to the multiple miscarriage mom

fall-leaves

First of all, I want you to know that you’re not alone here, in this multiple loss purgatory where nothing makes sense and you feel like you don’t have a place.

But you do.

The first loss was bad enough, I know. Not only having the rug ripped out from under you like that, but also being consumed with a type of grief you didn’t know was possible. The type that when it hit, it felt like a Mack truck covered in railroad spikes.

But you survived.

You also had a home. You became part of The Miscarriage Club – that unfortunate 1 in 4. You rolled the dice and lost the first round, but at least you weren’t alone. Literally millions of women were right there with you.

And just like with everything else, when it was over, you picked up the pieces and moved on – because that’s what people do. And perhaps in a naive moment, you thought that maybe you got it out of the way. That maybe from now on, your body will know what to do.

Next time, it’ll stick.

And maybe it did. But then it didn’t again, and now you’re stuck in this weird, awful place that’s so much harder to define. Who are you now? What group do you belong to now?

And try as it might, your rational brain can’t silence your emotional brain – because grief is not rational. You wake up in the middle of the night making lists of the reasons why it ended again: stress, work, flying on an airplane, scooping cat litter, drinking half a beer, having a cold, taking 14,000 steps a day, moving furniture, mopping the floors.

You’re exhausted and angry. You’re inconceivably sad, but you don’t want anyone to know so you self-medicate which leads to self-sabotage and one morning after yet another mortifying blackout night you realize that you’re done.

You can’t do this anymore.

You can’t keep hurting yourself, and the people who love you.

So I need you to know a few things, so that like me, you don’t end up doing shots of pure vodka one night and wake up the next morning with a laundry list of apology letters to write. Or worse.

1) You have a place

Remember earlier when I said you have a place? I meant it. It may not seem like it, but recurrent miscarriage still affects millions of women, so you’re not even close to being alone. And if you need help like I did in silencing your irrational brain, these 5 Myths About Recurrent Miscarriage are surprisingly helpful.

2) You’re not stupid for having hope

It’s okay to lower your expectations so that if things go south, you don’t feel disappointed. This is a common defense tactic that in theory, is a great idea. But here’s the thing: being a pessimist doesn’t lessen the blow. Because no matter how brave a face you put forward, it still hurts like hell. So don’t kick yourself for believing in something. Just because it’s not happening for you right now, doesn’t mean it never well. Pain is real, but so is hope.

3) Not everyone knows how to talk to us, and that’s okay

I’m sure you remember this from your first loss. Meaningless platitudes are infuriating when you’re grieving, but be patient with the people who love you. They may not know what to say, and they almost always say the wrong thing, but it’s not their fault. They love you and they are trying. Remember that.

4) It’s okay to be angry

I’m mad as hell, and you should be too. So be angry. Don’t pretend that you’re not because trust me, the second you shove all those feelings deep down into the pit of your stomach (and in my case, pour alcohol on top of them – see #6), they make a pact to jump back out at the most inopportune times and have the potential to carry some pretty heavy consequences.

5) Be kind to yourself

No one sees how hard we are on ourselves behind closed doors. Why didn’t I eat better? Lose some weight? Put my feet up more? I should never have lifted those boxes. The human brain is designed to look for cause and effect when something terrible happens because as human beings, we’re desperate for answers. Of course, most of the time we never get them, so sometimes we simply believe we’re to blame. Or we’re broken. But guess what? We’re not broken. And it is not our fault. Sometimes we slip-up too, and that’s okay. You’re allowed slip-ups, just like anyone else. Forgive yourself. 

6) Don’t pour alcohol on top of your feelings

This one, I unfortunately know a lot about. As the title of this blog suggests, I’m no stranger to problem drinking. It’s been my coping mechanism ever since I was a teenager, and it’s only gotten worse with time and tragedy. Instead of dealing with my feelings in a healthy, adult way, I have always been more comfortable burying them at the bottom of a box of wine, or several cases of beer. As you can imagine, it’s been highly ineffective. I’ve come to realize that aside from hurting literally everyone who cares about you, drinking doesn’t allow you to feel anything. It masks the pain, and until you feel each loss—I mean really feel it—you will always be stuck at the bottom of a bottle. Don’t get stuck there. It’s uglier than you could ever imagine.

7) Take care of you

No one else knows the anxiety you face, or will face, the moment that line turns pink. While most women jump for joy and even live-blog the minute their urine translates into an adorable plus sign on a stick, we cringe and sweat and our heart leaps into our throat. What if it happens again? Our minds inevitably shift into replay mode and the past flashes before us like some sort of twisted home movie. It’s not exciting anymore – it’s terrifying. So take care of yourself, and allow yourself to grieve. Sleep, even though your mind doesn’t shut off. Eat, even though everything is tasteless. Talk to someone. Vent to your best friend. Write about your pain. Slow down. Put your feet up. Grab a big bag of Chicago Mix, and take a deep breath. You’ve got this.

October is Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month. To read more about the PAIL Network, click here.

i took a toddler camping so you don’t have to

Ah, summer in Canada. Long hot days full of family, friends, cottages and camping. It’s easily the best time of the year.

It is until you decide to one day pack your car to the tits and drive three hours deep into the brush to share a single tent with a fussy toddler for two nights.

Probably this wasn't safe.

Probably this wasn’t safe.

I’ve had the equivalent of about eight hours of sleep in the last two days and my current state of mind is whatever the complete polar opposite of calm and relaxed is. I’m supposed to be on “vacation”, but I’m slowly quickly learning that the word vacation no longer exists in this majestic, mystical parenting realm, where good intentions never seem to pan out and sleep goes to die.

There are no days off when you’re a parent, even on vacation. And if you think camping is an exception, you’ll be coming away with more regret than the time I drank a comically-oversized tube of rum and then went on the upside down roller coaster on the Las Vegas strip.

Mistakes were made that day.

Mistakes were made.

I don’t know what we were expecting. Glorious, relaxing sunsets and snuggles in the wilderness?* No parent is that naive. But we both enjoy camping and thought that perhaps along with his unfortunate pointy ears, this too could be passed down to our son.

Were one or two moments of relaxation peppered with fond memories of chasing a busy little boy as he explored the outdoors too much to ask for?

Of course they were.

It went downhill from here pretty quickly.

It went downhill from here pretty quickly.

We had only been there 10 minutes when we realized we had made a huge mistake. At just shy of 20 months old, we are balls deep in the terrible twos. So when Liam was not busy actively ignoring every god damn thing we were saying and dissolving into a full-blown temper tantrum when he couldn’t watch Paw Patrol, he was taking off down a busy dirt road and jamming fistfulls of mud, sand and lake water into his mouth. Other activities he enjoyed included stealing other children’s toys, trespassing, and throwing a four-hour overnight party in his playpen.

So if you’re a parent of a young toddler and are toying with the idea of taking him or her camping for the first time, I suggest you consider the following:

  • Take that idea and launch it into the sun.

In all seriousness, here are three valuable lessons I learned the hard way. Please, do the right thing and share them with as many new parents as you can.

1. Keep your friends close, and your campgrounds closer
If you’ve never taken your child camping and have reservations about their ability to handle non-stop noise, flies, heat and dirt, don’t choose a campground more than an hour away from home. We would have left after one night, but the prospect of driving three hours back home after just getting there the night before was more daunting than knowing we had to get through the day on less than four hours sleep. Another obvious hot tip: try camping for only one night at first. I was overruled on all accounts, so as I write this during hour one of our three hour journey home, I would like to take this opportunity to say I fucking told you so, dear.

2. A 1.5-year-old is too young to take camping
In theory, you can take anyone camping at any age. You can take your diabetic 95 year old great great uncle Horace camping if you like, but that doesn’t mean that you should. In our case, Liam’s almost non-existent attention span and inability to focus and listen coupled with the short list of activities he could realistically participate in made it difficult to entertain him for two solid days (and nights). I would say the youngest children at our campground were at least three or four. That would also explain the looks of confusion and pity. Yes, three or four is when we will try this again, and not a god damn millisecond sooner.

3. A single tent for two parents and a baby: are you high?
Normally, Liam is a fantastic sleeper – in his own quiet, comfortable, dark room. And normally, I am a solid decision maker. So when I agreed that plopping a playpen in between two blow-up mattresses inside a 10 x 10 Coleman tent would be a positive sleeping experience for everyone involved, I began to seriously question my ability to make any type of sound judgment. The minute Liam woke up and saw both of his parents curled up in the fetal position praying for sweet sweet death, sleep time ended and party time began. The next family camping fiasco (should this trip not end in legal separation), will feature compartmentalized tents, trailers, or me getting a room at the Hilton two towns over.

Okay, so it wasn’t all bad – just 95% of it was. The weather was gorgeous, the water was warm, and we even managed to have a few adult beverages over the fire. We still made memories (albeit mostly miserable ones), and most importantly, we learned some valuable lessons that will hopefully make the next family camping trip (in the very, very distant future) a little more enjoyable.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ll be spending the next 15 minutes – and the majority of what remains of my vacation – quietly sobbing in the shower.

No calls.

What the hell did you bring me here for?

What the hell did you bring me here for?

*Hilarious quote credit: Jennifer Stewart

pants: a new kind of victory

I used to, you know, do some pretty cool stuff.

Believe it or not, once upon a time, I actually had the balls to ditch North America for a while and shack up in France. It ended up being the most incredible experience of my life, and some days, I can’t help but wonder what it would have been like if I’d stayed.

I learned a hell of a lot about myself that year (mostly that I could never, ever be a teacher), forgot picked up a new language, and saw nearly all of western Europe. Spending a year overseas was easily the best decision I’ve ever made, and one time I decided to make spaghetti and then bake it into a loaf of bread.

Picture 118

These French kids are probably all married now. I’m still not.


Clearly a fashion icon in Milan.

Clearly a fashion icon in Milan.


Pretending I know the first thing about art in Barcelona, Spain.

Pretending I know the first thing about art in Barcelona, Spain.


Stunned in the streets of Monaco.

Stunned in the streets of Monaco.

Alas, my carefree globetrotting days are behind me. So is all much of that juicy early-20s freedom. And those early-20s victories.

I’m not exploring the planet or learning a new language anymore. I’m not taking on a classroom full of French five-year-olds who I basically have to perform an elaborate mime to to get them to understand me.

My victories are a little different these days. Today’s accomplishments include going to bed early, not eating Nutella straight out of the jar with a spoon, keeping a little boy alive and working towards some semblance of a career.

But this morning — I added another one to that list.

Pants.

Don't you hate pants?

Don’t you hate pants?

In early 2006, I bought a pair of white Capri pants in a small town just north of Paris, and I still have them to this day. They were always a little too big until I quit breastfeeding and began treating my body like a 24 hour-a-day garbage disposal.

Lately, however, I’ve been working really hard to transform my marshmallow-esque figure back into something that somewhat resembles a human female. It’s been slow and it’s been hard, but this morning, it finally felt worth it.

My France Pants fit again.

Now where’s the cake?

I think it's back here behind the liquid cucumber, Ma.

I think it’s back here behind the liquid cucumber, Ma.

taking back the tatas

Who wants to read about my boobs again?

flash

To those of you who read my blog but do not give a flying frig about parenting and babies–I am truly sorry for this post. I hope you’re going to read it anyway, because let’s be honest–what else are you going to do on a frigid Thursday night in January besides eat leftover Christmas candy and watch reruns of The Big Bang Theory? Have some self respect.

As all three of my followers  you probably already know, nursing my now 14-month old nipple ninja hasn’t exactly been a walk in the park. From the early, panic-ridden days of simply learning how to latch, to a 22-day hospital moratorium on breast milk, to recurring bouts of thrush–it’s been at times, a legitimate waking nightmare.

But you know what? I’m proud as hell of those scars.

We did good, kid.

breastfeeding

Oh this?  This is just us proving them wrong when they said we’d never nurse again.

Tonight I will breastfeed my son for the last time.

Truthfully, I’ve been nursing longer than he’s both wanted and needed to. And before the breastfeeding bandits start clicking their tongues and wagging their fingers, please note that I am in fact aware that nursing beyond one year of age is a valuable source of nutrition and disease protection.

But he’s throwing on the floor eating a regular, well-balanced diet now in addition to nursing both morning and night. He wants food more, and breast milk less. Besides, the convenience factor just isn’t there anymore. Not a day goes by where he doesn’t yell at my chest in frustration (probably because it’s pretty much tapped out) or give me a purple nurple or smack in the face. It’s time to face the facts: my baby doesn’t need my milk anymore.

He’s ready to wean.

All the big boy food.

Gimme dat big boy food, ma.

And so am I.

So this morning, I left my 11th consecutive refill of Domperidone on my nightstand and went to work. Tonight, after dinner, I’ll wash crusty food out of his hair, read him a bedtime story, and we’ll nurse one final time.

He’ll probably twist my nipple until I say “OW”, then laugh like a miniature psychopath.

And I’ll cry–mostly for my nipple, but maybe a little for me, too.

7 things i failed to do before my baby turned one

Right before my son was born, I was a straight-up manatee. You could typically find me crying over the discovery of a new stretch mark or eating cold, leftover cannelloni with my bare hands like some sort of deranged gremlin.

Man.

Those last few days of pregnancy: not glowing.

being-pregnant-sucks

Hey, don’t get pregnant

But one year ago today (two days after the above photo was taken), my sweet little babychild was carved out of my belly and my foray into the bizarre world of motherhood began.

I bet you thought I was going to take this opportunity to bore you to death with an emotional tribute to the most adorable baby on earth (I’m not kidding though–he actually is the most adorable baby on earth and all other children are total garbage), but I’m not. Y’all know that ain’t my style, anyway. Besides:

  1. Shit’s lame, and
  2. Literally nobody cares

Instead, I thought I’d bring some hard-hitting realness to your Friday with my own personal spin on a popular mommy blog theme: Ten Things You MUST DO Before Your Baby Turns One and Learns How To Unlock Your Phone and Butt Dial Your Ex.

Still not familiar? Okay, here–I looked them up for you. Huffington Post did this one. BabyCentre did this. And Babble did this.

So, how realistic are these things?

Let’s find out.

7 THINGS I FAILED TO DO BEFORE MY BABY TURNED ONE

1) Get Fit You Big Fat Pig:Take A Post-Natal Exercise Class
Oh man, this is already the best. Okay, look–full disclosure. I actually signed up for a series of mommy-and-baby-yoga classes when Liam was about 10 weeks old. Disgusting, right? Quick–ask me if I’ve ever taken a yoga class in my life. Go ahead, I’ll wait.

NO. NO I HAVE NOT.

Mercifully, these classes didn’t exactly demand that you perfect Pungu Mayurasana or anything (yes, that is an actual yoga pose that I looked up, also known as the Wounded Peacock). They were more of an opportunity for mom to do some light stretching and get out of the house.

But that’s just it. Even 10 weeks in, getting out of the house with a baby was still a frantic ordeal. I arrived late and frazzled every time, and the worst part was I didn’t feel relaxed, or “zen” afterwards. Liam had no idea what the hell was going on during these classes, and I think it goes without saying that I was in no better shape than when I started. I was still fat, awkward and cranky. Wounded Peacock, indeed.

What is yoga, even?

2) Find A Babysitter So You Don’t Get PPD
The nearest grandparent lives 500 kilometers away (that’s 310 miles for my one American subscriber), and I haven’t befriended any teenagers because quite frankly, they scare me. I understand that having a baby means no more drinking until your Uber driver has to pull over so you can throw up on the side of the road, but if I don’t get a break soon, I’m going to start cutting myself.

3) Take Your Kid To The Library, You Degenerate
Confession time! The last time I set foot in a library was for my prenatal class over a year ago. That’s right: I HAVE NEVER TAKEN MY BABY TO THE LIBRARY. Not once. But his dad just installed a bookshelf in his bedroom while I double-fisted wine and leftover Halloween candy, so that’s pretty much the same thing.

baby-bookshelf-DIY

“I have no idea what I’m looking at here.”

4) Throw Your Baby In A Pool And See What Happens
Okay–again, full disclosure. I also did the baby swimming lessons thing. But I’m going to explain to you why it was also a massive failure that in no way benefited me, my baby, or that cesspool of a public pee tank.

First of all, the instructor was a 19 year old college bro named Bo, Zack, or equivalent. Affable, nice kid–but with absolutely ZERO understanding of how babies work, how a baby swim class should be taught, or even the correct lyrics to The Wheels on the Bus. He was a complete fish out of water (pun intended), and if it wasn’t for my white-hot rage at his abject incompetence, I would have felt sorry for him.

Secondly, I should have waited. Liam was barely four months old when I decided that yes, he’s absolutely ready to be snapped into a baby lifejacket and sent paddling downstream. I shouldn’t have pushed it. The poor guy was still working on his basic head/neck control, and here I was CIA-style dunking him like a power-hungry Guantanamo guard.

Finally, Liam peed in the pool every single time, and once I accidentally got pool water in my mouth and had to take a mommy time out. Swim diapers do NOT prevent baby urine from seeping into the pool–just a friendly public service announcement for the next time you decide to head on down to the old community centre to do a few laps.

baby-swimming-lessons

Spot the soaking wet, petrified baby clinging to my shoulder for dear life

5) Draw Up A Will Because You Live In Sin
Just because I hate the idea of marriage doesn’t mean my child should be exposed to the cruel possibility of becoming a ward of the state should both of his unwed parents tragically perish.

Okay, so that’s not exactly true, but I did some research and found out that common-law partners in Canada don’t have the same rights married couples do when it comes to estates–which quite frankly, is complete bullshit.

*fast forward to 15 minutes later*

I legitimately just called a lawyer and set up an appointment. Blogging: helping me sort out my life since 2014.

6) Join A Playgroup And Exacerbate Your Already Crippling Social Anxiety
Now I know what you’re thinking–hey Becca, you’ve got such smooth blogger swag. I bet you’re a hit at parties.

But truth be told, I’m fairly awkward in real life despite my captivating online presence. It’s easier to hide behind a screen and make self-deprecating jokes about being an unfit mother than it is to engage socially with others about the frequency and volume of spit-up.

I’ve avoided playgroups for that very reason, thereby depriving my child of a welcome change of scenery and valuable social interaction.

At least he has his kitty friends to keep him company.

7) Do Something For Yourself And Make Sure It Isn’t Exercise
Please refer to my above rant about my lack of babysitting services. I think my leg hair can be braided at this point. I don’t even remember what being alone for more than 10 minutes feels like. But even more outrageous–can you believe that one of these blogs actually had the audacity to suggest that ‘entering a race’ was something you could “do for yourself”?

Something I do for myself: eat jumbo packs of KitKat bars while sitting alone in my car in the driveway.

Something I don’t do for myself: run a f*cking marathon.

This has made me viscerally angry. To calm down, maybe I’ll book a massage because THAT IS ANOTHER THING YOU DO FOR YOURSELF.

cat-massage-funny

Okay, so sure. I failed at at LEAST seven things this past year. But you know what? I also kicked ass in a hell of a lot more.

I really hope people don’t take these blogs too seriously.  Yes, there were some reasonable tips. But not all of us have the means or capacity to run marathons, go on lavish holidays or literally beg someone who isn’t grandma to babysit.

And that’s perfectly okay.

Did your baby smile at you today? Then congratulations–you’ve failed at nothing, mom.

Now go get that massage.

Happy birthday, buddy. You're the best thing I've ever done.

Happy birthday, buddy. You’re the best thing I’ve ever done.

i changed my mind about having a baby and i hope that’s okay with you

I used to be in favour of the death penalty.

Whoa.

This is a little heavy for a Friday, no?

Don’t worry. I’m not about to have a capital punishment debate on my baby blog. But yes, I used to support it. And then one day, I had a serious discussion about the moral, ethical and socioeconomic implications with a friend, and I started thinking about my reasons for backing it.  I invested the next few days into reading as much as I could, and striking up some heavy conversations with some unlucky friends.

At the end of those few days, I realized that my previous reasons no longer made sense to me. They just didn’t feel good deep down in the pit of my stomach (presumably where my conscience lives, I don’t know, I’m not a doctor).

So I changed my mind.

what-if-i-told-you-meme

Changing your mind is rad. It’s how we learn and grow. I mean, I used to believe that being a loud-mouth, intolerable alcoholic was an acceptable way to live your life. Today, I believe that slightly less.

Progress.

I also used to not want children. In fact, I was very open and adamant about that, to the point of it being obnoxious. But truthfully, I never liked kids–and not just because kids were the fashionable thing to hate on in your 20s.

I was just never really that comfortable around them.

I guess I never gave them a chance, much like high school math. Save the one or two arbitrary babysitting experiences in my gawky, gap-toothed teenage years, by the time I reached technical adulthood, I was about as experienced with kids as I was with boyfriends.

Spoiler alert: I had 0 boyfriends in high school.

You can fact check that little diddy with all the cute boys who looked directly through me in the hallway for four years, or who nicknamed me “Becky Foreskin” in grade 9 music class.

(Before you question me any further on that moniker, you should first know that my last name is Ford–a name that teenage boys somehow believed sounded more or less identical to the technical term for the tip of the male genitalia).

Moving on.

So ya–kids. Never really liked ’em. Never really understood ’em. They always made me kind of uneasy, and they knew it. It’s like when a cat knows you’re deathly allergic to it–it just rubs up on you more.

most-interesting-cat-in-the-world

Child-minding was not my calling, and kids weren’t my bag. So naturally, I figured motherhood was also out. I spent the majority of my 20s partying, traveling, and generally being an insufferable waste of space. Kids never crossed my mind.

Then one day I woke up in my 30s and revisited my reasons for not wanting kids. A lot of them no longer made sense, much like my views on the zippy zap chair. And although I’ve grappled a lot in the past with the misguided notion that changing your mind makes you a hypocrite, I’m at peace with it now.

mom-baby-park

For what it’s worth, I also finally feel pretty comfortable with this thing.

So what if you used to believe one thing, but now you believe another?

It’s perfectly okay.

Hell, I used to go to church every Sunday, and I turned out just fine.

that-look-you-give-other-atheists

Sorry, mom.

i’m going to milk myself at my desk every day, and other lies we tell

I’ll get to the whole pumping at work debacle in just a minute, but first, can we talk about how we lie to ourselves–and each other–like all the time?

I’ll go first.

During my first week back to work, I must have faced the “How does it feel to be back?” question oh, about four hundred thousand times.

And of course, I had my perfectly-orchestrated, boilerplate answer all ready to go. Some BS version of, “It feels good to be back in a normal routine again.”

Come on.

Why do I say shit like this? Why can’t I be real for one tiny second in my lousy, pathetic, sleep-deprived, small little life?

NO IT DOES NOT FEEL GOOD.

SCREW YOUR ‘NORMAL’ ROUTINE, BECCA. SCREW IT SO HARD.

image

See, I liked my maternity routine.

It was by far the most challenging year of my life, but for the first time ever, I felt like I was actually doing something meaningful.

For once, I wasn’t just a number–a cog in a machine. My ideas were valid, and my decisions were vital. I had a role, and it was important. I meant something to someone.

What I was doing mattered.

I mattered.

And you know what? I didn’t even mind being up at the crack of dawn most days. In fact, I kind of liked it.

cute baby boy

He’ll make you a believer in mornings, too.

I also liked the playdates, the yoga and swimming lessons. I liked the road trips, the long walks, the picnics in the park and the lazy afternoons in the sun. I liked being there for his first word, his first food, and when he sat up, stood up, and crawled for the first time.

And sure, some additional perks were the frequent naps, comfortable sweatpants and the freedom of going commando on the upper deck–but I earned those. Don’t you dare say I didn’t earn those.

I liked everything about my “abnormal” routine this past year, so screw you–no, screw me–for lying through my teeth like that.

Can I have a do-over?

You be my colleagues and I’ll be me.

the-simpsons-james-woods-im-me

Hey, don’t jerk me around, fella.

COLLEAGUES: How does it feel to be back, Becca?
ME: I’d rather be elbow deep in a smelly mountain of feces than spend another minute staring at this Excel spreadsheet.

Okay, moving on.

I’m grateful for the time I had. And I accept that I have to work.

I also accept that (for now) I’m not in any way, shape or form doing my dream job–which truthfully, makes returning to work even lousier than it already is. Life doesn’t care about your dream job, though, and diapers don’t grow on trees. Perhaps one day, I’ll stop being a cog and start being someone who matters–someone he can be proud of.

Just not today.

Now let’s talk about boobs.

did-somebody-say-boobs

I had it all planned out.

It’ll be fine, I lied to told myself. I’ll just pump at my desk twice a day, every day, et voilà! An endless supply of breast milk for daycare. He’s not quite a year old yet, so this way he won’t have to go on expensive soy formula or transition to dairy before his silly little GI tract can handle it.

Number of days I’ve been back to work: 7
Number of times I’ve pumped at my desk: 0

Stop trying to make pumping happen, Becca. It’s never going to happen.

And you know what? That’s okay. I mean, we’re all down here in the trenches, doing the best we can, basically just making shit up as we go anyway. So what if things don’t work out exactly according to plan?

That’s life, and life sucks sometimes. Maybe just be happy you’re here.

And doesn’t that single, ugly truth sound so much sweeter than a thousand of those beautiful lies?

ode to pizza (a return to dairy poem)

It’s been six long months since I said goodbye
To your ooey gooey coating, my darling pizza pie
Not only you my sweet, but all chocolate and cheese
No soy, cream and butter have brought me to my knees
But to get my boy well, I made a tough call
I put on a brave face, I gave up it all
It won’t be so bad, I thought with a wince
Oh who am I kidding, who’m I trying to convince?
At first there were tears, nearly every single day
How would I carry on? How would I find a way?
There could never be another, no bag of Daiya will do
No amount of coconut product could ever replace you
I thought of you daily, your warm drizzly centre
Your crust, tasty toppings, surely hell did I enter
I wanted to quit, oh I wanted to run
Back into your arms–this diet’s no fun
But I stuck it out, days turned into weeks
Weeks into months, yes count it, you freaks!
The day has finally come, I can’t believe it’s here
I get to hold you once again, I get to have you near.

pizza

in case father’s day still sucks for you

Two years ago, I hastily signed up for a free WordPress blog and wrote down some feelings on Father’s Day.

Because I’m completely unoriginal, I modified a similar blog written by an internet stranger. It was a total one-off, but I probably should have continued it. To my astonishment, WordPress decided to Freshly Press it, and it kind of blew up.

It felt tingly to know that something I wrote resonated with that many people. Sadly–not shockingly–nothing I’ve written since has been recognized by the internet lords, and this probably has something to do with the frequent profanity and tacky internet memes this nonsense blog is saturated with.

(I love each and every one of my 58 followers, thank you).

Many of the feelings I felt then still exist today, two years later. They always will. But thanks to the existence of this 17 pound sack of drool, I have a reason to stop being such an inconsolable ball of hate this year.

liam pool

Father’s Day will never be the same for me, but that’s okay. It was never about me, anyway. I mean if there were a National Grieving Daughter Day, I would probably be leading the charge in the streets as we speak, but mercifully, that will never be a thing.

Today shouldn’t be about grief.

It should be about spending money on things. Things men like, such as power tools he’ll probably toss in the back of the shed later on when you’re in bed and maybe a case of Miller Lite.

Dad bod must be maintained.

Dad bod must be maintained.

Anyway, if you’re still reading this, know that you’re not alone if today still sucks–even after seeing those photos of my adorable baby and Leonardo DiCaprio with a beer belly.

Also know that life gets better sometimes, even when you least deserve it.

Happy Father’s Day.

dad daughter niagara falls

eat your heart out, kit kat

Look, I’m just going to clear the air before I blather on about this super sexual, (relatively) healthy thing I just made.

I’m a glutton. It’s actually quite disgusting.

Chocolate and cheese–in that order–are my two favourite foods, and without them, I would surely perish.

I am in no way being hyperbolic.

chicago deep dish pizza

Me consuming (at a rapid pace) Lou Malnati’s deep dish pizza in Chicago. Very close to being the best day of my life.

Pizza aside, I’ve been known to take down approximately seven pounds of fresh pasta in one sitting.

One time, a bunch of friends and I ordered 16 cheeseburgers from a McDonald’s drivethru at 1am (Captain Obvious’ note: we were not sober).

I’ve also likely spent the equivalent of a year’s tuition on Kit Kat bars.

So imagine my horror when I am told by a pediatric gastroenterologist that in order for me to continue to breastfeed my then 10-week old severely allergic baby, I have to immediately cut out all dairy (and soy) from my diet.

This meant no:

  • milk
  • milk chocolate
  • cheese
  • ice cream
  • butter
  • margarine
  • sour cream

…for as long as I continue to breastfeed. Just to name a few.

dairy free funny

The doctor didn’t think I could do it, and frankly, neither could I. After many a few tears and a lot of research (mercifully, I can still eat eggs, gluten, wheat, nuts, dark chocolate and cocoa), I accepted my temporary fate.

As determined as I was to keep breastfeeding, I was even more determined to find a way to keep consuming chocolate–and I have, in various cake, brownie and cupcake form.

But tonight I was craving a chocolate bar.

Not a brownie, not a cupcake–a real-ass chocolate bar.

Store bought candy bars are a no-no, which is almost as soul-crushing as not being able to sink my teeth into a piping hot cheeseburger or a gooey pizza pie.

I knew there had to be a way. Necessity is the mother of Pinterest invention, after all.

And there was.

What did people do before the internet?

before the internet funny

It took me all of five minutes to find a homemade chocolate bar recipe, and it only called for three ingredients. Three ingredients that I inexplicably already had in my home:

  1. coconut oil
  2. maple syrup
  3. cocoa powder

Not only was it free of all the crap that’s poured into mass produced store-bought candy bars, it was so delicious and easy to make that even after two generous glasses of wine, I am still very much alive and relatively un-poisoned.

chocolate bar home made

Eat your heart out, Kit Kat.

This deserves a third glass of wine!