor/writer/comedian/entrepreneur? -Wish you would find out your partner was cheating on you so you’d have an excuse to leave them? -Wish you would survive a terrible car accident and require months of rehab so you would be forced to drop out of school/quit your job/spend more time with family/focus on what is most important to you? -Wish you would find out your house/apartment has black mold/was a meth house so you would be forced to move? We want life to force us to make the decisions we want to make, to force us to take the action we want to take. I realized I was doing this when I found…

How I Go 90% With Cloth Diapering

Cloth diapering is not easier than using disposables. It is, in fact, more work. Just let that sink in for a moment. Or, if you’re already a cloth-diapering parent you’re like, “obviously, bro.” So, why would anyone choose to cloth diaper? There are two main reasons: 1.) It is so. much. cheaper.  2.) Save the planet! Side benefits include: they are usually more gentle on baby bums, babies/toddlers will understand that peeing=wetness which helps immensely with potty training (so I’ve heard, haven’t crossed that bridge yet), and of course, that priceless smugness that only comes from making unpleasant sacrifices for the good of the planet. Cloth diapering is really not a big deal for our family, and is just part of our routine. Here’s is what we do and how: We have 18 cloth diapers and 3 wet bags for Warrior Girl. (You really only need 12-14). 11 of the diapers are All-In-One cloth diapers similar to these, and 7 are Fuzzi Bunz pocket diapers. Here is a great article clarifying the differences in the various types of cloth diapers. Every other…

Affirmations for People with a Savior Complex

Our beliefs about ourselves, others, and the world shape our behaviors on the daily. And that is why I love affirmations–choosing intentionally what I want to believe. Whenever I realize I want/need to change my mind about something, I write affirmations to say to myself to help restructure my ways of thinking. It’s pretty much non-invasive brain surgery. Of course, many times affirmations are not enough to rewire a lifetime of experience and thinking, but they are a useful tool nonetheless. I realized something rather unfortunate recently: I have a bit of a savior complex. AKA, some hidden belief that others need me in order to function. This is probably pretty common for people in helping professions. This is also known as needing to be needed, codependency, and hero syndrome. It’s essentially just a bit too much of a good thing. It’s when wanting to help others is tinged by a belief that we are smarter/more competent/more capable or worse than others, and we seek to feel important, needed, and loved through helping and serving. It becomes about us. And it can quickly turn toxic in relationships. A…

The Good News About Infant Attachment

The topic of infant attachment comes up a lot in sleep training, feeding and parenting style in general. Attachment is important, of course. The bonds we form in infancy and childhood impact the “relationship blueprint” we carry for the rest of our lives (although even a damaged relationship blueprint can be repaired with intervention). But sometimes it can be really stressful for moms. All the information leads many moms to experience guilt if they are not able to live up to ideals they think they must meet. Luckily, forming secure attachments with our children is far less complicated than a quick and confusing Google search would lead you to believe. …. This post was published as a guest post on Mother.ly. Click here for the full article! Did you get confused/worried about forming a secure attachment with your child? Share your journey in the comments below…

My Best Advice for Dealing with “Askholes”

Askholes: they invoke fury in the tender-hearted, and rancor in the benevolent. Fortunately, I have a solution/advice for dealing with askholes once and for all: Stop giving people advice. They probably don’t really want it. (Admittedly, there are exceptions to this. Like when your friend calls and says, “How do I assemble this Ikea bookshelf?” or asks you to advise them on the best chocolate chip cookie recipe.  Then, they probably really do want you to tell them what to do.) But when they ask what they should do about their career change/their cheating partner/their child’s addiction/their depression/breastfeeding/sleep training/etc, they probably do not want advice. (Or in some cases, they really do want your advice, but after they’ve heard ideas from a number of sources, they want to make their own decision like the free-will toting humans they are.) Yes, yes, I know… they specifically asked us for our wisdom, our insight, our brilliant step-by-step instructions. Or at least implied that they would otherwise benefit from said wisdom. However, the issue here is people often don’t ask for…

Speaking of Mindfulness…

Speaking of mindfulness, I just got out of the shower and discovered I had only shaved one leg. And I have two. Legs, that is. On an unrelated note, also speaking of mindfulness, I opted to eat 5 mini-snickers after a pretty heavy therapy session the other day. But! I knew I was emotionally eating while I emotionally ate. Hence, mindfulness. Today, I also opted to be aware I was emotionally eating while I emotionally ate a large quantity of Lays and french onion dip. Then I demanded to my husband that he should let me unilaterally name our baby this amazing name I made up, which he thinks sounds like a brand of eye drops, and while we’re at it, he should also let me decorate our apartment exactly the way I want it with no input from him. As I said it, I knew I was being ridiculous. So yes, I was being pretty mindful. He laughed, which is the only kind response when your wife is getting a bit nutty and approaching the third trimester of pregnancy (are those two things related?). It’s so great to be a self-aware wreck. On…

Living Gracefully With Regret

“No regrets.” It’s a phrase I will probably never understand. All I think when I see a meme like this:   this, or this is….seriously? For real, bro? There’s nothing in your past you wish you could change? On the one hand, there is the whole, “I ate 3 more tacos after I was full… no regrets” kind of no regrets. You know, or the “I danced ‘The Macarena’ in front of my entire office…no regrets” kind of no regrets. But what about times we have just plain screwed up? When I hear these inspirational quotes about how you should have no regrets, because your choices have made you who you are today, and mistakes are just lessons learned, I am left thinking, “yeah, but what about the impact our choices have on other people?”  Yes, the other humans who inhabit this planet. We don’t live in a vacuum; our choices have consequences for us and for other people as well. If I could go back and change the ways I have hurt people, I would do it in…

Minimalist/Frugal List of Literally Everything You Need for a Newborn AND an Announcement(!)

To make this list, I literally took inventory of everything I had for Warrior Girl and am including everything I found necessary and worth buying/having. I have included frugal alternatives to things the Baby Industrial Complex says you need and discussed ways to get by without a number of “essentials…

When the Only Way Out Is Through

When I was nearing time to give birth to Warrior Girl, they were going to induce me because labor hadn’t started some 12 hours after my water broke. Consequently, they had me lying in the bed hooked up to a fetal monitor. Nurses kept coming in to adjust things and check me, looking rushed and somewhat concerned. I hated it. I wasn’t even technically in labor, but I felt every little cramp and pain lying in that bed. Fortunately, I went into labor literally moments before they were about to induce me. Once they determined I didn’t have to be induced, I was out of bed like a rocket, power walking the halls like “I’m in labor ya’ll!”  Some hours later, I was in the bathtub feeling calm and serene when I suddenly vomited multiple times in a row and felt overwhelmed with an energy that tore through me and made me feel like I was climbing the walls. It occurred to me, this is transition. This is when people who weren’t planning to get an epidural ask for one.  But the thought of lying on…

Paradigm-Shattering Experiences: Mind=Blown

(Image Credit llreadll) One time, my friend had what I like to call “a moment of clarity.” That is, a moment of awakening, a moment in which she was at peace, a moment in which her thinking mind had stopped trying to figure out ALL THE THINGS, and paradoxically, it all made sense. How do I know this? Because for about 60 seconds, she had a look of wonder on her face. And then panic. Then she said something to the effect of, “But how do you hold on to this?” Which is nothing but the hallmark of a fleeting experience of awakening. And it’s frequently those very words, thought or verbalized, which bring it to an end. I could never forget being there when this happened for my friend. My friend, on the other hand, had completely forgotten about it two years later. How could that be? I like to think of our minds as containing a vast maze of filing cabinets. All incoming data is processed through the dependable-yet-conventional filing lady, Mildred. Mildred always wears sensible shoes. She is very kindly, and she isn’t taking any chances with our well-being. She does…