Does he notice?

Does he notice that I fold his towels in a sweet way? That I use natural laundry soap and make him take his vitamins and pay up for the all-natural body wash to keep him healthy and away from crummy chemicals? Does he notice that I sneak glances at his 15-year-old self, trying to drink…

Hurricanes and gentle breezes

My eldest son blew through me like a hurricane for nine long months, intent on getting to his final destination—which was, namely, anywhere outside of my body. Not one to be easily confined, he clued me in early to his preferences. Sick for roughly eight of those nine months, I wondered what had overcome me….

Raising a warrior

My hair stylist is a tough man of few words. But he has opened up as he has gotten to know me. Today, he is a chatterbox. I have just introduced him to the enneagram when this tatted up, ponytailed tough guy tells me he is certain he would be some sort of warrior type….

A barn burner

We absorb what our parents show us, deep in our cells, unknowingly. Even as we fight, as teens, to be anything but them, their love seeps into our bones—the very marrow–changing us. Some of those changes appear as is, others are stored for future us, tempered in our cells with time. It must be hard…

A shout-out from the Queen of Onomatopoeia

Slam. Stomp, stomp, stomp. Clap clap. “Hellooooo all!” And I make my entrance. That’s a lot of hullaballoo for an entrance into my own family room, right? But we’ve entered the teenaged years. The teenaged-with–girlfriend years. Oy. I find myself going up and down my stairs enough for it to qualify as aerobic activity. As…

Scenes from the car

As my foot pushes an imaginary pedal on the passenger side of my one and only not-yet-fully-paid-for car, I yell, “Brake, brake, brake!” “Mom, it scares me when you do that.” “Really, son? Because it scares me when there are brake lights ahead of us at 100 feet, then 50 feet, then 10 feet and…

Hoodies as nemesis

The bathroom door is shut yet again. My God, it is happening. Puberty looms. Not for me, of course. I survived that wild wasteland many decades ago. But for my youngest. I remember clearly the same with his older brother. About midway through that eleventh year, the earth started to shift under my feet. And…

Bad-ass mothering

“That truck is carrying some bad-ass chemicals,” announced my son on the way to school this morning. “How do you know that?” I asked. “The rating on the side of the truck, Mom. It’s an eight. That’s a highly acidic substance.” “And how do you know THAT?” I asked. “We covered acidity/alkalinity in a science…

Yo, alien boy. What have you done with my son?

Like any good mother, I know my son. I can usually predict, with about 80 percent accuracy, his next move. And like any good mother, I want him to best me. Despite our seemingly enlightened posturing (and if we’re posturing, wherein lies the enlightenment?), we want our kids to have better than we did. Do…

Late-night musings of a mom

Where do these babies of ours come from? A question I’m sure I asked my parents at some point. A question I’ve answered when my kids have asked. But I’m not looking for the easy biological answer here. I’m looking for the up-at-midnight, tearing-my-hair-out, how-did-we-create-this-being answer. I love my children. Dearly. They are old souls…

Mortification by Mama

I. Am. Embarrassing. Or so I’m told by my oldest. Embarrassing with a capital E. Maybe with a few exclamation points thrown in. In fact, I do not even have to work at this quality. It comes effortlessly to me. My very breathing is embarrassing. And, being a bit of a contrarian, I find that…