Feeling all the feels this Christmas

Christmas time is a strange but beautiful time of year, I’m always chasing that Christmas feeling and I’m sad some years when it never comes. Being on the South West Coast with the possibility of snow at zero doesn’t help much either. 

My husband never celebrated Christmas before me, as he grew up without them. So he tends to take my lead on just how festive we’ll be for the holidays. Considering how sick he’s been this past month, this year has been a ‘not even mailing Christmas cards’ kind of year. I’m trying my best for New Years cards, but it’s looking mighty slim. It’s just been tough keeping up with everything to be completely honest. My energy is depleted and I’m tired. I’m milking the fact that this is the last year I can get away with my minimalist approach to Xmas. Next year, Mia’s presents will need to be kept in a specific hiding place other than the car and we will probably indeed have to go visit Santa for her first time. I hope though when she’s 25 she won’t be shaming me for her not having her own ‘screaming baby on santa’s lap’ photo before the age of 3. I just don’t have the heart or enough caffeine or time for all 3 of us to stand in line at The Grove for an hour+ to meet the bearded man that my husband still doesn’t like and Mia will definitely hate. He asks me why we have to lie to our daughter about this fucking jolly guy in the first place and I tell him “just because!” That’s why. 

I think about my family so far away this Christmas and the people who tried their hardest to keep traditions alive for me. It was truly all the women in my family. My aunts, my grandmothers, and my great gramma. My maternal grandmother, now just shy of 90 years old, raised my two younger brothers… And every year she did presents and stockings for not only them, but for me as well. She always made sure I had a stocking to open because she didn’t want me to feel left out. She’s seriously the most amazing woman for many reasons, but for loving us so much is number one. I see her getting older now and it hurts. She’s worked so hard her whole life, never being able to rest. She raised 4 children of her own, 3 of which were adopted and then when things got rough for my own mom, she became a mother again and raised my brothers. She’s a literal saint in my book. And she’s my hero. 

We went home to Massachusetts last month to visit & Mia helped her put the ornaments on the tree. It was one of my absolute favorite parts of our trip. Some ornaments well over my mother’s age of 55. There were more than we could even fit on the tree. We literally ran out of room. What a beautiful problem to have. Mia was in heaven learning from her great-grandmother how to open the loops and put the ornaments on each branch.

In my motherhood now I know that the magic won’t simply come to me anymore, I am the magic. Such as the amazing women of my family, I must keep the magic going for my own family. I hope I can live up to how fucking great they are. xo Merry Christmas 🎄

Severing Ties

… Not ‘toes’ like I first wrote. But if you want a toe, hell, I can get you a toe by 3:00 o’clock this afternoon… with nail polish. 

No but in all seriousness, man have I been going through some shit lately… I mean, we all have right? 2016 has been a year of just wtf. What a crazy year it’s been. But right now I want to get a little more personal. My own little journey these past few months has been a ride, let me tell you honey ✋🏻 And not a fun ride, like at a theme park. A scary ride, like when you get picked up by the weirdo Uber driver.

Anyway, I got through this what-the-fuck ride and by the end of it, ended up somewhere good. 

I started making some shifts in my life and at times I felt unsure about a lot of them honestly. Anxiety has a way of confusing you when it comes to gut instincts… but I made the changes anyway. I did the things I felt but weren’t sure were right and now I’m grateful for the uncomfortable. And although it isn’t quite the new year yet, I’d like to label 2016 THE YEAR OF SEVERING TIES… I severed THE FUCK out of these ties and damn, it feels good. I mean seriously, my middle name should just be ‘Machete’

I’m almost 30 and I’m just now realizing that I’m a fucking powerhouse. And you know what? You are too. The sad thing about women is that we almost never know just how fucking great we are. We’re so quick to notice it in others but rarely acknowledge it in ourselves. Cutting ties makes me remember that I actually have wings. I’m not tied to anyone’s opinion of me.

 

MY number one thing to sever this year is: Resentment… Because honestly, who the fuck needs it? Resentfulness in itself is so greedy. We don’t mean for it to be, but it is. If you’re resenting someone or something, you’re attempting to hold back how you really feel for the aide or comfort of others. We always want to spare other’s feelings don’t we? But we never notice the imaginary tally we’ve created of all their wrongdoings. We expect people to read our minds and when they don’t, we’re disappointed with them. 

At the end of the day, who’s watching out for your feelings though if it’s not you? Who’s speaking up for you? Who the fuck is filling your cup homie? No one, because you gotta do that for yourself. Literally NO ONE can fill your cup for you BUT you. Sometimes it’s uncomfortably akward and it’s anxiety inducing and it hurts and it can make you angry… but hell, good. Get fucking angry. Get ripshit. Get good and mad and then afterward go home, cry your eyes out or sip some wine or take a bath and right click your mouse… or do all three. There’s nothing wrong with bleeding hearts. Move through what you’ve got to move through: the mad, the sad, the uncomfortable. But move through it. Acknowledge it. Don’t try to surpass it. Grow from it. And then change the fucking world. Change the world by speaking your truth. 

Ladies, aren’t you done with being nice? I’m so fucking done with being nice at the expense of my own feelings. Kindness is one thing, spread that shit like butter! But nice? Eh, nice can fuck off.


I’ve had & have so many ties to cut, it can feel overwhelming. Ties to useless but overbearing guilty feelings, to an outdated version of myself, to who I thought I’m supposed to be, to ideas of what I thought I knew, to never asking for help, to not being good enough, to never feeling worth it, to certain family members, and to a lot of ‘friends’. I ripped out those hooks and I dug out those claws and I grew my own fucking claws instead. From an outsiders point of view, it may look selfish. To the people I’ve directly cut off, I know it looks very selfish. But that’s okay. I’m okay with letting go of bad for me and wishing it the best. I’m too fucking old for bad for me… 
And in letting go of all my heavy, I’ve attracted the light… Some straight up badass people, things, and ideas into my life. I’ve rekindled old friendships that were worth rekindling, I’ve made new friends that by all means seem worth keeping. Ive gotten better at my job, I’ve significantly eased my own mind, I’ve started learning to accept my body for what it’s become, I’ve allowed myself to know that I can attain more, and I’ve accepted the fact that I’ve attained so much already. Most importantly I’ve absolutely become a better mother, wife, and woman (self). 

Self awareness, acceptance and love is a life long journey though. I’m not ignorant to the fact that what I’ve learned so far is just a pebble in the ocean. Just because I’m in a good place right now, doesn’t mean the waters won’t become rougher in the future (what is up with these ocean comparisons right now? I can’t stop). Shit is going to happen and nothing in this world ever stays the same. But at least now I’ve learned how to fucking float. All I needed was a life jacket made up of SSRI’s haha… No but seriously, cutting ties with the shit that was keeping me drowning was all on me. And I did that. And I’m doing that. And holy shit, it feels good. 

xo Love to you mamas. Sever those fucking ties.

Ladies, I Want To Hear From You…

kindness is magic


I love connecting with other moms on this really amazing social media platform, but sometimes I get a bit discouraged when things start to feel like a business of likes & follows& photoshop.I let my anxiety get the best of me…
 I made a decision to make a public account and link it to my blog so that I could connect with other moms and women like me, as well as women not like me. Women who are new to motherhood or even just curious about it. Women who like to empower each other. Women who are figuring their way around a new life with postpartum anxiety and are finding themselves short on resources. Women who have a very small village (if it takes a village, are we doing it wrong with our party of 2?). Or women just wanting to feel positive vibes from another mama and/or woman… Because we’re all in this together at the end of the day. 

But sometimes things and intentions and ideas get lost and found along the way. And sometimes you feel unheard and unremarkable.  
Sometimes it is discouraging. 

Sometimes it’s enlightening.
 This time it started off as the first, but ended up becoming the latter. 

I’ve got a little project in mind… And I would absolutely love to have you participate ladies. Yes, you. Mama & non-mamas welcome. A brutally honest space. A space for strong women (ps we’re ALL strong women). If any of this sounds like something you’d like to be a part of, please reach out to me though here or a message on Instagram (@alyssasroses)

 It will make me so happy to have all of you.
We’re all in this together.
Details to come… xo

Some Things I Want MY Non-Mom Friends To Know.

 I recently read an article titled “10 Things Non-Moms Say That Moms Would Love To Never Hear Again”

 In which a mama wrote an open letter/list telling her non-mom friends what they’re doing to make her upset.

Let me start off by staying I am absolutely not shaming this mother one bit. I applaud her honesty and voicing her thoughts about how she feels… I am however going to politely disagree with MOST of the things she’s listed. I’m going to disagree because I have other things to say to my non-mom friends that I hope make them feel open to asking me questions and not feeling as though they need to tip toe around me with their words. I don’t want there to be a massive divide between me & you. There is no us & them, it’s only US.

Unity amongst all women makes a lot more sense in my book.

Here we go… The things that some non-moms might say and MY response to that.

1. “I’m so exhausted”

 I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again… You’re ABSOLUTELY allowed to say you’re exhausted if you don’t have kids. You can work your fucking ass off and be exhausted, childless. Yes you can. Is being a new mom/ mom in general tiring? Yes it is. Very very much so. Absolutely the most tired I’ve ever been, ever. New levels of tired even… But our tired isn’t better than or above anyone else’s. I know how hard people work regardless of their parent or non-parent status because I’ve worked hard my whole life. You’re tired? I feel you boo, I get it. Friends, please don’t be afraid to tell me you’re tired too.

 

2. Telling me someplace isn’t ‘kid friendly’.

 Please DO tell me if something isn’t kid friendly to save me from the MASSIVE TERRIBLE anxiety attack I’d be having feeling uncomfortable in a setting not appropriate for children. Or tell me so that I can check it out myself and have a heads up to come prepared with lots of activities & snacks to keep my little entertained. Also, I completely support kid-free weddings. It just makes so much sense. In turn though, don’t get upset if I can’t go to something important for you because a good reliable babysitter is like GOLD out here. Rare.

 
3. Asking me to just get a sitter. 

None of my friends assume I can get a sitter at the snap of my fingers in LA because they all know how sketchy childcare out here can be and how crazy I am about who I let watch my kid. No shame here. I’d rather be safe than sorry.

 
4. “I would die if I found out I was pregnant.” 

If you feel like you would die if you found out you were pregnant, that’s how you feel. Doesn’t bother me because we are two different people with two different lives. Use your birth control correctly and hopefully you’ll never end up in a situation where you’ll have to choose. But if you do, I’ll support you wholeheartedly no matter what you decide. Having a kid is not for everyone. And we should all have the right to choose when or if we become parents.

 
5. “Where have you been??” 

Anyone dumb enough to ask me where I’ve been obviously isn’t my friend because they don’t know I’ve had a kid.

 

6. “I know what you mean, my puppy did this…” 

Having a dog is NOTHING like having a baby. Absolutely nothing alike. Not even a little, no matter how much you love your dog. But I also understand that my friends that have dogs & don’t have kids are just wanting to relate, and maybe talking about the being that they really really care about, helps them do that. There’s nothing wrong with that. As long as it’s not excessive comparisons, I don’t really care.

 
7. Telling me what you’ll NEVER do once you have kids.

You can make all the rules you want about what you would never do when you have a kid… I know they’ll almost ALL fly out the window once the time has actually come. Again, this has nothing to do with me or my kid, so tell me all day long about your future awesome parenting skills. It’s cool with me. Better to have some type of plan rather than no plan.

 

8. Telling me I’m not fun anymore.

 I’m so much fucking fun, any friend that tells me otherwise obviously hasn’t seen me dance to Zootopia’s theme song by Shakira in the living room with Mia. My kid thinks I’m a fucking riot… So that qualifies me as fun in my book.

 

9. “How do you put up with this all the time?” 

How do I put up with this all the time? When I birthed my daughter, I also birthed a woman with a whole lot more patience than my former self ever even knew existed. The same will happen to you if you decide to have kids. If you don’t, don’t worry I’ll never ask you to babysit.

 

10. “I hate kids.” 

You hate kids? So did I until I became a mom. Now I melt at ALL the babies, I love them all haha (mine the most obviously). I don’t care if you hate kids, but if you hate MY kid… Then we have a problem.

There you go. Have kids. Don’t have kids. I really don’t care. Let’s all just be kind to one another, k?

 

Unity amongst ALL women ❤️

 

Mommyhood in LA

 I’m not from LA. I mean, how many people do you know that are actually from out here? This crazy city? We now call it home though, my little family of 3. And we do our best. My husband & I work really hard to build a better life for our daughter than what we had. We wake up every day and work towards nourishing the little future that shares our bed with us every night (co-sleeping for the win). We say I love you a lot. We give a ton of kisses. We give an innumerable amount of hugs throughout the day. We argue. Sometimes with each other, sometimes with the smaller version of ourselves about why she shouldn’t jump off the couch like she’s trying to crowd surf. We’re teachers and students everyday. We try. We try hard just like you try. And we get it wrong sometimes. But I’d like to think that we’re doing the important parts right. I hope we are. We all want our kids to be better than us. We want better for them.

That’s why I was so upset the other day when we were in a park full of children and none of them had any interest in playing with each other. We look at our kids as our hope in the future but in those few hours after that day, I instead felt hopeless. I obviously took it more personal than most because my daughter was the one facing rejection over and over again… But how could I not take that personally? She’s my little me, she’s a smaller version of myself with feelings the size of me. I know what rejection feels like in this city and it hurts. I never want her to feel that way, specially not at such a young age. I want to protect her from all the shit life has to offer. I want her to be able to believe in magic and sweet fuzzy things and nice people so much longer than I was able to.

That’s why it hurts to see. Too young for too much truth about this city and possibly about the world.

But luckily children are resilient. Seriously, they’re little powerhouses of well, power. They are the wisest and strongest beings on the planet and they simply do not get enough credit for that. That’s why I’m sitting here, typing this up over a situation that happened days ago and my daughter is in the bedroom sleeping late on a Friday… Because she doesn’t give a shit about what happened the other day. It happened and now she’s forgotten about it and moved on with her badass little life. We’re teachers and students, but today I’m definitely the latter.

xo mamas


 Today I watched you run around like the ball of love & energy that you are. I saw you approach child after child in the cutest way at the fountain and simply want to wave hello… I hadn’t prepared myself for all of the dirty looks and all of the glares, not only from kids but from their parents too. I simply was not prepared for that at all. I don’t know if you’ll ever remember this and I hope that you don’t, but it’s something your father and I will never forget.

I was under the impression that kids played together, and that they made friends out of fellow little strangers. Today, my heart hurts. My heart hurts to think about the confusion that I could see on your face. My heart hurts even though you seemed fine all the same. My heart hurts because this is city life and I just don’t know if I’ll ever get used to it or be okay with it. Baby girl, I’ll always be here to play with you. I love you so damn much kid. Today my heart hurts. 

Motherhood is…


Motherhood is fun and silly and being a kid again… It’s empowering and uplifting and humbling. It can be lonely and trying and can bear heartbreak a hundred times over all in one week. It’s patience and happy-sad tears and relearning everything you thought you knew about the world. Motherhood is early mornings and cold coffee and being grateful for every drop of it. It’s loving someone more than you ever thought your heart could handle. Motherhood is the absolute best thing in the whole entire world… And It’s crazy to think I ever lived a life without this little tiny universe by my side. I love you MiaRose.  

C-Section Awareness Month is more important than you may think.

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#csectionawarenessmonth so I’m sharing this photo of my scar, my daughter and me. I’m all about normalizing breastfeeding and definitely aaaaaallll about normalizing birth. And I’m most passionate about shedding a positive light on c-sections. And we’re almost there! I see so much positivity and understanding toward them lately! Times are changing thank god. But it’s a big deal. It’s a major surgery. It takes a long time to heal. And some women don’t make it. Lots of babies don’t make it. Thinking of all the moms who have had to lie on that table and put 2 lives in their doctors hands…you are strong. You are brave! Fran says so! #csectionscar #postpartum #birthwithoutfear #empoweredbirthproject #4thtrimester #skintoskin #csectionbaby #takebackpostpartum #stretchmark

This picture above is a bonafide badass mama of 2 girls (Francesca pictured) by the name of @hillarycoke, check out her IG! She posts the sweetest pictures of her babes and all around cute mama life.

I love learning about birth. When I found out I was pregnant and I had no one to ask questions to, I read book after book to prepare myself for the big day. I hired a doula, I switched to a more supportive Doctor, I read up on birthing techniques that I thought may help me get through an unmedicated birth… But none of these things prepared me for if my birth plan didn’t pan out as I had expected.

Lucky for me, it did. But what if it hadn’t? What if something went wrong and I ended up needing an emergency c-section I was never prepared for? It made me realize that I didn’t have a clue about cesarean births. Just because I planned for something, that’s not always the way that the world works.

You see, I myself was a c-section baby. I was upside down and turned in the opposite direction… Not suitable for a vaginal birth. The Doctors told my mum that a c-section was her only option so that’s how she delivered her first baby and she’s still got the beautiful scar to prove it. Being a cesarean baby though, was the extent of my knowledge about this major surgery. It is estimated that 30% of births in the U.S. are c-sections. That’s a large enough number for anyone to be more aware of what they might ended up going through while delivering their little. I did a search on Instagram for the hashtag #csectionawarenessmonth and was surprised to find only 1,013 posts. I was more surprised to find even less for #csectionawareness, at 208. I wonder why in this massive mommy community are we not speaking up more about and bringing awareness to the subject of cesarean births when they account for almost 1/3 of the births in America?

I’m grateful that we live in an age where women are becoming much more aware of their options and choosing birth plans that they feel most comfortable with for them and their babies… I can’t help but wonder though, is this new awareness turning some women towards judgment rather than self empowerment over differences in preference?

Although I chose to have an unmedicated birth, I’m an advocate for ALL births and all birthing techniques. There is no right or wrong way to birth. Some women choose vaginal births with an epidural, some women choose vaginal births without an epidural, some women choose scheduled c-sections, some women choose vaginal births but change their minds to have a c-section, some women choose c-sections and end up having vaginal births instead, some women choose vaginal births but due to certain circumstances end up having emergency c-sections… NONE of these women are any better or worse than the other. Let us not forget that some of these women leave the hospital without babies in their arms. Some of these women themselves, don’t ever end up leaving the hospital due to terrible complications. These last two examples are the real tragedies, aren’t they?

Safe birth is the most important birth of all.

So whether you’re a mother giving birth in a pool at home, or you’re a mother giving birth in the middle of the woods surrounded by midwives, or you’re a mother surrounded by inquisitive students while giving birth at a teaching hospital (me), or you’re a mother giving birth with a small curtain hung above your belly, anxiously awaiting that little baby being lifted up and brought to your cute little capped head… You’re a MOTHER. You’re a mother. You’re a mother. And you deserve equal respect for bringing a new life into the world, regardless of how that came about. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again and again: Mothers are superheroes. We’re literally delivering and raising the future. All birth is “natural birth”, there really is no other type of birth. Rather than judge, I think it’s time for us to educate each other and ourselves. And wear your scars proudly, c-section mamas. They are your badges of honor. Share your story, we all have a lot to learn from each other.

Love to you mamas xo

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What is Forgiveness?

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Or should I call it ‘early morning SCRAMBLED thoughts from the Cold Coffee Club? Ha!

Honesty has always been an easy concept for me to grasp. At times I’m honest to a fault and it gets me into a lot of trouble. But honesty paired with forgiveness is a different story. I think of the two as oil & water.

I think it’s all too easy to say “Forgive, it will set you free”. I’ve heard this most of my life, I think most of us have… But my question is, what if it doesn’t? What if you’re too quick to forgive and then forgiveness just feels a lot more like being numb? What if you’re taught from when you were small that it’s your obligation to forgive to relieve the other party the pain of feeling guilt? It’s your responsibility to put your feelings on the back burner, for everyone else’s sake? And maybe it becomes that the only way you know how to forgive is to associate it and get it mixed up with ‘forget’. You make yourself forget and you never have to acknowledge that you were ever hurt at all. Like your own feelings never existed.

What if you’re sitting in adulthood and realizing you don’t know a damn thing about forgiveness or what it’s true definition is? You’re only just beginning to realize the weight of resentment, and the only reason you’re becoming aware is because it’s far past the point of painful. Forgetting isn’t real, no matter how badly you want it to be. There’s no such thing as an able minded person truly forgetting. The truth of your feelings seep down into your cells and build homes until you chose to acknowledge their existence. These are the vagabonds of our bodies, of our spirits, and of our minds. If you’re willing to absorb everything you’re not ready to ‘give’ but are forcing yourself to forgive, you’re poisoning yourself with your own thoughts and feelings. Hanging onto anger may feel like a hot coal at times, but not allowing yourself to be angry and instead being consumed with all of the things you never said, feels a lot like drowning.

I’m unlearning so many things in my life that I thought I knew for certain since childhood and I’ll tell you, this one isn’t going to be an easy lesson to undo. But as I grow as a mother, as a daughter, as a wife, as a woman, as a human being I’m becoming more aware of the fact that forgiveness is a one man show.

It has absolutely noting to do with the other person involved or their feelings at all. Maybe forgiveness is not an obligation but a beautiful hard earned gift to yourself. It’s a gift I’m learning that I deserve as much as anyone else.

Marriage & parenthood pull these things out of you though. Things you never knew existed. The will to be better, to be there, to be present… And to be truthful. When you’ve spent so much of your life walking away, but you neither have nor want that option any longer. As a mother,  I cannot possibly teach my daughter her worth and the worth of her feelings without first acknowledging my own. I cannot possibly teach her to forgive when she’s good & ready, if I myself am not able to do so. I look at my toddler and I see that she gets upset and she gets frustrated because she can’t vocalize what she wants yet, but she never questions her own anger. She never questions why she cries or why she’s upset or if it’s justified. She never questions how long she’s ALLOWED to feel what she’s feeling. She doesn’t need to. And that’s the amazing thing about children, if you’re willing to listen they can teach you the secrets of life. She doesn’t question her emotions because she doesn’t need to. She’s only 1.5 years old and she knows better than us about the ways of the world. As she gets older, I never want to stifle her wisdom… Only help her build upon it. I want her to know that being strong does not need to mean bottling things up. Being strong does not mean self sacrifice. She’s my daughter but I don’t need her to bear the weight of my world. I need to help her create her own and in the best way I know how. Every day I’m trying my best to do right by her, but at the end of the day that begins with learning how to do right by myself.

Here’s to another day of being teachers and students.

Love to you all xo