Tag Archives: Mothering

Soccer and My Daughter’s Concussion: What’s A Good Mother to Do?

This column first appeared on BlogHer.

At first, I didn’t even realize it had happened. My sixteen-year-old daughter was playing goalie for her premier soccer team at a college scouting tournament during Thanksgiving break this past November. As a player from the other team charged the goal, by daughter went in for the save. They both missed the ball and hit each other head-on. The other player fell down and then got up and brushed herself off. My daughter stumbled but didn’t fall. She then managed to capture the ball and save the goal. The hit was so fast, so seemingly inconsequential, I assumed it was just another mild collision between two competitive players. Little did I realize the concussion my daughter received that day would challenge us both in deep and unexpected ways.

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Spreading Blog Love

Last week, after the publication of my essay on my gay son and his dream  of being a good father, I received an outpouring of support for both me and for him. Theresa from New Jersey wrote, “the tide is changing.” Given the response I received, I think she is right.

One of the best gifts of all was from Dr. Sayer, an adolescent psychologist. She gave me a Liebster Award. No, I’d never heard of it. Before she’d received it, she hadn’t either. Here is what she wrote upon being awarded by Amy of Mom on Purpose:

To accept the Liebster, I have to do 3 things. First, I have to answer 5 questions posed by Amy. Then, I have to nominate 5 blogs I really like for the award, and those 5 blogs should have under 200 followers. Finally, I have to pose 5 questions for my nominees to answer.

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My Gay Son Wants To Know If He’ll Be A Good Father. Here’s My Answer…

This essay originally appeared on BlogHer.

“I’m gonna getcha,” cried my son who had just arrived home from his first fall at college. It was Christmas and our extended family was gathered to celebrate. He, this newly formed man, was on all fours scrambling after his toddler cousin. Our collective laughter spiraled the room as the new-to-walking little boy mimicked Frankenstein in his efforts to get away. My son scooped his cousin up and razzed the baby’s belly creating fits of giggles for them both.

Later, my son asked, “Mom, do you think I’ll be a good father?”

It’s such a seemingly simply question. A boy wants to emulate his role models, he wants to give love as he has been given, he wants to care and guide and support a child as he has been cared for and guided and supported. But for my son, the answer is not quite so simple. You see, my son is gay.
Gay Dads

Image: DPA via ZUMA Press.

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I Am An Emotional Creature

This column originally appeared on Palo Alto Patch.

Eve Ensler Is An Emotional Creature
Source: http://www.VDay.org

At a recent dinner party, a friend shared his frustration and confusion about a young woman who works for him. He told us, “she’s a hard worker” and “she’s  headed for success.” But earlier in the week, as he was giving her constructive feedback about her performance on a project, she suddenly burst into tears. He was totally flummoxed.

“I didn’t know what to do,” my friend complained. As we discussed his options, he finally ended the conversation by saying, “Women are so damn emotional.”

Well friend, yes we are.

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The Answer to Childhood Obesity? Mothers.

This column originally appeared in Palo Alto Patch.

Did you know McDonalds sells 6.5 million cheeseburgers a day?

Childhood obesity is in the news again. The California Center for Public Health Advocacy, in partnership with UCLA, recently released its report: Overweight and Obesity among Children by California City.Turns out 38% of the children in our state are significantly overweight. And that means we’ll be hearing yet again about all the things we should be doing to solve this epidemic.

If we don’t watch out, we may get misguided ideas like the one Daddy Warbuck s Bloomberg is advocating to combating obesity: tax super-sized soft drinks. Seems kind of like shooting fish in a barrel if you ask me, but then again I am not expert on issues of weight, health, and nutrition. Wait, maybe I am. Continue reading

One For All And All For One? Some Thoughts On Mother’s Day

This essay originally appeared in Palo Alto Patch.

My beloveds who remind me why I do love Mother’s Day

Now that we are past the Hallmark part of the holiday, it’s time for some real talk about motherhood in America. Sure, I love that my three kids still make me breakfast in bed and give me cards that express their undying devotion (until, of course, I tell them they can’t take the car or stay out past their curfew). But let me tell you a few things I don’t love: Continue reading

We Are Women. Hear Us Roar. Again.

This article originally appeared in the May 2012 issue of Diablo Magazine.

Kriste Michelini and Children (Photo courtesy of Diablo Magazine)

It’s 7:30 on a Thursday evening, and 10 moms are gathered at Kriste Michelini’s interior design studio in Danville, drinking wine and eating off a veggie platter artfully arranged by Michelini. This isn’t a book group or PTA fundraiser. These mothers are busy trying to help Bridget Scott finalize the details of her business plan. She’s preparing to open her own chiropractic office, a lifelong dream, but is still determining the best way to incorporate the hours while placing family first. Scott wants to work while her children are in school and is confident she can find clients who will fit her schedule. But issues around finalizing a name and staff management are what she needs advice on. The other women, all business owners themselves, readily offer it.

Scott started Business Owner Moms (BOMS) in 2008 because she wanted to gather like-minded working mothers to offer each other support and guidance as they struggled to balance their professional ambitions with their personal lives. BOMS includes women such as Alamo’s Kristin Kiltz, a mother of three who quit her high-powered job at a public relations firm to set up her own PR consulting business; and Danville’s Julie Ligon, also a mother of three, who left her exciting marketing position at Gap to open one of the first franchise studios of the Dailey Method. The BOMS could have given up work completely to stay home with their children, but haven’t. Continue reading

Sometimes It’s Hard To Love Mother Earth

This column originally appeared on Palo Alto Patch.

Love Your Mother (Earth)

I must have been seven, maybe eight, when I first saw that now ubiquitous bumper sticker. We were idling at a stop light in our huge beige station wagon with its ultra powerful V8 engine. In front of us was a well travelled VW bus with a singular message on its backside. The words were written in soft but commanding script and at the end of the letters was a blue and green orb. The bumper sticker said, “Love Your Mother.” It felt like a message from God.

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Our Mothers, Ourselves

This essay originally appeared on BlogHer.

Isolette, preemies

Our Babies, Ourselves

Eighteen years ago this month, my first child arrived six weeks ahead of schedule. While he was hooked up to tubes and toasting away in the ICU’s isolette, I spent those first days as a mother praying for him and reading Annie Lamott’s memoir, Operating Instructions. Between the laughter and the tears, I was hoping to find that elusive “how-to” manual for mothering.

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Shouldn’t Our Children Have the Right To Clean Air?

This essay originally appeared on BlogHer.

Did you know we take between 18,000 and 28,000 breaths a day? That’s a lot of in/out/in/out. And yet it’s something we rarely think about. It’s so natural, so essential, it doesn’t require us to think — until we have to. Continue reading