Mothers Over 40

The Delicate (And Sometimes Painful But Growth-Producing) Art of Co-Parenting

co-parentingOn the eve of what would have been my 15th wedding anniversary, I’m thinking about how I felt on the night before my wedding.

I remember vividly how excited I was to marry my long-time friend. It felt completely right to be laughing with him, eating dinner surrounded by our family and friends, ready to cheer us on as we began our new life. Not only was I in love, but I was full of hope for the promise of what was before us. There was no hint of the idea that this type of love would not last forever.

Fast forward to this afternoon – leaving work in a hurry to meet the bus at my house to pick up my son at drop off and race to my daughter’s soccer game. I was looking forward to it as it was the first I’d been able to attend in two weeks. On the ride there my son asked, “Will Daddy be there?”

“I don’t know Buddy,” I replied not giving it much thought. We hadn’t discussed it during our hurried text conversation of who was picking up who within the last couple days and at that particular moment, he was on my nerves. We’d had a disagreement only days before, so his presence at the game was not on my mind. [Read More…]

By |October 12th, 2015|Categories: Commentary, Daily Living, Motherhood, Mothers Over 40, Reinventing Ourselves|Tags: , |0 Comments

Autumn Musings

leafIn Love With Death

Fifteen years ago, I was talking to a woman at a party who told me she absolutely hated the Fall season.  No bones about it – she loathed it and would never feel any different, no matter how many picture perfect postcards you could wave of New England’s vibrant color change.

To this day, this mystifies me. My favorite month of the year is October.  I am invigorated from October 1st till well after the Christmas holidays.  The month of October rejuvenates my spirit and I believe that the air I breathe in during that month sustains me for the rest of the year.

This same woman told me that the only thing she felt during the fall was the impending notion of winter.  It was as if on exactly September 21st, her bones began to brace themselves for all things cold.  At the time she had two small children and I asked her if the kids liked jumping in piles of leaves, apple picking, or of course, the thrill of Halloween.  She told me that she didn’t do leaf piles(there might be ticks) and yes she did Halloween but it was generally in a safe place like the mall.  [Read More…]

Teens and Hate – A Scientific Life Lesson

Stansell Daughter - Scientific Life LessonYou know what I HATE the most?  I hate hate. And, I REALLY hate it when my children say they hate something.  In fact, I hate it so much that I hate to even write this.

I hate it when people say, “Don’t you hate it when….”  I hate that there is hate in the world that causes me to have to write about hate to help people see why it doesn’t even make sense to hate anything.  OK. Enough.  Blech!  I think you get the point.

Here’s what has me riled up:

The other day, my 8th grade daughter was getting herself ready for school.  I’m proud of her because, until now, I’d have to get up early to make sure she’s out of bed in time.

[Read More…]

Where Did the Time Go?? (Letting Go of My Teenager – One Step At a Time)

IMG_3153 (1)My sweet toddler, who only a minute ago was going off to pre-school, is starting high school this week.  I am terrified!

All these spinning emotions are rising to the surface and I woke today with butterflies in my gut.

I was in high school 42 year ago and I don’t have a clue where to begin with all the changes that have taken place.

It’s times like these that I wish my daughter had an older sibling, cousin, someone who could bridge the gap and be there to navigate this new terrain for the next four years. [Read More…]

My Gentle Little Warrior

Carmel's daughterIt’s hard to believe that it was a year ago that we were all chucking buckets of water over each other in the worldwide charity bid to raise money through the Ice Bucket Challenge.

Once our news feeds dried off the last few droplets of icy water, in its stead were dozens of first day of school pictures.

I remember every detail of that time so clearly. Why? Because last year, my daughter Amelia Rose, embarked on one of the biggest adventures of a child’s young life – she started junior infants. [Read More…]

The Long Wave Goodbye

Dear Reader: Each year, I repost this essay, written when my children were young. However, it remains true to me; the original wave is etched in my heart and mind forever.  school bus

Today, I waved to my daughter riding away on the bus. The silly kind of wave – two arms, as if jumping for dear-life and flagging down a passing ship.  We both continued waving until the bus was out of sight.  Walking back to my house, I had a lump in my throat. I am both happy and sad.

I’m sad for the time which is passing so quickly; sad, too, that I see that my parenting must be working well – my own daughter still longs for me.  (I did not have that with my own mother.) I waited a long time to become a mother (again). I will continue to try my hardest to fulfill her need until her hands stop reaching for mine, the arm waves stop, and I see her waving to her friends – not me. That time is coming. In fact, it’s just around the corner.

Writer Kelly Salasin blogged, “There are so many deaths in mothering, beginning at the beginning, and arriving every day after. But equally matched with these deaths are the blessings of a new life – new growth – new possibility.” These words resonate with me and touch my heart. [Read More…]

Breastfeeding Halves Your Chances of Post-Natal Depression

Milky MomentsCan breastfeeding make you happy?

It does me, albeit, after a shaky start.

Now there is proof that it can lower your risk of depression.

A UK report says, post natal depression is more than double in women who planned to breastfeed and then were unable to, whereas the women who planned to breastfeed and then did are 50% less likely to be affected. This is significant when you consider that 1 in 10 women develop depression after the birth of a child. [Read More…]

Summertime and the Living …

Nancy Rodgers kids and pool…Was Easy

Growing up in the 60’s and 70’s with a ton of siblings and a block filled with kids all the same varied ages; summertime was heaven on earth.  On our street on Long Island, there could be, on any given summer day, twenty or so kids of various ages, still playing well into the dusk hours.

By sunset, we had already finished endless innings of stickball, had climbed numerous trees, played kick the can and ring-a-lario(a game that would probably be outlawed today) and were ready for the evening activity of catching fireflies and roasting marshmallows, on real sticks that you had to find.

These memories of summer are emblazoned in my memory, more and more these days as I struggle with the question of “what to do with my 10-year-old boy” on these long, warm, glorious days. [Read More…]

Our Summer Vacation

Jo-Ann Rogan's familyWe are a typical family, Mom, Dad, two boys. I work part-time so that I am around for my kids, I was vice president of the PTA in school last year, and I am on the board of directors of my kids swim team.

We live in a lovely little urban neighborhood where it is possible for my kids to play outside by themselves and they know many of the names of the dogs and owners who pass our house on their way to the park and we are not beyond a “deck night” with the neighbors. All just ordinary stuff, the only thing that makes us different is my husband and I are in a hardcore punk band together.

The band was active in the 90’s and we spend the better part of a decade on the road until I discovered I was pregnant at the ripe age of 38. After the band had fiery break up, I moved on with the guitarist to marriage, parenthood, and middle age. [Read More…]

Helping Your Kids Find Fitness

Celia HuddartMy husband and I own a gym. Our daughter, Celia, has been hanging out there for years. Sometimes she worked out, sometimes she didn’t. But she was around it, watching all sorts of people work hard, in all sorts of ways.

We never pushed it one way or another. If anything, I  tried to steer her away from taking fitness too seriously, what with the constant messaging to teenage girls that they should be slim and sexy and….  We just let her hang out there. When she felt like giving it a shot, we simply let her.

Last weekend, she won a Silver Medal at the USA Weightlifting Youth Nationals. I was the last person who expected that, and I sure as hell didn’t push for it. [Read More…]

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