The response to my essay in the Sunday New York Times has been astonishing. The biggest learning is that we all crave a more nuanced approach to how women (and men) integrate their work and family obligations.
We were all strangers that spring of 1996. Our only connection was that we had all recently given birth at Stanford Hospital in Palo Alto, Calif., and, as recommended by our doctors, had signed up for the New Mother training class. Once a week, we sat in a circle sharing our concerns as a nurse educator led the discussion. It was like those consciousness-raising sessions from the 1960s. But, unlike our mothers who had gathered to secure their place in the world, we gathered to figure out how to be mothers in spite of it.
Read the full essay here.
Posted in 2014
Tagged Failure, Family, Feminism, Love, Making Change, Marriage, Men, Mid-Life, Mothering, Palo Alto, Parenting, Personal Development
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.
This article was modified for a feature in Diablo Magazine. Given the current (and yet ongoing) discussion regarding women’s choices and the future of feminism, I thought I’d post the full article here.
It had been a busy week for Katrina Alcorn of Oakland. She’d worked late to meet a client’s deadline, she’d missed putting her three children to bed one night too many, and now she was racing off to Target to buy diapers. Afterwards, she’d go home to her husband and together they would clean the house, do the laundry, get dinner ready, put the kids to sleep, and then they would each spend the rest of the evening responding to work emails before falling into bed, exhausted. Suddenly, Katrina realized it was all too much. She pulled the car over to the side of the road, called her husband and said, “I just can’t do it anymore. I have to quit.” Continue reading
This essay originally appeared in Palo Alto Patch.
I don’t know where I lost it. Perhaps on the train between Verona and Florence. Or at the restaurant overlooking the hills of Tuscany. It might have been at the nightmare-inducing Torture Museum in San Gigmignano. But it didn’t matter where it was, because now that my cell phone was gone, the rest of my trip to Italy would be about this unplanned and unwanted digital diet.
This essay originally appeared on BlogHer.
My Dad, the Breast Cancer Survivor
In 1978, a few weeks after Christmas, my father had a radical mastectomy. The last words he said to me before the surgery were, “they can take my nipple but I’ll be damned if I’m going to let them take my ovaries.” So like my father to lighten the mood with a joke but, of course, cancer is no laughing matter. Continue reading
“We change, we grow, we are inspired when we feel” – Shamim Sariff
The essay originally appeared in Palo Alto Patch.
When I was five, we traveled back to my mother’s home country of Norway to visit family. While there, we joined the nation in celebrating its National Day, an annual tradition marked by parades and speeches. I remember ticker tape falling like snow as I watched from the window of my grandfather’s office building. But it was the sea of red, white, and blue flags dancing in the breeze on that cool May day, hundreds of them held high by parade participants and viewers alike, that I remember most of all. Continue reading