She makes me uneasy, and our relationship is strained as a result

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Photo Credit: Maria Lysenko via Unsplash

You know how certain people just make you feel uncomfortable? Not in a freaked-out, I-think-this-person-might-be-a-mass-murderer kind of way, but in the sense that you’re not sure how to relax and just be in their presence? Maybe it’s that coworker who stares at you silently and expressionless just a bit too long after you’ve finished a sentence, making you feel they’re secretly judging you. Or that acquaintance whose personality doesn’t quite mesh with yours, like the loudmouth to your introvert, who’s so unpredictable that you fear what may come out of their mouth next.

I t’s the first day of my…

Welcome to the Marital Comfort Zone

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Photo Credit: Mitchell Orr via Unsplash

My husband and I started dating in 2012. With him being 11 years younger, I was apprehensive about A LOT of things during those first few months of courtship.

Will he think I’m as cool as his younger ex-girlfriends? I mean, one of them sang lead vocals in a band. Like, a real one that actually toured and was mentioned in Rolling Stone magazine.

Will people see us together in public and think he’s my little brother?

Will he be freaked out when we have sex by this weird episiotomy scar that is basically like a permanent hemorrhoid?

Fortunately, none…

Spoiler alert: Cursing and telling them they’re doomed for failure is a damn good start

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Photo Credit: Engin Akyurt via Unsplash

I’m far from being the perfect mom. Truth be told, I’ve been sucking tremendously at my role lately. I spend entirely too many late nights in front of my laptop — wrapping up work that didn’t get finished during the day — and not enough time investing in what really matters.

Time that should be spent building Lego creations with my Kindergartner. Having conversations with my Senior about her college plans. Taking a deep dive into why my 14-year-old is so full of angst and hostility.

But at the very least, I make sure they know they’re loved. …

And where in the fridge to store my leafy greens. Thanks to Google, I may finally be an adult.

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Photo Credit: Annie Spratt via Unsplash

I’ve never possessed any culinary skill. I’m fairly proficient in making spaghetti and frozen pizzas, and I do bake one mean spinach lasagna. But that’s basically where my cooking talents end. Needless to say, my contribution at holiday meals is a store-bought pie.

Okay, I’m kidding. I usually arrive late and empty-handed.

My mom once confessed that — while we were growing up — instead of inviting her three daughters into the kitchen while she cooked, she basically told us to stay the hell away. Maybe not in those exact words, but it was implied.

The kitchens in my past…

When ONE person does laundry for FIVE people, the neglect is real.

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Photo Credit: Charles Deluvio via Unsplash

Hey, Rachel...where have you been?

Hey, striped towel. What’s up?

Not much. The gang and I have just been chillin’ in a hamper for two weeks. Did you forget about us?

Ooh, yikes. Honestly, yeah, I did. I’m sorry, but ever since moving into a house where the laundry room is on the second floor, I haven’t given you the attention you deserve. I’m basically only upstairs to sleep.

Plus, you’re in the laundry room. I rarely ever walk down that hallway. And it doesn’t help that the girls leave sopping wet washcloths piled in the bathtub, and each use…

I spent nine hours alone in a hotel room with my 5-year-old, high on Mt. Dew. So, how was your day?

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Photo: Courtesy of Author

My husband is a supervisor at an automotive manufacturing plant in our hometown.

For two weeks, he’s helping out at a short-staffed sister plant, two hours from home. His company put him up in a hotel, so he asked for me and our son to come stay a few nights over this past weekend. We obliged.

I love vacations. Even if it’s just for the weekend.

Weekend getaways are the absolute best.

Between 2013 and 2019 — before COVID and other life events hit — our family took annual summer vacations. I’m talking, the whole damn family.

I’m pretty sure that any mom with three or more kids will tell you that number three did her in.

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Psst, Rachel. Yeah, you. This is your sanity. Remember me? I know, it’s been a while…what, like five years now? Damn, I’m sorry it’s been so long since I’ve come around. But after you gave birth to your last kid, I had to hit the road. Sorry, but it was more than I could take.

Then COVID hit. From afar, I witnessed you hit rock bottom and lose your shit on multiple occasions. You took on the additional role of Kindergarten teacher, on top of everything else you’ve got going on. I mean, giving birth to your third child almost…

A reflection on embracing — or at least acknowledging — the person I’ve become since COVID

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Photo Credit: Aditya Saxena via Unsplash

CORONA 2020.

It sounds like a beer running for President. Too bad it wasn’t, because it totally would’ve gotten my vote.

Instead, it’s a slogan that represents the past year of my life. Of all of our lives.

When March of last year dropped its nuclear bomb, I just assumed the pandemic would end within a matter of months. I never imagined the world would be ringing in 2021, still socially distanced, still wearing masks.

In retrospect, 2020 taught me a lot about myself. Forced into confinement with a husband and three kids, barely leaving the house, and basically being…

Cutting my hair made me feel like a new and better person

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Photo Credit: Daniel Apodaca via Unsplash

I started growing out a pixie cut five years ago after my son was born. I’d worn the style for about three years, and although I absolutely adored it, I was ready for a change.

Any mother will tell you that pregnancy does crazy things to a woman’s body. Hormones can cause boobs to inflate, fingernails to grow at warp speed, and feet to swell into marshmallows that fit into nothing else but socks. Or more accurately, Christmas stockings.

For me, this last pregnancy resulted in all of the above, plus a drastic change in the texture of my hair.

And my honest first reaction was no.

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Photo Credit: Ignacio Campo via Unsplash

It was early January. I was 23. Just moments before, I had been standing. But I now found myself sitting in the bathroom floor — knees bent with elbows propped on top — holding the proof with both hands. My back had apparently slid down the wall without me realizing, into my current seated position. I don’t recall how I got there.

The pregnancy test was positive.

We had met in a bar a little over nine months before finding out we were going to be parents. It was rocky and bad from the beginning, and I should have read…

Rach B

Parenting. Relationships. Real Life. You Can't Make This Shit Up.

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