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// she's only happy in the sun.
Jan 15

all.the.things. and none of the things.

i’m reading books again.
it’s like taking a long, refreshing, cool drink of water and only realizing how thirsty you are when you’re in the middle of it. i had really missed books. i read all the time, but not books. not cover to cover REAL made-out-of-paper books. and it feels like coming home. i’m remined that OH yeah, this is what i used to do escape/understand/be entertained. i’m currently in the middle of Cheryl Strayed’s ‘tiny beautiful things‘. it’s so damn good that i keep texting my friends extracts and telling them they HAVETOREADITIMMEDIATELY. it’s a collection of responses to a kind of help column that Strayed wrote for under the psuedonym ‘Sugar’. people would send in letters about their troubles and dilemmas, and her responses to them are so good – personal, encouraging, real, raw, unfiltered, relatable. i am going to be forever changed from this book and i just wish i’d read it sooner.


i *think* i have a plan.
i used to write more consistently on this platform. and then my 2 sons came along and time became such a luxury. for a long time i felt like i didn’t really have the option of using up any spare minutes for the purpose of writing for myself. but i’ve missed it. and so i emailed some of my friends and asked for advice on what i should do – and my quandary because if i did write again, i didn’t want to be stuck in a ‘mommy blogger’ niche. below are extracts from some of my most favorite responses:

“Oh i have a whole list of random little articles I think i should write. One of them is: ‘I am afraid of my friend’s 2 year old’ or ‘Education system in shambles: the day I realized that I thought any guy who used any sort of accurate punctation was a catch’.”

“we can summarise three decades as: i went from human to robot and maybe back to human again. we’ll see how that all ends. ”

“sorry if my advice stinks! i can’t be a mom, write a dissertation, create a human, AND GIVE GOOD ADVICE! IT’S TOO MUCH!”

“i feel the same way – what do i do? write about being a single (fml), cat-less, 33 year old without children? do i write about OTHER PEOPLE’S CHILDREN (hey maybe that’s a really good blog idea)”

“DON’T BE KIND. Be just.  You have nothing to prove to anyone.  So don’t be afraid to write about your experiences as you experienced them.

the best advice though?

“WWBD? (What would Bjork do???!)”

and so here’s what i’m considering. i’m going to create a sort of writers collective. nothing dramatic. just a collaborative space online where a few of my friends who also love to write, but don’t necessarily want the onus of a blog to maintain, can all contribute. maybe there will be a theme each month. maybe there won’t. maybe it will just be a piece of internet real estate that only our moms check. we’ll see.

on balance. 
my yoga instructor always asks us to set an intention for class and for our lives. and everytime i try to think ‘SIX PACK’ but the reality is that balance is the word that keeps clanging noisily in my head. it’s definitely something i struggle with. it’s something i want to do better at. and i don’t mean ‘tree pose’. i mean work/life, and indoor/outdoor, and me time/other people time.

the new sphq.
i vividly remember the day shabs, dev, and i, walked through our first brick and mortar soulpancake office in atwater village, los angeles. we looked around at all.the.space and wondered how on earth we’d fill it. it seemed excessive considering there were just three of us and a part time office manager. but we did fill it. with art we made from string, and spraypaint, and post it notes. and then very soon after, with humans with passionate creativity, expansive hearts, and brilliant minds. we packed it with ideas, and equipment, and enthusiastic interns. we filled it to the brim with cupcakes, and spontaneous dance parties, and rugs that dev was convinced were shedding microscopic particles that were lodging in his lung chambers (i kid you not). it’s been nearly 3 years and over the weekend everything was packed up and moved to our new office – a huge space we are sharing with our good friends. last friday shabs sent me photos of our old space – emptied out completely, and i felt this heartache-y sense of nostalgia mingled with pride. the same feeling i had packing up phix and zavi’s newborn clothes and knowing they would never be that size again. everything is changing and evolving and growing up. and it is all so great, but still a little hard.

Jan 15

an open letter to new mamas

over the past year or so, several of my friends became mothers. brand new, first time, mamas. and i’ve found that when i look them in the eye, or read their 3am texts, or hear their fatigued voices on the other end of the line – i remember my own experience so vividly and viscerally. i am suddenly back there with them and i get it – the sheer panic, bewilderment, exhaustion, gratitude, anxiety, and love that slams you from every side, and at every moment. and i keep wanting to reassure these friends of mine. to hug them hard and tell them it’s going to be ok. to remind them that they are capable and strong and resilient and brave. and to promise them that one day they will feel ‘normal’ again. but i don’t always have the right words and i remember people telling me the same things while i was in my own sleep-deprived fog of new motherhood, and thinking i was some wild exception to the rule. so instead – i decided to write a letter to you all. you know who you are. and i love you.

dear new mamas,

this isn’t about giving you advice because i know you’re getting your fill of that between your loved ones, and google, and well-meaning strangers at the grocery store.

this is definitely not about telling you to suck it up and be grateful. because i know you are. i know it because i remember the unbridled joy in your voice when you first told me you were pregnant. i watched as you laughed off the nausea, exhaustion, swollen ankles, and fastidiously ordered decaf. i read the excitement-laced emails you sent with questions about co-sleeping, strollers, nursing and birthing classes.

so i know you’re thrilled and i know you are falling deeply, desperately, in love.

i’m not undermining any of that. but i also know that it doesn’t necessarily make what you’re going through right now easy, breezy and effortless. because the reality of being a mother isn’t always exposed in all its facets or discussed openly. and it’s certainly not being facebooked and instagrammed.

and that reality might mean waking up every 1.5 hours to nurse. being bored. feeling alone. feeling misunderstood. dreading getting out of the shower because you will just have to do.it.all.again. the seemingly neverending cycle of feeding, and changing, and worrying, and trying to get this tiny human to just.fall.asleep. and then missing the addictive smell of their skin the moment you lay them down.

i remember the days bleeding into each other. and not recognizing myself in the mirror. and snapping at my mother-in-law. and feeling entirely inept.

i’d feel pangs of envy hearing laughter outside and thinking about people nonchalantly walking together. grabbing a coffee. stopping to peruse a gift shop without worrying about strollers, schedules and leaking boobs.

in my darkest moments i would sit tensely on the edge of our bed, nursing my sweet son as tears rolled from my cheeks and splashed down to his. his eyes were closed and i realized i felt so entirely conflicted. everything was perfect. a healthy child. a caring husband. a world of support. and yet i had this aching throb inside my heart. a sort of unrelenting grief over my previous existence. and a deepseated longing just not to be SO needed.

as the mama it feels like it ALL hinges on you. especially the first few months. you are survival, comfort and strength. you are expected to intuitively know what your baby needs. and there will be some days when you do. and others when you just don’t.

i felt anxious over every decision. second guessing each appoach. wondering and researching and googling. am i producing enough milk? is he hot? is he crosseyed? is he lactose intolerant? is he for real?

and then the bigger questions: how do single moms do it? how do people have more than one?!

and the the even bigger questions: am i actually cut out for this?

and i guess all i really wanted to tell you is that i’m here. and you’re not on this island of motherhood all alone. and that you can text me at 3am with the crying-face emoji and i’ll know exactly what you mean.



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