The words I choose

I wrote a blog post about the word Pretty, how I felt about it, how I felt about constantly telling my daughter that she was pretty or things she wore were pretty.

My husband and I disagreed, he wants to be able to tell her she is pretty on occasion and maybe he should? Maybe this will build self esteem? I am not sure I know what I am doing here.

However, that made me realize, how often do I tell her other things. How often do I tell her she is smart, she is brave, she is courageous, she is nimble, she is strong.

I realized that even though I want her to know these things, I am not saying them out loud. I am not re-inforcing these ideas. Why not?

I tell her she is adorable, I tell her she is my baby, I tell her she is cute. I know she absorbs this because she goes baby when I have that look on her face, she knows I am about to say ohh my baby and give her a tight hug. I know she absorbs this because she sees the look on my face and asks stop? Yes you should stop you know you arent supposed to play with that.

So why dont I? I am about to start reading a book called the Feminist’s guide to raising a princess. She loves girly things and I want her to know she is more than that should she choose to be. But Why am I not using it as words?

For 2018 I pledge to consciously re-inforce this through my actions and words because she is brave and fearless when she climbs on to the monkey bars in class or demonstrates a new gymnastics move with the teacher for the other kids (including boys). She is strong when she gets back up again after a fall and goes right back to running. She is fearless when the idea of climbing over something doesnt scare her. She is smart when she finds ways to go around me to do what she wants. She marches to her own tune, she dances to her own moves and if I want her to know just how amazing she is. Maybe I ought to tell her more.



I have been wondering for over a year how this fake news phenomenon happened. How did so many people fall for so many things that were fake. I mean as a nation we should know better right?

Today I was irritated about something for the umpteenth time and declared that my in laws are the fake news family (in my head of course).  It hit me, this is how an entire nation succumbed to fake news.

If it is on the Internet it must be right. If 5 websites are saying it, it must be right. Why? When did we simply start believing something because someone was saying it?

Now I am the horrible daughter in law who lives to contradict everything they say.

Chickpeas have Gluten – Me: No No They really dont

Whole Wheat Flour and All Purpose Flour come from different grains – Me: No No They really dont.

Whole Wheat Flour is Gluten Free – Me: No No it really isnt.

Gluten is the devil – Me: No No it really isnt. Also if you can digest whole wheat flour but not all purpose flour then Gluten isnt your problem.

The one thing that irked me however was the declaration. Lemons Can Prevent Cancer. I wanted to scream from rooftops, NO NO IT DOESNT.

Let me give you some background, his family has never faced cancer. No one in my in laws immediate family has battled or succumbed that disease. My Family, we had lots of brushes with cancer. Cancer in the Intestines Yep, Renal Cell Carcinoma Yep, Breast Cancer Yeah Sure why not, Leukemia -YES Join the party. We have lost near and dear ones to this battle time and again. So YES it pisses me off when you say that they could add a lemon wedge to their water and they would have lived. I dont want to digress though.

Lemons dont cure cancer. My husband says he found it on the internet to support his dad’s theory. I ask, show me, was it a reputable website? Is there any science to support this? None that I could find satisfactorily. Yes I looked, because I will forever want to verify everything (Another reason my in laws refer to me as the Googler, because I prefer to verify my information).

Raisins Dont Cause Nosebleeds

We could go on and on about how Raisins dont cause nosebleeds, there is no science to support this. Yes I shouldnt just dismiss old wives tale outright I mean Turmeric does have some value (its sold in costco now, so I shouldnt have mocked all those years my grandma told me as a child that it had medicinal value). Specifically though, Raisins didnt cause my child’s nosebleed. We didnt stop there though to appease them and mantain my sanity, I stopped her Raisins for the duration of their stay. She ate them once on a long drive because I ran out of snacks and she ate corn that day. Her colitis acted up, she had blood in her stool the next day. It was the RAISINS they declared with the look in their eye that said I am a horrible mom. It was the corn I said calmly. It was the Raisins they believed.

Our egos contribute to this issue. We read it on the internet so it cannot possibly be fake. We believed it, we discussed it, we spread it around so it cannot possibly be fake. You are simply trying to diminish my intelligence therefore you are fake. I am not old, I am not outdated, I am on the internet, I am relevant.

Meanwhile, I see science becoming just slightly more obscure and irrelevant. Meanwhile, I see the truth and facts becoming just slightly more irrelevant even in my own home. How did we get here? How did we get here as a family and how did we get here as a nation or a world where facts stopped being facts, where truth isnt absolute and Fake News RULE!


Oh so pretty

I remember when my daughter first said “pretty”. I was thrilled, surprised and a little confused. She was about 28 months, it was Thanksgiving, my in laws were in town. Background: she has a mild speech delay so I hang on every word she utters and my in laws hate my existence.

I was thrilled because she spoke a newword, she called me pretty. I was wearing this flamboyant monstrosity of so many colors and patterns. It is so not my style, I wear my solids in shades of black, gray, blue. You know the colors that help me blend into background and leave little chance for a glaring fashion blunder. I digress, I was wearing a dress and she looked at me and said pretty.

I was confused at the time because I didn’t know where she encountered the word. I call her adorable, I call her cute but I have never called he pretty and until that day neither had my husband. And no she didn’t hear him tell me I was pretty either. I m quite sure of that.

Turns out, my in laws were teaching her the word pretty. She was pretty, objects were pretty, dresses were pretty. They were also using “good girl” as a means of reinforcement.

Both those things make my blood boil. Why did they never consider stopping to tell her she is brave, she is smart, she is strong, she is courageous. Why pretty?
I know my husband doesn’t think it’s a big deal. She will hardly remember he says. So what, I want her to know she is pretty. I only imagine banging my head on the walk through this entire conversation.
Isn’t this how it begins? We teach a toddler girl she is pretty. We teach her to be dainty and delicate. We teach her all the things she cannot be. Isn’t this where her confidence slowly hinges on depending on being pretty? On hearing it from other people that she is? What happens if tomorrow these same people stop telling her that?
I know what happens. I grew up with very little self esteem. I grew up with 0 confidence in myself or my looks. I know how it impaired my life, my judgement, my decisions.

Maybe it’s just a word, maybe it doesn’t mean more and it’s in my head. Maybe my clomid have is making me angrier than usual. Maybe just maybe I can change the outcome of this story..

An ode

Note: I wrote this entire post a few days ago and thought it was published. It was neither published nor saved under drafts so I am a bit frustrated. Will try to recreate all my thoughts.

A few days ago, someone had a conversation that sparked a memory of a few months ago when I was talking to my husband. He asked me if I would really call my Twitter buds my friends? (we are both introverts, we dont let people into our lives easily, we dont make friends easily).

I was surprised at this thought and said, “Well yeah, if they arent my friends then I dont know who I would call friends.”

A few days ago, I also sat in the RE’s office waiting anxiously and being a little envious of those people whose partners make it to even blood tests. We had crazy schedules, and he couldnt make it to a lot of appointments last time around and this time he is watching A. I told him its okay, but I wondered at the time, did I really get through this all alone?

No I didnt, you know why? Because my friends (yep those ones from twitter) are always a text or a tweet away in my pocket.

This community embraced me after my third miscarriage, they picked me up when I was at my lowest. They endured my crazy rants and hormonal ups and downs when I was on clomid. They helped answer my questions when I was confused about test results. They reminded me that it only takes one when I was upset about the follicles not maturing on my last clomid cycle (sounds like a cliche but it did only take one, that was the cycle that gave me A).

It didnt stop there, they were there when I bled at 13w pregnant. Guess who played Cards with humanity on my phone to distract me from a terrible appointment making me nauseous? Yep you guessed it, it was them. They held my hand through pregnancy, and they stayed for the terrible anxiety and sleep deprived haze that followed. They were there when I struggled with A’s colitis, development delays, mischief that led to a bloody nose.

They are still there at the end of every day when I am tired and want to scream at the world.

They are still there every morning when I wake up and look for the courage to declare battle (Lets face it, each day is a battle. You battle yourself, your child and the world all while trying to keep a spotless home and the delicious smell of dinner wafting frm the kitchen – Yeah most of that never happens).

They have known me at my worst in recent years, and they are still there.

They have brought out the best in me, and they are still there.

They encourage me to grow, they hold my hand (or text and tweet) as I step outside of my comfort zone.

They remind me of the parent I want to be, and they remind me it is okay when I fail to be that parent.

They are Team Whatever Works.

How could they be anything less than a friend for me?

I havent met most of them but I know for me they are my tribe. The good thing about having a tribe is that when the days are long and weary, there is always someone who can send a hug your way or listen to your diatribe. You try to return the favor when you can but they understand on days when you cant, and even join you in your blanket fort.

This isnt quite what I wrote the first time around, but the sentiment still stands. I am grateful for them and I am so glad that I found them.


Dusting off cobwebs

I havent written/blogged in a long time. It has been really difficult for some reason to write coherent blogs lately. Initially it was because infertility is such an emotional subject, I couldnt really write without tears and being overwhelmed. Parenting came with sleep deprivation and self doubts, airing those doubts, those mistakes while brave was also very difficult for me.

I am trying again, I am dusting off cobwebs and trying to blog coherent thoughts again. I understand that to tell a story that makes sense, I first need to start small and have thoughts that make sense again.

People often ask or did anyway  about my weird username on twitter, its misstomrstomom. When I first created my twitter account in 2012 or 2013, I was trying desperately to find a place that was mine. I was trying to find myself again. I was lost after 2 miscarriages, I was confused and shattered.

I have always struggled with self confidence, self esteem and self care all my life. There are years where I am really good at it or faking it, and there are years where well I am not. Between marriage (my in laws are very different than my own family, very formal, very rigid and that was an adjustment in itself) and compromises (the one thing I hold against my grandma who I loved dearly was her abhorrent advice to keep giving up things as compromise in a marriage and someday it will all work out) then infertility and miscarriages, I was bruised, battered and barely recognized myself in the mirror.

That is what my screen name represented to me at the time (slightly cheesy I know) – the attempt to find myself through the life changes of getting married and trying to be a mom.

It is really long though and I tried so hard over the last few weeks to think of a way to shorten it but I cant.

Maybe as I dust off the cobwebs in my head, maybe as I learn to think again through the chaos, the noise and (now the whine of my toddler who I love so dearly and am so grateful for) I can write shorter sentences again. Maybe with practice, I can stop thinking in runon fragments and learn to “focus” again.

It is going to be slightly painful(for my readers probably) and I will write here more for myself then anyone else, but here I am trying to dust off the cobwebs. Wish me luck!!

I wasnt enough

I have felt a myriad of emotions since Tuesday night. That sinking abysmal feeling as results kept pouring in. Disappointment, anger, resentment as the next morning rolled around. I felt buoyant hope as students poured out of classrooms to protest and learning that the bulk of the 18-25 vote throughout the country went to Clinton. I felt fear as rising incidents of racism happened around the country. I felt shame every time I looked at my child.I felt paranoia when talking to my husband about how we should prepare for the racist days ahead.

Most of all though, the feeling I have experienced the most, the one that weighs me down is helplessness and knowing I was not enough. I voted. I did my civic duty and that was not enough. I pled on social media that everyone should vote. I harassed my family to go vote and that was not enough. All those nasty women that proudly voted, All those stickers on suffragettes, all of us, we were not enough.

Where do we go from here? We take deep breaths, we fight for our liberties and equality. We stand up for those around us that are being bullied. We do more, We be More, because what I did, who I was, it was not enough.

My husband honestly believes that in a few weeks the violence, the outrage, the protests will die down and America will return to life as usual. He believes that with it everything I am feeling will dull down. I keep explaining to him that maybe in the past that might have been true. However, Everytime my child looks at me, I hold myself to more. This isnt about my fear, my rights, this is about hers. This is about the future I want her to have. No it wont die down. No it wont change, I wont let it and if you believe for a single second that America is for all Americans, for every community to live in equality and peace, you shouldnt either.

Our Voting wasnt enough, the bigots outmaneuvered us due to the Electoral College.

Taking the High road wasnt enough, they cut our legs out from under us when they went Low by spreading lies, bigotry and stoking people’s fear. We expected people to do the right thing, but America went into the polling booths and did no such thing.

We need to do more, we need to do better and we need to hold ourselves to more. They will fight dirty, we have to be willing to give people the means to sift through the mud that is being flung in all directions. I need to do more, I am not sure how, I am not sure where to start but I need to do more.

The next few years arent just going to be about explaining to my child why our President’s policies are against her as a woman or as a minority. It might even be about keeping her from bodily harm. I might have to protect her from those that want to hurt her for the color of her skin, for her gender and to hold her back. She will have to fight twice as hard as a girl and one of color. Therefore I have to fight harder for her to give her the equal playing field that our government no longer will.

It was not enough to vote, I have to do more. I was not enough this time and I failed my child, I failed me and I failed so many other children, women. I am not sure what, but I have to do more.

Note: to trolls comments are moderated so dont even bother trying.


Sleep Battles

A was born a strong-willed baby. She refused to be swaddled and didn’t want to lie down flat (we knew it was reflux and her colitis). She has always fought naps, always fought sleep.

Somewhere around when she was 4 months old, I was so determined to get her to sleep that I put her on a tight routine watching every minute like a hawk. It worked a little bit but not much.

She continued to be a light sleeper, up at the slightest sound and even when she did nap soundly it was never for more than 30 minutes.

It wasnt till after her 1 Year Birthday that I discovered the relief you might feel when a baby naps for say 2 hours at a time (She was also doing only one solid nap at a time). It was joyous but short-lived. Around 14 months she went back to sleeping for less than an hour, twice a day and 8 hours at night.

She has never slept what the websites say babies her age should be sleeping. 14-15 hours a day HAH! Believe me, I have tried everything. She still nurses several times a night too but that is a different story.

I knew I was overwhelmed last week, with DH’s work schedule accelerating, with me working from home and taking care of a toddler that didn’t sleep much etc. I knew I was not really doing a bang up job but I was managing and that was good enough for me. I was okay knowing that for the next few weeks, she would watch some tv while I cooked and got a handle on things. I knew that for the next few weeks, I would work less than usual and let a few things slide and I was okay with that. I knew for the next few weeks it would be about survival and I was okay with that. What I was not okay with was not knowing what was causing her to thrash and cry in her sleep like that.

I just thought I wanted to get ahead of the one thing that was stressing me to breaking point, the reasons for her restless night. I didn’t know if it was something she ate, something I ate, her molar that is threatening to emerge for a few weeks but not doing so, whether it was night terrors, a growth spurt or what. I thought it would be perfect timing to talk to my Dr about it at her 15 month appointment.

Maybe it was that A kept screaming from the moment we entered the exam room, she turned red and then purple, screeching and crying and kicking and punching. Maybe it was trying to have a conversation with the Dr while holding on to a thrashing and wailing baby. Maybe it was the sleep deprivation that caught up to me. His words felt like an accusation, here we were not communicating. He kept saying I needed to force her to stay awake and work harder at giving her a routine. I kept trying to ask reason after reason that she might be thrashing in her sleep at night.

I came out of the appointment (after holding my baby through vaccines and a blood draw with more thrashing and screaming) depleted, worn out and defeated. I tried calling my DH but he had some mtg or the other, he wasn’t available.  I vented on twitter but mostly I just sat at home that day and cried.

SideNote: I never really express how much the support all you tweetbuddies give me. I really do appreciate it. I think on some days it is the only thing tethering me to my sanity.

Well Saturday Morning I decided to go back to trying harder to give her a routine. I forced her awake at 8 am, and stuck to one nap. She slept 8 hours Friday night and 2 hour nap during day on Saturday. She went to sleep by 9 pm Sat night and stayed asleep (mostly).

She still cried a few times (nightmares?). Around 3:30 am had her long feed as she tends to do every night. Around 4:30 there was a lot of thrashing, she wouldn’t get comfortable and I finally realized her diaper had leaked, wet clothes, wet crib sheet. We changed diaper and clothes and I kept her in my mattress, because I wanted her to go back to sleep as soon as possible.

Sunday Morning: I accidentally overslept and let her sleep till 9 AM. ** Internal Screaming because the plan was to wake her up at 8 everyday**

Well its almost 4 pm and she has refused every attempt to nap today.  She will be going straight to bed now around 8 pm. (I am not holding my breath at winning this battle though).