The Prisoner Gets Furlough

Dawn Michaelfriendship, self care2 Comments

My life is full of endless responsibilities.  I play advocate, parent, wife, daughter, friend, and colleague, always morphing from one role to the next.  It takes concentrated effort to pull this off.  Someone always needs me for something, “Where are my gym socks?  Hey, can you take a peak at my eye?  Did you stop at Target for juice boxes and sandwich bags?  Did you sign my permission slip?”  As fellow moms, you can probably all relate.  Though grateful for the wonderful people in my life, I sometimes feel like a prisoner. It’s so freeing to give up those roles and just be me.  I crave that respite from my daily life.  I try to emmulate our book, “Conscious Unparenting” by placing my needs at least at the same level with everyone else’s.  In fact this weekend, I put myself first.  I let my husband take over my role of chauffeur, church goer, and frozen yogurt connoisseur!  I escaped to the Cranwell Resort and Spa in the Berkshires with four wonderful friends.  It took a lot of planning and money to make this happen, but the results were pure bliss!  After a weekend of shopping, eating, drinking, and relaxing, I was able to reconnnect with who I am.  I mattered.  My effortless existence allowed me to stay focused.  I wasn’t … Read More

Karma’s a Real Bitch

Kim Kinziehumor, Medical issues1 Comment

Last week I publicly mocked my husband for the extreme paranoia he exhibits every time our kids get the sniffles. A mere four days after posting that article, the tables have been turned and it’s my turn to be mocked. My five year old woke up in the middle of the night crying that his penis hurt. He actually pointed to the upper left side of his genital area, as opposed to the actual penis. I did a visual check, felt around and, after finding nothing, I changed his nighttime diaper and coaxed him back to sleep. I wouldn’t have been concerned except this was the third time this has happened…in less than 2 weeks. I decided to call the doctor. When I spoke to the receptionist, I admit I felt rather foolish when she asked what was wrong. “Do you think I should bring him in?” “Oh definitely” she responded so I made an appointment for later that afternoon. Throughout the morning, visions of twisted testicles and complicated medical procedures filled my brain. Could he have prostate cancer or a hernia? Does he even have a prostate yet? Why did she say “Oh definitely???” Dear God, what’s wrong with my little boy??? When we arrived I explained the reason for our visit to the nurse, as she continued to … Read More

The Go-Gos Would Never Sing a Song About THIS…

Dawn MichaelADHD, our book, self careLeave a Comment

For those of you who haven’t had a chance to get the book, here’s an excerpt from my chapter called,”You Call This a Vacation???” It takes place in 2013 at Loon Mountain in NH. Foolishly, we had decided to take the kids skiing. Here’s what ensued when we signed them up for lessons. Hope you enjoy! We got to the mountain and made our way over to the ski school corral. I put the girls in level two classes and my son in level three with his buddies. My friends and I kissed our kids goodbye and skied away. I felt the familiar sensation of exhilaration I always felt when I finally get some time to myself – one you can only feel when you’ve also experienced deprivation. As a working mom, my time away from my kids is mostly when I’m at work, so when I get some actual time to myself, it’s positively delicious – like the first glass of wine after nine long months of pregnancy, an unexpected warm day in the middle of winter or eating that chocolate Easter bunny after giving up candy for Lent. Yeah, it’s that good. I hit the mountain and slowly re-acclimated to the swaying and balancing that comes with skiing while the sun shone on my face. I was so … Read More

To the Doctor, Stat!

Kim KinzieUncategorized1 Comment

“I’d take him to the doctor.” These are my husband’s favorite words for any sort of ailment my sons experience. If they get a cold, he listens intently to their chest as they cough. “Sounds croupy to me. I’d take him to the doctor.” My older son has a sensitive stomach and has puked – on more than one occasion -after eating mounds of junk food followed by a go on the tire swing. “He pukes a lot. I’d take him to the doctor.” My younger son is a bit of behavioral challenge; no red flags – just very strong-willed and defiant. After each tantrum, my husband stares at me in disbelief that a five year old could wreak such havoc on a household. “This isn’t normal. I’d take him to the doctor.” My favorite incident happened last night. My little guy just started swim lessons and complained that his foot hurt. When I took a look, I saw a few bumps that were tender to the touch. My mom diagnosis: warts. I decided to get a second opinion and asked my husband to take a look. His eyes bugged out of his head. “I don’t know,” he muttered. “I don’t even want to say what those look like.” Then he made some underhanded reference to a parasitic infection, shaking … Read More

Tag- You’re It!

Dawn Michaelour bookLeave a Comment

Three years of hard work and it was finally here-our first book signing!  Longing to present my best self, I went to the mall two days before the event to scout a new outfit.  I didn’t have much time, so my mission had to be quick.  I checked out the fabulous tendy jeans, complete with shredded rips up and down the legs.  The sizes confused me- they were all European.  Just as a salesperson asked if I needed some help, I noticed the price tag- $239!  My measly budget of $50 didn’t come close.  Dejected, I headed off to accessories.  Surely I could afford something to update my look.  I spotted a fun, tie-dye blue headband – perfect for our book’s 1970’s theme!  I hit the cosmetic department last and overspent on a fabulous orange lipstick called, “Mischa.”  I was ready! The day of the book signing, I was able to leisurely shower, dress, and primp.  I even applied clear nail polish to my chewed fingernails.  I met Kim for lunch, where we indulged in a glass of wine and teeth friendly food (no spinach).  We reviewed what excerpts we’d read and how we’d sign our name -cursive writing with a whimsical comment.  We were prepared. Slightly anxious, we got to Symposium Books in plenty of time for the reading. … Read More

The Battle of the Screens Part II

Kim KinzieScreen Time, self care1 Comment

Last week I pledged to attempt a four-hour car ride with kids, minus electronics. I kept to my pledge. I didn’t break the news to my children until we got in the car and my 8 year old asked for his Kindle, so I told him about our plan. “But you said we could have our Kindles on any car ride that’s more than an hour. You said…” (Both kids got Kindles for Christmas…I know, I’m a douche bag for giving a Kindle to a 5 year old. Sue me). I truly hate when my own rules are thrown back in my face. “I know that’s the rule, but we’re going to try something different today. It will be fun.” “Can we play that alphabet game?” I assured him that we’d play as soon as we hit the highway. He seemed to settle down. The 5 year-old, bless his heart, was too clueless to realize the severity of the situation and remained mute. Two minutes into the alphabet game, I was on the letter “C” and my son hadn’t passed “A.” Frustrated he quit. We were 5 minutes into our ride. This was going to be one long day. Eventually he picked up his papers and pencils and started drawing, while the younger one began asking for his Kindle. I … Read More

Seeking Quiet

Dawn Michaelself care1 Comment

I find life pretty hectic.  I chuckle when I think of my parents “going for coffee.”  Imagine, lingering over one cup!  My cup of joe is always on the run from the nearest drive-thru. I often view my life as a merry-go-round- hang on tight or I’ll fly off the horse!  Desperately, I latch onto the painted pastel seat, harness dangling off to the side. So, I wondered what I could do to bring about change to my precarious lifestyle?  Besides drinking red wine, I decided to explore the world of meditation-conscious relaxation!  Sounded simple enough-merely  find a quiet place to “just be.”  I thought I’d allow 10-15 minutes to begin my practice.  I waited until the girls left for school-how would I calm down after their incessant arguing?!! “That’s my headband and you can’t wear it!” “Well, you wore my sweatshirt yesterday!”  “The bus!!!!,” I screamed  like a mad woman.  My ah moment happened when their backs faced me as they crossed the icy terrain of our driveway.  Feeling like a PTSD victim, I ambled  to the couch trying to embrace the calm that awaited me.  I grabbed  my “touchy-feely” CD and began breathing.  In, sat, out, nam.  I circled my neck.  So far, so good.  Then the chatter began,  “Whose picking my son up from school?  Did I … Read More