Sep 022014
 

Originally published August 14, 2013

You guys.

I just dropped off all three of my children for their first day of school.

The littlest one started kindergarten today, which means that for the first time in eleven years, they will all spend five full days at school. Without me. My house is empty.

The dogs are running from room to room, looking for their best friends. My bedroom is so quiet that as I type right now, I can actually hear the dishwasher running in the kitchen. I’m looking down the barrel of an eight-hour day with no more babies to juggle, no nap times or play dates to schedule, no snuggling dirty little necks after lunch. No PB and Js to make. No band aids or popsicles to pass out.

I don’t consider myself a particularly nostalgic mama, and so I was surprised at the rush of emotions I experienced upon leaving the school this morning. It was a little embarrassing, to tell you the truth. Because though I tried to be stoic, I just couldn’t keep it in. Before I could make it to the van, ten years of built-up mama emotion spilled out onto that school sidewalk.

 

BA- BAM!

HELLS TO THE YEAH!!!!!

DON’T CRY FOR ME, ARGENTINA!!!!!!

I’ve always loved the “It Gets Better” campaign that some wise, gentle souls created to encourage gay youth. I think we should steal it to encourage parents of babies and toddlers.

LOOK AT ME, MAMAS OF TODDLERS. IT GETS BETTER!!!!!

Listen, there is JOY TO BE FOUND in snuggle time and there is joy to be found in alone time. There is a time for it all. And the way we survive this parenting roller coaster of emotions is to find the joy in each new phase. EMBRACE THE NOW!

I GOTTA GO! I’m off to stand in my living room NOT WAITING FOR ANYONE TO ASK ME FOR SNACKS!!!!!!

So much love and peace and quiet and JOY TO THE WORLD. 

Love,
G

P.S. My mom just emailed me this: “Send first day of school pictures!” I sent the pictures above. She wrote back: “OF THE KIDS.”

Oh. Crap. I said. Forgot. But to be fair, this is kind of my day. So, you know. Back off a little.  

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Carry On, Warrior
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
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Aug 282014
 

Originally published June 8th

 From My Inbox This Morning:

Dear G,

I do not feel beautiful. Everything about your work makes me feel understood and less alone- except for your appearance. Do you wake up looking like that?

Dear M,

Yes. Yes, I do. I am so sorry to tell you that natural beauty has always been my cross to bear. Below are two pictures for your examination. One is my headshot- which was taken after two hours of “hair and make-up,” thirty minutes of arranging perfect lighting, and what I can only imagine was forty nine hours of photo-shop. The other picture was taken this morning, right after I opened your email. Since the extremely subtle and nuanced differences between the photos are certain to make it quite difficult for you to determine which is which, I will tell you that the one on the LEFT is from this morning.

For now- the armor I wear comes in the form of cosmetic bottles from a department store. Since the armor I used to wear came in the form of vodka bottles from the ABC store- I call this progress. One day, the only armor I’ll need between me and the world will be a cup of tea and a smile.  That day is not today, but it’s coming. I’m extremely patient with myself, so I can wait.

And even so…EVEN THOUGH I wake up looking like that first picture everyday- I would insist to you that I AM  beautiful and I’m becoming more beautiful every day. Beautiful means “full of beauty.” Since I am almost forty now – God, I love saying that – I finally know what beauty is. To me, beauty is the beach near my house, puttering around my kitchen, the laughter of a good friend, my dogs’ stinky fur, Amma’s inability to say the letter R, Tish’s sensitive heart, Chase’s darkening summer skin against his ultra white teeth, Craig playing hide and seek by himself, the steeple of my beloved church, a hot chai tea, and the banyan trees in my front yard. Today I will FILL UP WITH THIS BEAUTY. I will SEE this beauty and really NOTICE IT and smell it and hear it and roll around in it and soak it all up. I will allow all of this beauty to become a part of me- to BECOME ME-  and by the end of the day I will be so freaking beautiful from the inside out that folks will stop and stare, probably.

If you do not feel beautiful then FILL UP, Precious Sister.

And if that doesn’t work, I‘ll send over hair and make-up. Freaking magicians.

One more thing, friend. Just in case you’re too tired to search for your own beauty today-  you can borrow some of mine. This is our banyan tree holding our Amma. She’s on her wope swing, having a weally wonderful time.

amma swing

Cawwy On, Wawwiow.

G

P.S. Here’s the beauty routine I taught my eight year old daughter. FOOLPROOF.



Carry On, Warrior
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
Join the Momastery on-line community on Facebook, Twitter & Pinterest


Aug 272014
 

It seems to me that those who aren’t brokenhearted are not paying close enough attention. And that freedom is “losing it all” and discovering that the only thing you ever needed cannot be lost.

Here’s a five-minute interview I did with #OWNShow about how Rock Bottom is the most beautiful place to begin. Many more segments with #OWN and Momastery to come!



Carry On, Warrior
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
Join the Momastery on-line community on Facebook, Twitter & Pinterest