On How Not to Disappear

I had a funny post lined up for today. But my heart has been on my yoga mat since Monday morning. I wrote this letter to my yoga instructor on Monday night, and I keep coming back to it…feeling like it’s a post.

Ang,

What’s the easiest thing for you to do once you’re a Mom?

Disappear.

I woke up this morning before 6. My husband had already left for work for the day.

I tiptoed downstairs and packed the kids’ snacks and lunches. I laid out their uniforms for school.

I woke each of them with gentle kisses and a quiet voice because loud, impatient voices put me on edge.

By the time they got to the table, each boys’ favorite breakfast was sitting at his spot.

I helped my 4 year old pull his shirt over his head, but only a little bit, because he likes to do it all by himself.

I told my 7 year old I was proud of him because he got himself dressed without needing any reminders.

I remembered to put my 9 year old’s medicine next to his plate.

When my 11 year old followed me into the laundry room, I listened to him complain quietly about his 9 year old brother and, instead of reprimanding him for complaining about his brother, I applauded his discretion and reminded me he can always come to me to vent.

I realized I had done everyone’s laundry but mine. So I strung together a multitude of curses as I picked through my clothes to find some pants for yoga. I whispered the curses instead of saying them aloud.

I drove the boys to school and could barely concentrate over the sound of my 4 year old screaming that he wanted me to “TURN AROUND AND GO HOME! I NEED MY WOOBIE SO I CAN SUCK MY THUMB!”  I did not drive home to get his blanket. I did not scream at him. I did not bang my head repeatedly against the steering wheel in protest…but I wanted to.

Instead I dried his tears. And I carried that 4 year old boy into school. For lots of reasons. But mostly because he asked me to.  And because I still can.

I drove 30 minutes out of my way to go to Costco so that I could buy 10 lbs of chicken. Who buys 10 lbs of chicken?  I did today. Because my 11 year old competes in Reading Olympics, and tomorrow it’s our turn to provide lunch for 15 fifth grade boys. He is obsessed with buffalo wings at the moment. But wings don’t travel well. So, I told him I’d make buffalo chicken sandwiches. I’ll be shredding that shit forever. It’s a bunch of work. But I’m doing this for my 11 year old because this is his love language. He isn’t overly affectionate. He’s guarded. But, it will make him feel loved and proud when he shares his favorite meal with his friends.

I swung by the pediatrician’s office to pick up my 9 year old’s prescription refill. I made an appointment for him to be weighed because this medication is an appetite suppressant. I had a fleeting moment of sadness that my beautiful child has inherited an attention disorder. And that the changes in diet and the behavioral modifications weren’t the answers. Then I remembered what an attention disorder looks like for an adult who isn’t medicated. It looks like more work than you ever thought you’d have to give to your marriage, to your job, to your friendships…and still coming up short. It looks like a lifetime of regrets. It looks like severe depression. Then I felt better about giving my son that medicine. Because we are giving him a chance at a better outcome than that. And my boy deserves that chance. Doesn’t everyone?

I dropped that prescription off at the pharmacy.

I rolled my windows down as I drove because today was a glorious day and I wanted to experience every ounce of its glory. My papers flew all over the minivan…the 9 year old minivan that is making an alarming humming noise but has to last us for 1 more year…but I didn’t care. I kept the windows down anyway. And I turned the radio up. And I sang.

I showered quickly, then cleaned and sliced 7 lbs of strawberries. Also for Reading Olympics. These boys eat like fucking kings.

I grabbed 4 water bottles, a vat of Goldfish, 3 lacrosse sticks, a frisbee, a basketball, and a football. I threw them all into the car and drove to pick up the kids from school.

My 9 year old had robotics class after school, but he forgot. When I reminded him, he got tears in his eyes and was disappointed that he’d forgotten…and worried that he’d miss something. I put my arm around him, and reassured my sensitive boy that the class hadn’t started yet. I took my 7 year old’s hand and pointed my 9 year old to his robotics teacher.

I hung by the monkey bars while my 7 year old showed me for the very first time that he is strong enough and brave enough to navigate them. Nothing comes naturally for him except for his smile. He has to work harder than all of his brothers. It makes me worry more about him. But it makes me love him with a ferocity that I reserve only for him. When he showed me that he could climb across those monkey bars, I wanted to cry. I wanted to jump up and down and lift him up and scream to everyone there, “do you know how hard he has worked for this? Do you know about his low muscle tone? And the occupational and physical therapy he’s endured to get to this point?” But I didn’t. I choked back my tears. I opened my arms. He flashed me that smile, then he leaned into my embrace. I whispered, “I’m proud of how hard you worked to climb across those monkey bars. I love to watch you climb.” I chose my words carefully because I’ve read books that suggest I should reward my kids’ effort, not their achievements.

When really I just wanted to say, “Nobody has ever loved anyone in the history of the entire world as much as I love you.”

on how not to disappear

I played tag with my 4 year old. I rolled up his pants because he was hot. I swept his hair off his head. I kissed the white scar that stood out prominently against his pink cheeks.

I let my 11 year old hang out inside school with a friend of his because he claimed it was too hot outside. It was a big deal to him that I trusted him to act responsibly, and it made me happy that he indeed acted responsibly.

I sat on a bench at the playground with a woman who is painfully shy and an absolute comedic genius. She is a dear friend. I laughed with her, and we watched our boys together, and we marveled at their friendships and their limbs growing longer, and the feel of the sun on our faces.

I collected my boys and all of their backpacks, and we drove home.

I stood at the counter to eat my dinner while I put their dinners on plates and listened to them laughing with their father. I was just distracted enough not to know what they laughed about, but tuned in just enough to appreciate the sound of their laughter.

I layered 7 lbs of chicken between two crockpots, slathered it in buffalo sauce, and topped it off with powdered ranch dressing.

I kissed each of them goodbye and drove back to their school…for the third time today…to listen to my 11 year old’s science teacher talk to the 5th grade parents about how he will approach sex education with our boys in the coming weeks. I decided I should tell my oldest son about my period…because I know this boy, and he hates to feel like he’s the last one to know something. If it comes as a surprise to him in class, he’ll be frustrated. I started to get distracted thinking about how I would explain it to him. But I caught myself and reminded myself to listen to my son’s teacher. And I’m glad I did, because I felt lucky. He talked about what a privilege it is to be a part of something so important in our boys’ lives. While he spoke, I looked around his room, and was surprised to find a snake slithering around in its cage a mere 2 feet behind my head. It freaked me out a touch, but mostly I felt lucky again. My kids dig snakes. And this is their science classroom. And there’s a snake in here. And that is sweet. And, speaking of snakes, can’t my son’s science teacher just tell them that their penises could fall off if they catch an STD? Because that’s the approach I’m considering taking with him.

I stopped at the Acme on my way home. Because I told my oldest son I’d make homemade ranch dressing to go with his buffalo chicken sandwiches. Because there is nothing like homemade ranch dressing. I threw in some green grapes as well. To go with the strawberries. Yes, for the fucking Reading Olympics.

I got home and went straight into the kitchen. I finished the dinner dishes, packed the lunches and snacks for tomorrow, and sifted the flour and cocoa for my 11 year old’s favorite cake. Because he also requested his favorite cake for dessert at tomorrow’s…wait for it…Reading Olympics. In the hopes of licking the bowl, he joined me in the kitchen while I put the cake together. I told him then about how a girl gets her period, and he told me for the millionth time how glad he is to be a boy. His 9 year old brother joined us, and he told funny stories about robotics today. He does killer impressions, and we laughed at the ones he did for us. He was particularly wound up because he too licked the bowl from the cake. The two of them made ridiculous faces at each other and laughed in a way that I remember doing with my siblings when we were kids. A way that I still do with them now. And I thought about how happy I am that my sons have one another like we have one other. And how, even though the morning started with my oldest annoyed at his brother, the night is ending with the two of them doubled over with laughter at jokes only siblings can truly appreciate.

I kissed them goodnight, shredded the chicken FOREVA, checked the cake with a toothpick, and finally sat down to write. I should be writing a piece for my blog. But I felt so compelled to write to you.

I am way behind on my blog. I had hoped to have a book chapter to my agent this week. A holy-shit-you-nailed-this-one-Bethany funny one. The laundry is piling up so much that I have to smell it to decipher the clean from the dirty. And I live with 5 guys, so that is unspeakably nasty. The Easter baskets are still sitting on the kitchen counter. There are Christmas decorations laying on the floor in my kids’ rooms, still waiting for me to walk them upstairs to the attic. My parents are coming home from FL tomorrow. They’ve been gone for 3 months, and my Mom asked me to have some things in their refrigerator for them. I owe my son’s psychologist an email. I owe my niece a birthday gift. I have to ship my nephew’s gift…2 months late…to Arizona. I owe my Mom a birthday gift…3 months late. We put our cat down last month, and I want to write a thank you note to the hospital for being so incredibly lovely to us and so gentle with him in his last hours.

I really considered not going to yoga this morning because my cup is overflowing so fucking much I can’t see straight. It’s so far beyond overflowing. It’s like a fucking geyser.

As my friend Nina says, these are first world problems.  First world problems. But my life, like most lives, isn’t without its problems.

Every minute of my day today was about someone else. Every single minute. Virtually every thought. Except for the time that I spent on my mat. I was present for my practice. I made an effort to take my warrior pose a little deeper in my front leg. And my legs are still shaky because of it. Instead of doing a regular handstand, I decided to push myself and revisit an attempt at the bad-ass one armed handstand. And my shoulder shook with the effort, but I heard your voice in my head saying, “shaking is good”, so I stuck with it.

The stress that I felt running up those stairs to class clutching a child’s navy blue golf shirt in lieu of a towel was gone by the time our class had ended.

My To Do List was just as long.

Time was moving just as quickly.

But my attitude was entirely different.

I floated through the remainder of the day with a sense of calm and thankfulness.

I still feel it now. At midnight. As I prepare to throw the remaining 3 lbs of chicken into the crockpot to cook overnight.

The people under my roof rely on me desperately. And I don’t want to let them down. I want to be available to them in whatever capacity they need me. It’s easy to forget about what’s important for me when I feel the pull of so many things they need.

What’s the easiest thing for you to do once you’re a Mom?

Disappear.

But today I didn’t get lost.

I didn’t disappear.

I didn’t forget about me.

I willingly took a break from the madness.

I felt full of gratitude today.

Because of yoga.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Ang.  For being my spiritual bartender and introducing me to this amazing practice. For holding my hand in some spots. And knowing when to let go in others.  It is exactly what I need to anchor me during this, the busiest time of my life. At a time when so much of my life is about everyone but me.

My version of leaning in. Or maybe leaning over.

My version of leaning in. Or maybe leaning over.

XO, Namaste, and all that good stuff,

Bethany

62 thoughts on “On How Not to Disappear

  1. That is a lot in this day you’ve described, which I know is really just a sliver of a week, making it that much more relentless. Though I have 3 girls, much of what you said was very familiar. It sometimes feels as if I am leaping from one slippery, mossy, unstable stone to the next and as I land on each one I perform nearly impossible feats. Some days I can feel the shakiness more than others.

    I say gently, and with the compassion of still needing to hear these words myself, sometimes it can be a real gift when you say, “Not this time.” I think us moms of more than 2 try so hard to make sure that everyone gets their share, that each child gets to be in the spotlight, we often portray a person who has not limit to what they can do, or, as you say, we disappear. They should get to see you be you, they’d probably love it.

    Hope that was ok to say. Love to you and omfg so envious of your one armed move.

    • Oh, Amanda, if there is one thing I need, it’s to learn to say “not this time” more often. Also, I’m a middle child, so I have this need not to let anyone down. Top it with my old Catholic school guilt, and we have a recipe for Mom who performs like a circus clown. You know how I love your imagery so…and the leaping from mossy stones is no exception. Bingo. Boom. That. Thanks for reading and for your perfect reminder. XO

  2. Love this, Bethany. So true. With just one child, and a husband who works a lot, I feel overwhelmed at times and have little time to myself. But wouldn’t want it any other way. I can’t even imagine multiplying it by four. However, I can tell your family is your world. I love that!

    • Sometimes I think having one is harder than having more than one…it was for me because I put so much pressure on myself to do everything and be everything and capture every moment. With more than one child, you have a built in excuse. There’s no “just one child”. You are in it, sister.

  3. I am exhausted. All I did was sit here reading this, and I am exhausted. Of course in the past hour I have run Braydon to the potty at least 4 times. (We are potty training him which as you might recall means that I am constantly watching him and acticipating that he needs to use the toilet while he watches “Hotel Transylvania”). In between running him to the bathroom, washing his hands, my hands and changing his underwear because he didn’t quite have it pulled down far enough, I have filled a little bowl with cheerios and given him a cup of apple juice beacause apparently it is exhausting for him to be dragged to the toilet and back. Then I have to constantly start this movie on the dvd player because he may/may not have missed a part of a movie that he has seen dozens of times. But, as I sit here and drink my now cold “hot” tea, I am cheered up by reading your wonderful blog post. Thanks for the laughs.

    • Oh, the potty training. I had them run around naked from the waist down with boys 2, 3, and 4. Because of the additional laundry it created with #1. Enjoy! Good luck! And thanks for reading!

      • Thought about the “naked time”….Just when you thing you are done all of this, guess what happens? Grandkids. See what you have to look forward to. Well, except for the potty patrol, I wouldn’t miss it for the world.

  4. Wonderful! Disappearing is way too easy. I feel like I disappear for weeks, sometimes months at a time. Your boys are so unbelievably lucky and blessed to have you as their mom. I was tearing up at your attention to and love of your boys and their individuality. I strive to do that and find some days harder than others. You are an inspiration. Great post. I have been struggling with some posts myself and hope to get back into it, because writing-like yoga and zumba- helps me NOT to disappear! Thanks for this post, as always you knock it outta the park!

    • Michelle, I have probably 6 pieces that I’m half finished. I kept coming back to this one though. It’s a snapshot of my life this week. It reminds me to remember me. Thanks so much for reading! XO

    • I owe you an email!!! And new comments on your posts! You are my hero for getting the dogs!!! I bow down, woman. XO

  5. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this! Especially the part about the monkey bars – my six year old conquered them last week after years of physical and occupational therapy…I cried and hugged him and whispered how proud I was. Then I cried again when I read this. You have such a talent, I hope you never stop writing.

    Oh, and I’m going back to Yoga today, right after I drop off party invitations, finish stripping a door frame, priming a window casing, chaperone a field trip, hit Costco and pray I get out of there for under $200, put chicken in the crockpot, start the washer for the 2nd time because for the 2nd day in a row I didn’t switch the laundry and you can smell the mildew smell from the hall, and so it goes…Namaste

    • OMG. We are leading parallel lives. Screw the crockpot and get the rotisserie chicken when you’re at Costco! Best damn bird around. And for $5…Holla! The two crockpots that I used for the buffalo chicken sandwiches are still sitting on my kitchen counter. Haven’t been washed yet. I am afraid to crack the lids and smell what’s doing in there. 3 days later. The only thing that smells worse is my laundry room. This morning, before my run, I had to smell the crotches of my dirty running tights to see which was the least offensive among them. So that I could run in them. Don’t do this at home, kids. Thank you so much for reading and commenting, and Namaste!

  6. I have been a reader since your 50 Shades of Motherhood post, but never a commenter. I have since gone back and read your entire blog and every few days when I click on the toolbar bookmark that brings me here directly, I get a huge smile when I discover a new post. I have two little boys, 16 months apart, and hope to add to our family again soon. I just have this feeling that I’m meant to be a boy mom and your posts resonate with me every single time. But this one, for some reason this one led me to comment. I always wait to read your posts when I am alone. I wait until everyone is napping, or running errands, or asleep at night. You are my yoga mat…and I am grateful! Thank you for sharing your world…I am forever a fan.

    • Lindsay!!! This is just the greatest comment ever! Thank you so much! Yeah, 16 months apart is a tough first couple years. My older two are 19 months apart. It’s the greatest thing ever once you get past those first two years. Best of luck to you growing your family…I was just telling my husband how sad it makes me that we won’t ever have that excitement and hope of bringing a new baby home again. I know I’m done. I don’t want to go through it all again. But the magic of it is intoxicating. Thank you so much for your kind words and for reading.

  7. Oh no, I skipped yoga this morning to disappear a little more so I am reading this and thinking….it would have been more important to go to yoga. For me. But probably not for the everyone else.
    Tomorrow. No excuses.
    Thanks for a great post, I cried almost the whole way through….ok, gymnastics is over….Gotta collect my kid and move on with the list.
    Jill

    • Jill, I will have one of those days next week! Maybe two! And in the coming weeks as the field trips and class parties fill my calendar. And I’ll remind myself I’m lucky because my kids are healthy and thriving and I’m in a position to spend time with them when others are not so fortunate. But I will feel a pang of irritation that I’m doing for others and not for myself. XO

  8. Absolutely beautiful! Thank you for this as it is a reminder to stay present in all that we do. Life is really about the process rather than the end goal! Namaste!

    • Jodi, being present in all that I do has been a struggle for me for as long as I can remember. Yoga has been the one thing that’s changed that for me. And it’s finally spilling over into the nooks and crannies of my life off my mat. Thank you so much for reading. Namaste.

  9. I. Love. This. Post. Bethany, thank you, thank you – I know the feeling of everything in my life being about (and for) someone else, and I know the resentment that that can feed. Thanks for inspiring me not to let that happen. xox

    • Lindsey, it’s amazing because it all comes from a place of love. But it can absolutely erode my happiness over time to continue to give and overextend for everyone else without remembering to make myself a priority. Cue the resentment. And not to feel like I’m being selfish when I do take time for me. Cue the Catholic guilt.

      Thank you for reading, my friend. XO

  10. Bethany-as usual, great blog! This one particularly resonated with me as I have been trying to put a finger on what I have been feeling recently and disappeared is exactly it! I hope that as you have I can find a good outlet to find me again! Amazing job with the one arm handstand! And I every time I read your blog it amazes me how you stay sane, But I do get some great laughs!

    • Sane is a relative term in my house. I’m the sanest of the group, but it’s not saying anything once you’ve met my husband. But thank you! It becomes easier and easier to disappear once you add another baby to the mix, which you’ve done. Slipping away little by little. It’s a slippery slope, and I’ve fallen victim to it. Bust out of it, girlfriend. Do something for you! XO

  11. Thank you.
    My list these days, despite an empty house where I can easily disappear is as long as it ever was. The chores-to-do weigh so heavy on my mind that I can’t sleep, and the schedule is locked so tight there’s little time for me. Everything is late, the errands are never done–still I bought three things for peeps I love today, things that require a postmark to be received. I’ve packed 95 boxes in the past month, hauled them up and down 3 flights of stairs and out to the garage, and I still feel like I haven’t done enough.

    Until today. Until I read your column, which is the only me time I’ve had since the moment I woke today. And you made me feel normal again.

    D.

    • You just bought a business, didn’t you? That’s your new baby! And with your writing and keeping up with the girls, it’s no wonder you’re nonstop. I told someone yesterday that I’ve been feeling busy, but not productive. It sounds like your box hauling fits into that category.

      Crazy is the new normal. It’s all the rage.

      XO

  12. Awesome read! I don’t know how you do it. Proud to have been next to you for that one handed handstand!! I treasure my time on my mat! It’s changed my whole outlook on life. Thanks for sharing!

    • Col, thank you so much! I can absolutely relate to yoga changing my life. It took me entirely by surprise too. I wonder what the Mercy nuns would think of the two of us…

      Xo

  13. Do you know how much I look forward to your posts in my inbox since I found your blog? I needed this post. I disappear. I have disappeared into my children and rarely let myself come up for air ever since my daughter passed away. I keep trying to do more for me but that nagging “I need to appreciate every second of motherhood” thing keeps creeping in. But you are so right, my day is never about me and maybe my day would be better if just a little piece of it was. Thank you.

    • Thank you, Jessica. I think about you, I think about Kathy from Kissing the Frog, I can’t stop thinking about Kate from Chasing Rainbows and what they’re going through with Gavin. And it makes me feel like a louse for complaining about shredding 10 lbs of chicken. I can’t help but think, in your shoes, I’d disappear in my primal need to soak every ounce of my kids up.

      But, if anyone deserves to make a part of the day about her, it’s you, my friend. Thank you for your kind words. XO

  14. I’m a mom to three boys and I get this. It’s non-stop doing. And I’m forever thankful to be their mom and be able to do these things for them(even the nasty smelling of the laundry to tell the dirty from the clean- I almost gagged on a sock this morning). But it’s so dang busy.

    And that’s exactly why I find time for yoga, too. I figure if I go for one class(though it’s always my hope to do 2 or even 3 each week), that is 1 hour out of 168 in a week that I’m taking for me(3 out of 168 doesn’t sound so bad, either, does it?)

    This was so lovely.

    And btw- my son who is on meds for ADHD- we also have to watch his weight. But you know what? I don’t question my decision for meds for him. Because it has made his life about 20,000x easier in the 6 months that he has been on it.

    • Shell, I am right there with you. Yoga once a week (wishing I could get there 2-3 times). And grateful that we’re giving my boy the medication he needs that will help him focus, move less, and (most importantly) keep his confidence intact. Thank you so much for reading and for commenting!

  15. Oh.

    My.

    I am sitting here with tears in my eyes from reading your words. It is a struggle, daily sometimes, for me not to disappear. It is nuts that it would be so easy to disappear…..not disappearing takes work. Of course, the realization if i would just take one hour to paint, art journal or mediate, i would not only be better for my bunch, but for me, too.

    Thank you for sharing this…..thank you.

    • Isabel, the easiest thing is to disappear, isn’t it? You nailed it…not disappearing takes work indeed. It is so worth it, but when you’re in the throes of a crazy day, it’s easiest to dismiss myself and my needs and chalk them up as selfish. Which is ridiculous. It’s like putting your oxygen mask on before putting anyone else’s on when you’re on an airplane.

      Thank you so much for your kind words.

  16. This. Is. It. Right here. Prioritizing yourself as a person, for you and for no one but you…but in the end, everyone reaps the rewards. Doing for ourselves is the most selfless thing we can do as mothers, but for some reason, this is counter-intuitive for many of us (including me). Like you, I work hard to fill my own cup. When I don’t…holy shit.

    Laughed and nodded through this wonderful expression of you. Thank you. xo

    • Counter-intuitive is the perfect way to describe it, Denise! My house looks like a war zone. I just finally washed those crock pots (from Monday…ewwww!) tonight. For some people, filling their cup means having those dishes done immediately. For me, it means moving my body. Remembering to carve that time out for me is crucial. Thank you for reading! XO

  17. You’re a badass mom and a badass yogi. Way to rock that one arm handstand!!! This entry is so true and so honest and so good for so many reasons but when I got to the “namaste” I thought hmmm….that one word sums it up….the light in you is honoring the light in them. We say it on the mat, but you’re LIVING it. Amazing.

    • Ah, I’m crying at “the light in you is honoring the light in them”!!! Thank you so much, Lauren. You get it, girl. You really get it. XO

  18. Love everything about this post. Yes, you and I and many share these “first world problems” as many of us (not just me!!) say on Twitter. But when it all adds up it feels overwhelming. I really like how you frame what we do as moms sometimes as disappearing. How true.

    That picture of you is FABULOUS. You look strong. And you ARE strong.

    • Exactly, Nina. Cumulatively, it can be overwhelming. I love that first world problems phrase. Because it keeps me in line. But, damn, I’m overextended.

      Thanks for the compliment about the pic! I feel happy about it…it represents more than just a pose to me. It makes me smile. XO

  19. I saw Nina tweet this (I don’t know how we discovered each other’s blogs, but we did) and can I just say, “wow.” It pretty much summed up every fear I ever have about becoming a mother and why I don’t think I could ever do it. I’m glad you have yoga to ground you and give you that time for self-care.

    • Hi, Molly! Nina is my Jewish sister from another Mother! I have found myself slipping away little by little over the years. But I have 4 kids, and that’s a lot of kids. It feels natural to put the kids’ needs above mine when they’re at their youngest and most helpless ages. When it becomes habit, as they get older, that’s when it becomes dangerous. I’m trying to break that habit. It doesn’t happen every day, but I’m getting better and better at it. Yoga rocks! Thank you for reading!

  20. Bethany, Wow! So grateful to my new friend Nina Badzin for sending me your way! I absolutely loved this post! So real, so raw, and so comforting and relatable. I love that you wrote this to your yoga teacher. I teach yoga sculpt in Minneapolis. And we have much else in common. I too, have four children, one of whom has ADD, and I am also writing a book. It is so true how easy it is to slip into the habit of making our lives all about “them,” but I, like you, turn to yoga to continually reconnect with and honor “me.” I am afraid to think of what I would be like if I didn’t make it to my mat on a regular basis. Thanks for sharing your beautiful, inspiring thoughts and words about yoga and motherhood!

    • Julie, I’m so glad you found me! Nina’s the best. You can probably relate to this…the busier I get, the more important that time on my mat becomes. Without it, I’m a lesser version of myself. Yoga has been an amazing practice for me as an individual, but I am so inspired by the way it connects me to other people as well. I’ll always have a place in my life for it. Thank you so much for reading!

  21. Wow, I am so glad I found this post today. You wrote so beautifully, that I had tears falling at work. Lately I have felt like I am invisible to the boys at my house, and that all I want to do is disappear alone. Trying to keep up with everything, and not feeling appreciation from them. (not like a 10 month old baby cares if the laundry gets done). But this is a reminder that I need to take in the moments. Thank You

    • Audrey, last night I was walking past my 11 year old as he was finishing his 2nd dinner. He handed his empty plate to me and asked, “could you put this in the sink for me please?” I almost had a temper tantrum. “I DO SO MUCH FOR YOU EVERY DAY! I WILL NOT WALK YOUR PLATE TO THE SINK AFTER MAKING YOU NOT ONE BUT TWO DINNERS!” He looked at me like I was nuts. Sometimes I don’t have just one more thing left to give. Not by 9PM.

      Thanks so much for reading!

  22. Bethany, you don’t know me, I’ve been lurking a little while, and I’ve been meaning to read this post for the past few days, seeing it in my Facebook feed numerous times.

    I failed to read it because I disappeared. Not always into motherhood but also into my work (for which I am grateful, working for yourself is no breeze), and into this sickness that has downed my household one by one, and has chosen to linger on in me the longest.

    I was just thinking about resuming my yoga practice, missing the peace of heart and mind that comes with every practice that I do.

    And now, I read this and boom, serendipity.

    Also, that’s one bad ass hand stand.

    Thank you.

    • Alison, perfect timing! It’s just as easy to disappear into work as it is into motherhood.

      Sorry about the sickness! The one who gets it last always gets it longest (and most violently) in our house. Nothing fun about it.

      I feel the same way about yoga that you do…it calms me. I just went to a class on Wednesday night, which was amazing. It was an inversion flow class. So, the instructor had us going from downward dog straight to handstand. I was like, “Um, pardon me, I can’t do that.” He said, “Don’t worry. We’re going to do it about 25 times, so you’ll have plenty chances to try.” It was an absolute ball. Different from the Vinyasa flow that I’m more familiar with. Yoga absolutely rocks. There is always so much more to learn. I love that. It’s so much like life.

      Thank you so much for reading and commenting! I felt bad ass for the short time I held that handstand;-)

  23. I’m going to resist the urge to write a ME TOO story here (although the most awesome kinds of blog posts – like this one – lend themselves to this feeling…like you just read the words of your bestfriendyounevermet and you *get it get it get it* and want to share).

    But this isn’t about me. It’s about you and the day you triumphed over invisibility.
    At least long enough for yoga. Then you THANKED SOMEONE ELSE for it.
    Which is pure generosity. And also, not surprising at all based on what I just read.

    You seem like a giver, in the most sincere (and hardest, nonstop) kind of way.
    I’m so glad you occasionally pause, breathe and give to yourself.

    And now, I must go drag my dogs in the house because they’re barking at the neighbors and the three other people in the room don’t seem to hear them. Somehow.

    p.s. Remind me to never let my kids join the Reading Olympics.
    XO

    • Julie! Post your ME TOO story!!!! Right here! I want to read it! When I made the list of all the things I had done that one day, the tears were rolling down my cheeks because I really thought about how much work there is behind-the-scenes to being a parent. And I don’t know how some of my friends do all that I listed + have a full time job. Sweet Jesus. I’d need an IV of caffeine.

      I’m a middle child. Pleaser. Married to a youngest child. Wild man. So, I have to fight my urges to fix everyone’s ruffled feathers sometimes, and remember not to disappear.

      Thank you so much for reading…I mean it about posting your version of this story.

  24. Thank you for this. Three boys under three, a husband who works all the time, and my own demanding full time job. I was in tears at 7:45 am. I sipped my coffee at my desk before staring work and decided I need a laugh so I turned to your blog and THIS was much better than a laugh – a voice of calm in a storm. Thank you.

    • Allyson, you are in the throes of it!!! Hang in there! Thank you so much for reading! Check back tomorrow, I should have a funny one lined up for you then!

  25. Great post!

    In case you ever need to shred 10 lbs of chicken again, I have a tip for you. You can shred chicken (assuming it’s boneless) in a stand mixer with a paddle attachment. After cooking just toss the chicken in the mixer’s bowl, turn it on a medium speed, and in a minute or two your chicken will be shredded. Good luck keeping all those boys fed!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *