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The aftermath of my pregnancy left more than my belly a mess

A few years ago, my sister-in-law was complaining about the weight she still wanted to lose after having her second baby. She was perturbed about the girth around her middle.

I looked with envy at her unblemished bellybutton and her thick, but smooth-skinned midriff.

She was motivated and disciplined about going to the gym and I knew she’d soon be back to her pre-preggo, fit self. I reminded her about how she had lost the weight after her first baby and that she’d undoubtedly do it again. …

When, if not now, will teachers discuss all of the parts of the female anatomy?

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

This article contains content about child sexual abuse and may bring up strong unpleasant thoughts and feelings. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed by these thoughts or feelings, please contact the Rape Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) 24-hour hotline at 1.800.656.HOPE (4673).

I was sipping a hot cup of coffee when I received the text from my 12-year-old daughter, who was up in her room in remote health class. It was a photo she took from her teacher’s PowerPoint presentation — a diagram of the female reproductive system followed by a sarcastic smiley face and thumbs-up emoji. …

Girls are more than sugar and spice, and boys are more than snips and snails

Photo by Kevin Gent on Unsplash

What are little boys made of?
Snips and snails
And puppy-dogs’ tails,
That’s what little boys are made of.

What are little girls made of?
Sugar and spice
And everything nice,
That’s what little girls are made of.
— popular early 20th century nursery rhyme

Before I was a wife and mom, baby showers killed me. Sitting in one room for nearly 5 hours on a weekend didn’t feel like a good use of my time. Having to make small talk with people I (mostly) didn’t know, while feigning joy at the expectant mother as she opened an endless sea…

Photo by @cpuciata, used with permission, https://www.instagram.com/cpuciata/

And just
Like that
I am
Full grown
And the certainty
Of life becomes
Unknown

The news came
So suddenly
And other times
More gradually
When I discovered
No one is free from
Life’s atrocities

Too many
Disorders
And disease
Occupying
Every space
Of this family

Robbing
Father
Of his
Memory
Mother
Of her
Empathy
Sister
Of her
Security
Brother
Of his
Vivacity

Concurrently
The world outside
Unraveling

Humanity
At its worst
Alongside
A worldwide
Catastrophe

Once light
Carefree
I longed for
Time to slow

Now heavy
I hurry
I long for
The time
To go

Tensely
Waiting
Wishing
Praying

Must we always share how much we love our partners on our social media feeds?

Photo by Barefoot Communications on Unsplash

You know the couple. They write beautiful tributes to each other on Facebook. These tributes vary in length and are shared on anniversaries, birthdays, father’s and mother’s day and sometimes, even on a random Tuesday.

I’m not a hater. These tributes can be sweet and sentimental and I can appreciate that my friends are so in love with their spouses. We can definitely use more love and positivity in this world, especially now with all that is going on.

But like all social media, when people’s best lives are the only lives you see and hear about, all day, every…

Image by Karolina Grabowska from Pixabay

Memory
Early morning
Sleep still in my eyes
Curled up in his massive bed
Watching him dress for work
Anxiously waiting as
He begins to knot his tie
Here it comes
Whoosh
Smooth silky fabric
Swipes down my face
I feel
Visible

Memory
Sitting together
On the large soft sofa
In front of the big bay window
My small arms wrapped around his neck
My face buried in his chest
Sweet subtle cologne fills my nose
I feel
Safe

Memory
Big smile on his face
Surprise in the garage
Running to see it
A new car
A station wagon! …

Dr. Thomas Lieb, Towson University

I get it. This whole remote learning thing is beyond frustrating. But what I don’t get is all the shade parents are throwing at teachers. We parents have so much to complain about and it’s mostly over really small things. It’s as if everyone’s forgotten that we are living amidst an unprecedented pandemic, something that none of us — parents, students, teachers — have ever experienced before. After a parent posted the question “What’s wrong with teachers these days?”, it got me thinking about my own elementary school teachers and how much things have changed.

There was Mrs. Corwin. She…

A patriarchal pussy is well-groomed. Perfectly trimmed from every angle — from its top to its sides to its underbelly. It’s childlike. Obedient. Pleasing to others. Hairless. Unnatural. Smooth for a hot minute before it all turns to stubble.

The pussy of a free woman is none of these things. Its hair spills out of her underwear. Wild. Fluffy. Natural. It doesn’t give a damn what you think about it.

When did the taming of our body hair start? When did hair become so despicable? So unsightly?

As a sexually experimenting teenager in the early 90’s, I was less concerned…

Image: friendlystock.com

Back in the day, my friend John and I would stay at the bar until closing, losing ourselves in each other’s playful antics on the dance floor. We often looked ridiculous, but we didn’t care. Years later, I heard John became a cop. When I saw him out at a bar, I excitedly ran over to tackle him (a common greeting among my friends and I) but then stopped dead in my tracks when I noticed it. The alertness in his posture. The stiffness in his stance. His eyes scanning the crowd. The lack of expression in his face. Not…

Image: Thumbs & Ammo

I recently read a great article that gave props to SAHMs. It was interesting because the author is a working mom who now, due to COVID-19, has had to work from home and also do all the things that goes into taking care of 4 kids. She describes how she initially thought this quarantine would be a “nice relaxing break” instead of the harsh, exhausting reality it quickly became. She pays homage to the SAHMs and recognizes how much she underestimated the work they do every dang day. I shared her piece and wrote, “For all the SAHMs! Stay strong!”

Janey Doe

Feminism. Wind Chimes. Arugula. These are a few of my favorite things.

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