Category Archives: fortunate mama


Mike took Dylan to Costco over the weekend, and on the way, Dylan asked Mike what his job was.  Mike explained that he was a reporter and a project manager.  Dylan’s priceless response was, “Do you fix things?”  Next, Dylan asked what my job was?  Mike said, “Mommy’s job is taking care of you, your brother and the household.”  (Why does it always sting a little bit to hear this basically true statement out loud?) Dylan’s response was, “Mommy’s job is cooking.”  (By the way, I’m so glad he said cooking instead of doing laundry.  I actually enjoy cooking.)  And then this was the best part.  Dylan said, “Mommy’s job is everything.”  This is quite possibly the best job description for a mother that I’ve ever heard.

I don’t actually do everything, but it often feels like it, and it’s one of the reasons I haven’t rushed back into the (paid) workforce yet.  I feel like I’ve been living inside an episode of the Wonder Pets for nearly three years, so it’s hard to imagine having the capacity to be responsible for or accountable to anyone besides my two children (and husband and dog).  On top of that, I don’t want to become a Caught in the Middle Mama again.  Been there.  Done that.  And then there’s the fear – fear of failure, fear of taking on too much and fear of, well, everything.  It’s one thing to want everything, but it’s another thing to have it all on one plate.

Even with all of this apprehension, I’ve been very discreetly doing something totally and completely HUGE.  I’ve started working.  I’m doing freelance public relations (what I used to do), and I’m getting paid (gasp!).  This is what I was referring to in my blog birthday post when I said I was taking baby steps outside of my cozy mommy bubble.

 As I’ve stated (and demonstrated) before, stay-at-home mamahood can be a nerve-racking, hair-raising experience, but no matter how crazy it gets, it’s still a different animal than work.  Combining the two takes courage and patience (and good friends and plenty of Pino Grigio), and balancing them must be done delicately.  Baby steps, indeed.  I’m working from home, making my own hours, earning some money and still “cooking.”  I’m a Fortunate Mama tiptoeing very slowly toward…everything. 

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On Saturday morning, a bird pooped on my head through the sunroof of my car while I was driving. Apparently this is a sign of good luck. So is rain on your wedding day. That happened to me, too. Wearing your clothing inside out is another sign of luck. Yes, I’ve done that as well. I recently came home from Old Navy with my shirt on inside out. I got in and out of the dressing room so quickly – probably a result of shopaholic guilt – that I didn’t notice the tags of my shirt flapping in the wind.

I watched an Oprah show once where she talked about the word “luck” and how she didn’t like it. She said luck is something that happens that has nothing to do with you. Maybe winning the lottery is luck, but when you get a breakthrough role that makes you a star or you have kids who say please and thank you, it’s not because you’re lucky. It’s because you worked hard to achieve something. You made it (whatever it is) happen. You are not merely lucky. You are fortunate.

And if you’re lucky enough to be fortunate, you should be grateful. (This is me talking now, not Oprah, although I think she would agree.) Since Thanksgiving is only a few days away, I thought it would be fitting to jot down a few things I’m grateful for this year.

·I’m grateful I keep baby wipes in my car so I can quickly clean up sticky fingers or bird poop on my head.

·I’m grateful for my perfectly imperfect husband. Nothing is certain, but I have a feeling we’ll grow old and cranky together.

·I’m grateful Dylan is no longer sleeping on an aerobed in a tent on the floor. I’m also grateful for the Ikea bed tent that helped motivate him to make the change.

·I’m grateful Dylan can finally say “popcorn” instead of “pah-corn” and “planet” instead of “planek,” although I’m sure he says “planek” just to drive me crazy. Words to tackle next are “com-pee-ter” (computer), “glub” (glove) and “mem-bor-ee” (memory).

·I’m grateful for any morning Riley sleeps past 5:30am, and I’m grateful that turning him upside-down can turn almost any crying into smiling.

·I’m grateful Harry still cuddles up and sleeps against my back every night even though his canine status often puts him at the back of the line for, well, everything.

·I’m grateful for The Runaway Mama. It has changed my life.

·I’m grateful for Saturday night babysitters and sushi.

I’ve kept a gratitude journal for many years. I’ve been lazy (very lazy) about writing in it recently, but I love going back and reading what I wrote years ago. There was a period of time in 2002 or 2003 when every Wednesday night Mike and I would eat sushi take-out for dinner, and every Wednesday night I would write in my journal that I was grateful for sushi. I’m fortunate (and grateful, too) that some things never change.

What are you grateful for this year?

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