gone

So I’ve gone and done it. Become one of the masses of hoards of abandoned “mommyhood” blogs. I didn’t intend to- of course not. So here comes the next cliche- the “promise of more frequent updating”.

It’s not that my source material is any different. I keep having the thoughts: I should write about this, or this would make a great post. First it was my road trip to New Hampshire, then the purchase of a new, ultra-cool minivan (I type that without a trace of irony), I could have also written about my daughter’s complete lack of cooperativity with potty training (I’m writing this staring at her still-cloth-diaper-bottom and grimacing). My solo-parenting-cross-country trip a few weeks ago is full of great potential ancedotes and stories.

But, like many before me, I just haven’t had the motivation. I’m not particularly busier than before; if anything, I’m spending less time writing because I’m spending more time scrolling, a habit I am desperate to quit. When I started this blog I had a cuddly little newborn, a hazy sense of time and the hormones made sitting and reflecting just easier.

So I’m going to fight my slacker status and aim to update at least twice a week. We are in the dead heat of summer, that time of year when I look at my tanned, blonde children and wonder if their browned skin is the sign of healthy outdoorsy kids or if I’m harming them and subjecting them to skin cancer. The days are long, sticky, there is so much to do this time of year and yet I also find it the most frustrating (it’s too damn hot!). I’m going to focus on just writing, pushing the words out, and worry less about what the reader thinks (I get terribly shy when it comes to people I personally know reading my words).

So – here it is. My “Coming Back” post. Hopefully it’s not the final update I ever give and you, the reader, aren’t reading it as my “most recent post” in the year 2019. If it is 2019 and you are reading this as the newest post, do me a favor, please, track me down and kick my butt. I’ll probably be looking down at my iphone 9 scrolling through Instagram. I’ll deserve the butt kicking. Thanks!

happy sad-a-versary

Two years ago I made a decision that changed my life forever.

I know you’re supposed to “live life with no regrets” and “don’t look back” and “everything happens for a reason”, but, this decision I made is something I have thought about pretty much every day since then- that’s 730 days I’ve played the same refrain in my mind, over and over.

See, two years ago today, (and I know this because of my Timehop App— thanks social media) I boarded my airline, the one I worked for, with my little boy. We were headed to my parent’s house for Christmas. I was 32 weeks pregnant. I had a job I loved, a new baby on the way, my husband was working at his “major” airline (a step up from the regional world). Things were great.

I sat on that airplane and watched my co-workers, the flight crew, work their asses off. Christmas time is a tough time to be a flight attendant. People bring all their issues with them onto the plane and tend to drink. Plus, most passengers during the holidays are not “seasoned”, ie, they really don’t know what they are doing.

On that particular flight, I witnessed a “service animal” bark incessantly throughout the cabin service, an angry man behind my bitch about the overhead bin space for a great majority of the flight, and some woman overdrink to the point of puking in her seat. And guess who cleaned the vomit up? Not her—- that’s right, the friendly in-flight staff.

Sitting there, rubbing my round ball of a belly, I thought, “I think I’m done”.

My old airline offered an annual buyout to their flight attendants. They called it the “Career Choice”. IE- this ain’t a career, go get a real one. Beyond the offensive title, it came with $10,000 and three years of travel privileges if you decided to quit your job. Every year I thought about taking it, but never did.

But two years ago, I felt ready.

I got off that flight really thinking I’d take the buyout. The deadline to opt in was only two days away.

I fretted, cried, discussed, argued, and obsessed over this decision the next two days. After much thought and consideration, I opted in.

I knew my new baby would take up a lot of time, and I wanted to breastfeed her exclusively for at least a year. The airline expected new moms to return to work after about 4 months off – that’s what I’d done with my older son, but I figured this round, this baby, I’d fully commit to it.

So, yeah. Since then I’ve had two babies. My husband is still working, supporting us. My life is a lot more quiet. I have dreams where I’m still employed at my airline, and I’m walking through a terminal, or headquarters, waving and talking to all the wonderful people I used to call co-workers. I often wake from these dreams crying. Seriously. My husband still finds it bizarre I have so much love for a place of employment. He honestly doesn’t understand.

When I was a flight attendant, I was at ease. My best self. I loved my job. Loved it. This huge part of my self-identity is gone now. I mourn it all the time.

I realize just yesterday I posted about how I love being a “mom” and being my kid’s world, and this is still true. But — the thing about the airline world is — it’s not exactly easy to get back into it. I tried last year before I knew I was pregnant with H. I made it to the final rounds at two different major airlines but they both passed on me. I think my primary mistake was my honesty. I shouldn’t have talked about my kids, my pilot husband. In five years after all the kids are in school I plan to enter the airline job market again and this time, I’m taking my wedding ring off and going to spin a yarn about quitting due to working on my writing. It’s sort of true.

So, anyway, this day is mixed for me. I’ve gained so much since then in my family – my marriage is better than it ever was after a pretty rough 2015 – and I’m extremely grateful to be able to stay home with my babies, but a part of me will always look back at this date as the day I gave up the dream.

top 5 reasons I’m a terrible mom blogger 

  1. I don’t ever make lists 
  2. I don’t have a “niche”
  3. I have no unique expertise on parenting, except for flying standby with kids. That I know something about
  4. I spend more time envying other moms rather than being envied (or presenting myself in an enviable way)
  5. I think I’m far too self-conscious to self-promote in the way other more successful mommy blogs do. 

This is all to say, I follow tons of awesome mom blogs. This little project I’ve been writing in for two months has opened a new world to me- I even joined Twitter after avoiding it for nearly a decade. I have read some amazing blogs, from women I relate to and even admire, but (especially on Twitter) there is also a whole other subculture of the mommy blogging world I don’t really understand, or get.

Like, the blogs of moms just doing sponsored posts.

Or the lists.

I mean, I get it why lists are important and prevalent. BuzzFeed and other clickbait sites have trained us all to connect and grow curious whenever there’s a “top 5” or “7 most” or “6 things” in a blog title. I’m far more likely to read something from Twitter if it’s presented in that way. But a lot of times these lists just seem forced and I think a straight form blog post would do just as well, but because lists are the way to go everyone has to post in that way.

Just like TL:DR I find it sort of a depressing way to write. (TL DR being short speak for “too long, didn’t read” because apparently reading something over 300 words is too much work for people. Of course, many of you may know that expression, but I just learned it a few months ago through FB Groups. Another quick gripe? Why do people apologize for writing long posts on FB? If you’re writing something worth reading the longer the better as far as I’m concerned. But now this long rant in parenthesis can end).

I’m not even sure exactly what I’m aiming for as my blog’s message or theme. The name suggests an angsty teenager longing to escape her boring life, and while I am sometimes that girl and can’t believe how normal and conventional I’ve become in motherhood, I also just liked the way it sounded.

I’m the world’s worst self-promoter and honestly when I share my latest post through Twitter I just feel like a phony. I’ve always written very privately and begging people to read my thoughts is super unnatural to me.

That said, I do love it when people like my posts or better yet comment on them. I get a thrill when I get a notification of a new follower. It’s awesome – an awesome feeling and even though this blog has only been a habit for 2 months, I love it. I really do.

I am writing just to write. I don’t have goals beyond trying to sharpen this skill, writing, and being that I write about my life and my life in currently revolving around diapers and breastfeeding and kids and tantrums it just seems like calling the blog a “mom blog” is appropriate. And thus, I conclude this post with the hashtag #momlife. 🙂