How to be a sexy mom

I know that I just gave you a confession, but I have something else to admit. I like to let a little bit of my bra show. Sometimes I choose a shade darker than my shirt, or a pattern that peeks through the fabric. Sometimes the lacy edge peeks out from my neckline. It just makes me feel a little bit racy, a little bad, if you know what I mean. Now, you know I’m a mom. Most of the time I am dragging three kids around, from here to there, to school, to piano lessons, to swimming. I often have my one-year old on my arm. More often than not, my hands are sticky from someone’s snack. And that feeling can be annihilating.

But when I know that I caught Geoff’s eye on his way out the door to work, or I feel a guy’s eyes on me (I know, I should be ashamed, I’m married!) I feel a little more alive, a little more me. It helps me get through these mommy years in one piece. It reminds me that being a sexy girl was what got me into this mess in the first place, and that I will one day return to what I was—more or less—a sexy woman with nice clean hands.

Do other moms do this? I definitely haven’t noticed any bits of lace peeking out. But I say go for it! Moms, do your hair and wear your date night shoes on regular days too. Go shopping, alone, for yourself. It feels great.

I do have one friend who tried my advice. She religiously wears sweats. Recently she confided that she did some lingerie shopping, and that she’s been wearing her sexy bras and panties under her sweats. Her husband loves it, and I hear she’s been reaping the benefits.

So, guys, when you see us moms, in our sweats, hair in ponytails, tugging flocks of kids along by the arms, well, you ought to look more closely. Things are not always as they appear. Sometimes, they are a lot more interesting.

Let’s take a risk, shall we?

I like to take risks. Not every day, but every once in a while, I like to just jump into something. I love to wander around a new place, I like to hike a difficult trail even with my kids in tow, I get a rush from challenging someone’s ideas.

Now, if you know me, you know that I am not the type to go off the deep end. You probably would never consider me a risk taker. You’ll just have to trust me, I am.

I just took a quiz that proves it. I take most of my risks in the social sphere, but also quite a lot recreationally. I do wait through the cold months to drag my kids to the wilderness for days on end all summer with the bare minimum of supplies, just to teach them how to slow down and survive. I do count on my body to take on whatever adventure I choose, regardless of my training and ability. Sometimes that gets me into trouble, and I like it that way.

The Wall Street Journal article that referenced the quiz explains that women, commonly thought to be more risk-adverse than men, in reality, do take a lot of risks. It’s true, for me. I am, I think, uniquely able to act on my thoughts and desires. I am out of the workforce right now, by choice, which gives me a certain level of freedom to do as I please. I am not accountable to a boss, other than my family. Really, I feel no pressure to impress anyone right now, which I did for all of my 20s. In the absence of pressure, I can consider my true opinions about things. In most cases, I feel comfortable speaking up about my opinions, politely of course. When I do feel uncomfortable, I’ve come to like the energy burst it gives me.

So why, you might ask, would I consider giving up this freedom, my time with my kids, my ownership of my life to return to the workforce in a new, uncharted capacity? Why, if I am so fortunate to have all that I technically need, do I feel so drawn to reinvent myself at this moment? It’s completely risky. I am investing my time and energy in a project that has no formal description and has no documented endgame. I want to be creative and get paid for it. It’s going to be difficult and demanding and I’m going to love every minute of it. Because I am a risk taker. I’m with 36-year-old Paul Cusma, investment banker and speed junkie, who calls it when he says, “I don’t want to wake up one day and realize I forgot to live my life.”

Thoughts on a Monday morning

Many years ago, I painted something for a boyfriend.

A tree frog on a branch.

Vivid, it popped off the canvas, lifelike.

Nearly the instant I completed it, I gave it to him. Not long after, we parted ways. Almost immediately, I wanted that painting back.

That was a piece of myself.


I’ve carried that anger around for almost 20 years. Just recently, I contacted him, in friendship. I asked for the painting back. You know what?

He sent it.

Professionally wrapped, expensively sent. Clearly, it had been well cared for. I had asked him to mark it in some way, to prove his ownership of it. He neglected to, but I shall do it for him. I have no compunction about messing it up. And I will always know the truth.

And I will love that he returned that piece of myself, intact, pristine but for the passage of time.

Thank you.


Note on my creative process

Sometimes after I read something, it has to sink in for awhile until I understand it.

Sometimes it takes a few days, sometimes a number of weeks, sometimes even years can pass while those words simmer on the back burner of my mind.

Then–suddenly–my thoughts are boiling, sometimes out of the pot.

To Geoff

Happy birthday, Geoff. I’m sorry that you have to share your birthday most years with Mother’s Day — it’s just too bad. Although I like that you were born in early May. It’s just right.

I did all of my usual preparations for your birthday celebration this year. I picked out cards, shopped with the kids for your gifts — you know that I can’t settle on just one — I baked a breakfast cake for you, and I will bake a birthday cake tomorrow. But this year as I prepared, I reflected on how close we came to not making it to another round of birthdays together. Man, we have been through a tough few months. If someone had told me on New Year’s Eve that we twice would have seriously entertained the D-word before May, I would not have believed them. Not in a million years. But, sadly, it’s true.

2013 has tested us, Geoff. But I say, we are strong. You, and you alone, have answered so many questions for me in my life. You’ve done it without trying, often before the question was asked or even thought. I have loved you ever since I’ve been capable of loving someone else. Simply for being you. I began from a place of having no other comparison and needing none. As we got older, I deliberately chose you and you again, always you, because I wanted that legacy, and because I wanted to be that to you.

Now I say we are a team. I think that the past few months have proven that beyond any doubt. We stick together and we protect each other. You are my barometer and you are my bodyguard. I am your sounding board and your travel guide.

Geoff, you don’t have a room in my heart. You are my heart’s wild, unmapped, mostly unexplored exterior. You could never be boarded up, and there is no escaping you.

Thanks for being you, Geoff. I love you.




Hi, readers

I’m blogging again, and I’m pretty happy about it. I am trying to reimagine this blog as one that I’d like anyone who knows me to read. That’s not to say that I won’t present a different face here than I do in day-to-day life, but this time, I’m not going to go too far.

If you read my blog before and I scared you, confused you, or otherwise convoluted our friendship, I am truly sorry. I’d like to repair that damage. If you gave me advice when I needed it, thank you. If you are still reading, I really appreciate that. I am so grateful that I have friends who have known me for so long that they can easily tell when my mind is just slightly out of whack. You guys saved me a lot of pain and difficulty, you really did.

This blog is going to be a place where I explore all aspects of myself — as a mom and wife, as a woman, as an artist and a writer, as a person with opinions. I hope that you will challenge me, and help me explore myself and the world. Maybe I will inspire you to do something new, too. If I do, please let me know. I’d like that a lot.

And now for some revision

Hi everyone,

It’s been a weird couple of weeks. I am feeling clearer, and yet still confused. I am beginning the process of revising what I wrote previously into a state that is fit for the world to see. I think I mentioned this before, but I’d like to make this blog my resume. I want to go back to work, but to do what, I am unsure. I hope you’ll stick around while I figure it out, and offer your insight and guidance for my revisions.


Musings on a boy who I loved once

I had a boyfriend once, long long ago before reality set in. I loved that guy.  I can’t give him an alias. I don’t know him well enough, and I know him too well. His name began with D.

He wouldn’t, couldn’t do something that I asked. He wasn’t mature enough. His revelation felt like rejection to me. From there on out, our relationship was a downward spiral. It’s okay. We were just not ready for each other.

But that rejection started a process for me. I’ll call it closing. For a while I was no good to him, or to myself. We broke up.

It was horrible for me. I had given him a room in my heart. It was a nice comfy room, with sofas and chairs, a game table, lots of windows so the sun could pour in. Friends could come and go whenever they wanted. Books lined shelves on the walls and music was always on. He sang to me. I loved that room. I liked that room. That room was interesting.

Then I felt that to survive, I had to board that room up. The pain of leaving the door open was too much for me to bear. So I went to Home Depot. I bought the lumber, the nails, the hammer with money that I borrowed from Geoff. I rented the truck, and I loaded it myself, all the time cursing and swearing because it was so much work.

I brought the lumber in, and I did the work. I boarded up that beautiful room. I left one little crack, and every once in a while, I went and peeked in. Guy with dark hair and brown eyes from afar at a concert? Oh! A glimpse of the sun through that tiny hole.

Lately, I don’t look through the hole anymore. I didn’t need to once I added three more sunny rooms to my heart. I’ve added a lot of great nooks, too. Ones that I think D. would really like if I worked up the courage to do some more demo work.