Meet The Mamas: Grace

age 30 married, mother of two, Silicon Valley, CA

left the world of conference calls, PowerPoint, and paychecks for the land of play dates, nap times, and pretend; a Bachelors in Psychology and an MBA in Marketing, but still can't convince a certain headstrong little boy that bedtime is wonderful; could doze off at any moment

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN ON YOUR MOTHERHOOD JOURNEY?

Our son "Scout" was born in April 2006. Three years and nearly four months later, he was followed by a little sister, who we call "Lou".

WHAT IS ONE OF YOUR HARDEST “MOM MOMENTS” THAT YOU WILL ONE DAY LOOK BACK ON AND LAUGH?

It aggravates me to no end when people (mostly strangers) make snap judgments about my parenting. You try your best to keep a tight lid on things, but you can't control everything. I know. I've tried.

Sometimes tantrums just happen... and usually in front of other people.

On one particularly awful day (following a particularly awful series of weeks), I happened to be interviewing a potential nanny at our house which was a total wreck at the time. I think I actually had to shove a bunch of crap onto the floor to make room for her on our sofa.

As if that wasn't bad enough, demons decided to take hold of the children. Hitting, throwing, cries to wake the dead, screams barely audible to human ears...

Hoping to just get the interview over with quickly, I unwisely choose to ignore them... er, I mean the noise. I noticed the horrified look on the girl's face, so I jokingly asked, "You don't want to babysit for us anymore, do you?"

To which, she actually responded, "I don't mean to sound judgmental but... is there ANY discipline in this house?"

And then, she proceeded to lecture me...

(Note to self: Don't schedule interviews with potential nannies immediately following a fro yo/lunch/play date. Come to think of it, having a fro yo/lunch/play date isn't actually such a brilliant idea either. )

WHAT HAS SURPRISED YOU THE MOST ABOUT MOTHERHOOD?

The isolation.

Our family moved three times in eighteen months for my husband's film career. Two of those moves were transatlantic and somewhere in between, we managed to have a second child.

It's difficult enough to move to a new place where you know absolutely NO ONE...

Pile on top of that two kids with polar opposite temperaments and completely erratic schedules, no naps, a husband who spends more time at that office than at home, and a hefty dollop of postpartum...

All I have to say to that is, "Praise Al Gore for inventing the Internet!"

Feeling so bleary-eyed, lonely, and desperate in the absence of nearby family and friends, it was often the warm glow of my laptop and the words that came pouring out of it that reached out and comforted me the best.

WHAT IS A CURRENT CHALLENGE IN YOUR FAMILY LIFE?

Making time for my marriage... as soon as the kids are fed... and in bed... and the kitchen floor is mopped... and I answer this one last email... while folding seven more loads of laundry... "Hey Honey, your mom's on the phone. She wants to know what we're doing between Christmas and New Year's".... Ooooh, Project Runway is on...

MY “MOM SECRET WEAPON” IS…

My children are in such vastly different stages right now.

For my daughter, it's an endless supply of Annie's Fruity Bunnies cereal. The girl is happiest as when she's eating... just like her mama!

For my son, it's my point-and-shoot camera. If ever I need him to be quiet, I just switch off the flash and tell him to take some photos. It really helps him settle down and focus (pun intended).

MY MAMA MANIFESTO IS . . .

... to live authentically and joyfully
... to model unconditional love, kindness, and respect for others
... to encourage my children to learn from their mistakes and be a safe place to land when they do
... to nurture their natural abilities, talents, and interests
... to value good judgment and independent thought over blind obedience
... to take an interest in the world and help shape it to be the kind of place I'd like my children to live


photo credit {Images by Anna}

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