21 Things Every Mom Thinks When Her Kid is Home Sick

I never knew about getting sick until I had two kids. When I was young and unencumbered, if I felt a cold coming on, I’d make a point of ordering a screwdriver at the bar that night. You know, for the vitamin C. And then, by the next day, I was usually fine. (Note to self: Should cold medicine have more vodka in it?)

Then I had my daughter, and at first, she wasn’t the disease-magnet I’d feared. She didn’t get her first fever until 15-months-old, and I bragged that it was my magical breast milk keeping her healthy. Once she started preschool, however, there was definitely more cold catching. I braced myself for the dreaded hand, foot and mouth disease, but it never darkened our door.

Enter baby #2 — aka, Typhoid Baby. My magical breast milk kept her healthy for a grand total of five months. (So much for my holier than thou breast-is-best bragging.) It seems the germs from the petri dish that is preschool travel into our home via the big kid and infect our poor baby, who then smears her runny snot on every human, toy, and surface in the house. The four of us pass her germs around in an unholy circle, reinfecting each other over and over, like the least fun ever game of ring around the rosy. Sneezes, tissues, we all fall down.

So needless to say, I’ve been home with a sick kid more than my share lately. Most recently, the 4-year-old missed a whole week of school on account of the flu. (Our appointment for her flu shot was scheduled for a week after she got sick, naturally.)

When I’m caring for a sick kid, my tone and words are gentle and empathetic as I nurse her back to health. My inner monologue is a whole different story. Here are 21 things I’m guessing a lot of us think when our kids are sick:

1. Please don’t get me sick

2. Please don’t get your sister/brother sick.

3. At least I don’t have to cook three meals, because you’re not going to eat them anyway. Have a popsicle, kid.

4. What kind of idiot gives a child a red popsicle to eat on white sheets? This kind!

5. Come on, sneeze into your elbow. Cover your mouth with anything. For the love of God, just cough away from my face.

6. I get that you’re sick, but how much more energy does it take to drop your used Kleenex into the trash can I provided instead of leaving them right next to it for me to pick up?

7. If you wash your hands with soap, I will give you a pony….(continue at Momtastic) Read More »

Posted in My Family, Parenthood | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

7 Ways I’m a Different Mom With my Second Kid


Like fingerprints and snowflakes, no two kids turn out the same. Is it just their genes, or is it us? I didn’t plan on parenting differently the second time around, yet I feel like I’ve become such a different mom. Here’s how I’ve changed:

1. I’m Smarter – As a second-time mom, there’s a healthy sense of “been there, done that.” It’s not that I don’t appreciate my baby’s unique journey, but I know what to expect, and I’m ready for it. Which is why my second baby hasn’t accidentally rolled off the bed. (Sorry, first kid.)

2. I’m Calmer – I wasted a lot of energy with my first baby just full-on panicking. What’s that noise she made? How come she only scoots backwards? Why is her poop green? This time, I’m not racing to the pediatrician with a perfectly healthy baby unless she suddenly turns into a unicorn.

3. I’m Less Rigid – Baby #1 ate the recommended rice cereal. Baby #2 nibbles on my sandwich and occasionally drinks the bath water. Speaking of which, gone is the infant tub with the protective hammock; I tossed the second babe in the big tub with me. (It saves my back, and I get clean, to boot.) I’m breaking minor parenting rules left and right, and we’re both having more fun.

Continue reading at mom.me…

Read More »

Posted in My Family, Parenthood, Siblings | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

On a Scale from Tori Spelling to Never, When Do Most Women Want Postpartum Sex?


Let’s talk about sex, baby.  Or more accurately, sex after baby.

A friend recently confided in me that after giving birth to her first child, she lost her sex drive for a long time.  She remembers sadly mourning her old friend, sex.

“I’d always been a really sexual person,” she told me.  “And then it was just gone.  I thought I’d lost it forever.”  Thankfully, her libido wasn’t really dead.  It was just hibernating.  Things got better in the intimacy department over time, but it took a lot longer than she expected to truly feel normal–and frisky–again.  Just in time for baby #2.

I could relate. After I gave birth, my OB told me to come back in six weeks for a check-up. The main purpose of this exam seemed to be to give me the greenlight to resume intercourse.

“Oh joy!” I exclaimed. “What great news. Because now that I’ve had my whole world turned upside down, my body is unrecognizable, I’m not sleeping, I’m trying to figure out breastfeeding, and I belong entirely to a needy newborn, shagging is totally at the top of my to-do list. Thank goodness it’s doctor approved.”

Okay, so I didn’t say any of that.  But I thought it.  Just because you can have sex safely six weeks after giving birth, doesn’t mean you want to.

Some women do, of course. Tori Spelling comes to mind.

A photo posted by Tori Spelling (@torispelling) on

She conceived her fourth child a month after giving birth.  (I remember my jaw hitting the floor when I thought about having two kids 10 months apart.)

But a lot of new moms just aren’t feeling it that soon. An Australian study found that most women actually wait longer than six weeks after giving birth to resume intercourse.

Here are just a few reasons why sex might not seem appealing soon after giving birth:

  • Your libido is flatlining thanks to those wild and crazy hormones
  • Extra pounds and loose skin can make you feel self conscious, even if your partner couldn’t care less
  • You’re still sore, particularly if you had an episiotomy or a natural tear.
  • Every bed in the house is occupied by a baby or toddler and shower sex sounds a bit too athletic right now
  • You’re all touched out from constant holding and nursing
  • When you try to think sexy thoughts, all that comes to mind is how you need to order more diapers in a bigger size
  • You’re so tired
  • You’re so tired
  • You’re so tired

I wish doctors mentioned any of this during the postpartum check-up. That way women wouldn’t feel guilty for not being “all better” at six weeks, and partners would have more realistic expectations.

Oh yes, our partners. Even the most understanding spouse is going to want to be close to you again, sometime in the next century. And we all know sex is important for keeping couples bonded.  It’s great for reducing stress. It’s what makes us lovers and not just really good friends.  So what’s a couple to do while the one who pushed a cantaloupe out of her coochie is still getting her mojo back?

Take it slow.

Keep expectations low.

Maintain your sense of humor.

And get some lube.

Yup. Every article I found about how to make postpartum sex more comfortable and pleasurable mentioned lube.  It seems obvious, right?  Not only does a personal lubricant help with lingering discomfort or hormonal dryness, but it can allow you to skip over some of the preliminaries that you may not feel like engaging in or have time for right now. Real talk, ladies.

That’s why I was excited to partner with K-Y on this post.  They offer a wide variety of personal lubricants (and even some surprisingly friendly-looking sex toys).  Plus, K-Y has helpful sexual wellness articles on their website that support new moms, such as “Intimacy after a Cesarean.”    I encourage you to check them out.

Moms, how soon did you get back on the horse after having a baby?  Any advice for new moms trying to figure it all out?

Brought to you by K-Y. 

Read More »

Posted in Couplehood, My Family, Pregnancy | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

20 Signs You’re A Sleep-Deprived Mom


You know how when your gas tank’s almost empty, you’re supposed to turn off the A/C and the radio while you cruise to the nearest filling station so you don’t waste fuel? That’s a great analogy for how I feel as a mom to an infant. I’m technically awake, but most of my higher functions are powered down to conserve my strength, and I’m running on fumes. Which is why I can’t remember your name. Or my name. Or where I left my purse.

Here are 20 other signs of the utter sleep deprivation moms of new babies experience:

1. You could easily fall asleep right after downing a venti macchiato (if anyone would let you.)

2. You left your cell phone in the refrigerator and don’t even realize it until later when you call yourself and the milk is ringing.

3. Someone took a candid photo of you and you’re like, “Who’s that old hag with the horrible posture?” P.S. It’s you.

4. You finally understand how it is that horses can fall asleep standing up.

5. You can yawn the alphabet.

6. It’s raining polka-dots. Oh wait, no, you’re just seeing spots from rubbing your eyes so much.

7. You’ve knocked your coffee over onto your keyboard so often that you’re on a first name basis with the folks at the Genius Bar.

Don’t fall alseep yet…continue reading at mom.me

Read More »

Posted in My Family, Parenthood | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

7 Things Your Second Baby Will Do Sooner Than Your First

My first baby didn’t roll over until she was seven months old, making her the last one in Mommy & Me to hit that milestone. (And oh, how I worried… for nothing.) So I was surprised to find my second baby rolling in both directions at just three months. Looking back, I credit benign neglect. I was so busy interacting with my high maintenance preschooler that the new baby spent a ton of time on the floor, just exploring. Is it any wonder she figured out how to roll?


It turns out second babies experience a lot of things sooner, which certainly keeps a mom on her toes. Steel yourself, because here’s what your second one will probably do early:

1. Catch a Cold – There’s not enough hand sanitizer in the world to shelter that second baby from the onslaught of kid germs. I recently caught my 4-year-old with her finger in the baby’s mouth. (“She likes it,” was her defense.) It’s awful hearing your precious infant cough and sneeze, but hopefully the virus will be mild and you’ll be one step closer to building up Baby’s immunities.

2. Watch TV – Wow, did I pat myself on the back for waiting the American Academy of Pediatrics-recommended two years before giving my first baby any screen time. Now that we’re all sharing a living room, it’s nearly impossible to shield Baby #2 from the TV. I wonder if the AAP would give a special dispensation for Doc McStuffins.

3. Eat Ice Cream – If I remember correctly, when babies start solids, it goes rice cereal, oatmeal, sweet potatoes, bananas, hot fudge sundae, yes? Try as you might to stay on track with Baby’s nutrition, it’s inevitable that hungry little monkeys are going to want to partake in the older kids’ snacks—especially anything cold and sweet.

Keep reading at mom.me… Read More »

Posted in My Family, Parenthood, Siblings | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment