Reinventing Ourselves

10 Tips for Coping With January Blues

Feeling down in the dumps now that the holidays are over? If you’re hoping for something uplifting on these dreary days and cold nights, you’re not alone. T.S. Eliot, in The Waste Land, said, “April is the cruelest month.”

But studies have found that for the majority of Americans, January is the most depressing month of the year. [Read More…]

The Spirit That Counts

When we were young, we approached the holidays with anticipation because we “knew” they contained magic. We believed in a world of open-ended possibilities.

But then we grew up, and we moved further and further away from such things and, sadly, from our natural, spiritual, way of being. As adults, too often we allow the expectations of others (parents, religious leaders, teachers, family, friends) to be placed upon us, along with the associated guilt, if we do not live up to them. For many, the holidays have become nothing more than pressure-filled weeks chocked full of check lists and coping mechanisms. And now, deep down, we feel that we have lost something and we don’t know what it is. [Read More…]

Kindly Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future

Nicholas as a babyWith shopping, cooking, decorating, organizing, scheduling, mailing, and the balancing of familial personalities, holidays are not always as joyful as they are stressful. While the rest of us will be running around like chickens…or turkeys…with our heads cut off, my son will be awaiting the arrival of the red-suited man with the jolly laugh. I remember doing the same as a hopeful young boy.

I can remember the glory of Christmas Eve when I was a kid. The house was filled with green and red anticipation. Unmistakable seasonal aromas hung in the air in and around our cozy kitchen. My mom made pans upon pans of butterballs,date cookies and egg biscuits each in their own sugary powder or glaze. I’m not saying that family drama wasn’t going on around us, only that I cannot remember it from my blissfully ignorant rearview mirror. [Read More…]

Now Is Your One Last Chance

Having lived a number of years in Japan, I’ve often heard the Japanese phrase ichi-go ichi-e—literally, “one time, one meeting”—described by Japanese and Westerners alike as carpe diem, “seize the day.” Or, if you prefer the pop-culture version, “YOLO.” [Read More…]

My Top 13 Mommy Confessions

I’m not typically a Mommy who worries.  Really. 

But I have my moments.  I have my doubts, fears, and insecurities like many Moms do.

Or do they?

Maybe it is just me?  [Read More…]

Excerpts from Ch. 6 of the Book, The Wilderness of Motherhood

The Wilderness of Motherhood book coverDear Reader: We are so pleased to present an excerpt from MotheringintheMiddle.com contributor Lora Freeman Williams’ newly published book:

When Isaac is five weeks old, my mother dies. She has just turned 65.

My home phone rings while I’m taking a nap with the baby. It awakens me, and I decide to let it ring. When my cell begins to ring next, I realize that it is the hospital trying my second number. The nurse tells me Mom’s oxygen levels are dropping, the end near.

I cry hard for a few minutes. I’m thinking I can’t do this alone. I need help. So I call a friend, and Karen picks us up a short time later.

When we arrive, I see my mother is gasping for breath, and I feel like the little girl I once was, in big trouble. It’s like times she wanted me to fix things that were far beyond my ability to fix. The nurse tells this is what the body does as “part of the process.” She also tells me that Mom can still hear.

I go into her room, holding Isaac. [Read More…]

“Unleashing the Truth” (Excerpts From Ch. 4 of the Book, Real Eyes Faith)

Dear Reader: We’re so pleased to feature the writing of our own Wendy Sue Noah, on today’s launching of her book, Real Eyes Faith

Phoenixes burst into flame when it is time for them to die and are reborn from the ashes.”  ― J.K. RowlingHarry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

“Why did this smart vivacious woman stay with such a monster?”

 I get this question a lot.

First, there was my interpretation of blind faith that God really wanted me there. Second I had no friends or family in Los Angeles. Finally with each child, I felt more and more stuck.

If I we did not have children, I can say with conviction that I would have left him early in our relationship, like the first three wives.

With each child, I felt more pressure. I would never leave my babies. I couldn’t imagine running away to a shelter with them. In my clouded view, there were no other options. The irony of necessity brought a solution I dismissed. We’ve all experienced a “wake-up call” at some point in our lives. A moment of clarity provides both a call to action and the strength to carry it out. It was time for change. The moment of clarity for me, when I realized with real eyes came from innocence. [Read More…]

8 Tips For Boomer Women To Better Enjoy Their Friendships

We can say without a doubt that intimate friendships have always been important to women. But have you noticed that they’ve become even more so as you face the transitions of children growing up and parents growing older?

Findings from a recent MacArthur Foundation Study indicate that the emotional security and social support that these relationships provide for women have been a survival strategy for them in adversity. In fact, friendship is one of the keys to a long and more satisfying life. [Read More…]

“Working” Woman (Me)

A few weeks ago I stood waiting on my coffee at the counter of my neighborhood Starbucks. Making small talk, the young male barista smiled and asked, “You headed to work?”

My mind went into overdrive. [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 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 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 will continue to try my hardest to fulfill that 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. [Read More…]

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