PSA: That is a Shirt, Not a Dress.

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Ok, this is my random thought for the week.  This has to be said, much like four or five years ago when we all had to band together as a gender and decide that “tights are not leggings” ( nice thong!) and “leggings are not pants”.  The 2015 version of this is “that shirtdress is a shirt, not a dress”.   Someone brought this up to me the other day when witnessing an otherwise pulled together woman strutting around in public in not only an insanely short shirtdress, but also a sheer one and was BAFFLED. I think I can safely say that  no woman ever wants a man to look at her and have his first thought be “Oh my God, she forgot to put her pants on this morning! Poor woman!”

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On Waiting.

collection of vintage alarm clocks

One of my friends sent me this article yesterday and I’ve read it twice since.  I urge you to read it, it’s so superbly done. For many reasons this story resonates with me and is something I’ve wanted to discuss for a while since finding out I was pregnant… waiting until later in life to have children.

While I have struggled with infertility, I’ve struggled even more with the decision to get pregnant in the first place.  I discussed this feeling in my book a little, but wanted to go a little deeper into it here.  As long as I can remember, I never felt a strong urge to be a mother. Even as my friends began lamenting how much they desired babies, I didn’t feel the primal urge- the deep hunger for offspring- in my bones.  When I was around little kids and babies, instead of feeling like my ovaries might explode from desire, I instead felt a little more like ” Man, I’m glad I get to leave here by myself”.  Like the author of the above article, I cherish my alone time.   As you know, I too struggle with anxiety, and am by all accounts an introvert.  Once I get out and around people I enjoy myself, but choosing to go be social is the hard part for me. I’d much rather stay home and watch Netflix with Andrew than go to a party.  Cancelled plans are my drug of choice.

At the same time as all my peers where having babies, I was birthing a career.  Right when I “should” have been having kids at 32, I was busy signing my first book deal and frantically working to keep up with demand of this blog and my long client list. I loved it, it was everything I had hoped for and more and didn’t feel like anything was missing.  Not only did I not have room in my life for a kid, I didn’t want to make the room.  But I felt this societal pressure to WANT to have kids, and I am an easy victim of peer pressure and bucking to what the media deems I should want. So we pulled the goalie, per say, and kind of half-heartedly tried to get pregnant for a year.  Knowing now what I know about conception, our “trying” was total bullshit. All those years we spent worried about accidentally pregnant, and it turns out you have like, a 48 hour window to get pregnant. And with both our travel schedules alone, this made it impossible half the months of that year.  I was never worried about it though because I was still so ambivalent about the whole thing.  Every month I would be “sad”  externally about not conceiving, when really inside I felt a rush of relief.

And then I turned 34 and started thinking, well, what if something is wrong with me? I had heard grumblings about damaging my fertility from doctors when I was being treated for anorexia in my teens, and the fear started to creep in that they were right. What if I couldn’t get pregnant naturally? What if this took five years?  I love to comply to a schedule, and so far everything had happened as it should: married at 26, first home purchased at 26, career solidly in place by 30…so the baby thing was started to fall way off schedule, and that stressed me out. So we went to see a fertility doctor who told us basically, there was no reason I wasn’t getting pregnant medically, but to speed things up since I was “older”, we should try IUI.

My Catalog Life.

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This is SUPER random, but you know when a really well curated catalog shows up in your mailbox and the pictures in it make you question your life choices? Am I the only one here?  The other day I got this random catalog, Guideboat, and as I sat in my sunroom looking at it with my “their life looks awesome” goggles on, I had a thought.  One that proclaimed “We really should canoe more.” I balked at myself- WHAT? Canoe? And then my thought process tumbled down a rabbit hole a little something like this…

On Childhood.

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Dorothy Hammill had nothin’ on me.

Last week I saw this parenting article by Jen Hatmaker all over Facebook and decided to read it despite not being a parent to humans.  And I’m glad I did, as I thought it was genius.  Again, I don’t have kids (but I hope to) so you can take my biased opinion with a grain of salt, but I totally agree with her that parenting today seems to have gotten a little …crazy.  Perhaps it’s why I was so ambivalent about joining the ranks for so long- it just doesn’t seem the same today as it was during my own childhood. Now bear with me on this long winded Tuesday morning ramble….

Just looking on Pinterest alone makes me stressed out about having kids, with everyone’s intense daily craft projects, chore charts, rules, tips and dissections.  I see young moms having to go through these intense pre-school applications while fretting that if their child’s macaroni necklace skills aren’t up to par, Harvard will be off the table.  I don’t recall ever worrying about college until I was in high school never mind while barely having a grasp on the English language!

The Beauty of Aging.

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This week I went to the dermatologist for my annual skin cancer check (you all should as well) and when the doctor walked in she asked how I was feeling about my skin these days. “Older” I said, with a nervous laugh.

“Well, you are an excellent candidate for filler!  Slim women lose fat in their face first and it really would help contribute to a more youthful look.”

Well, shit.

I’ll admit that the wind was knocked out of my sails a little. I guess at 35, and with a history of rampant sun-bathing (again, skin cancer checks, people), I shouldn’t have been surprised to hear that little tidbit of advice.  When I look in the mirror in the morning I see the lines around my mouth getting deeper and the angry crease that has appeared between my eyebrows,  little scars courtesy of Father Time and my penchant for animated facial expressions. But should I be feeling “old”? Especially at 35? (I can hear my mom chiming in now- “Just wait until your 60, sweetie!”)