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The Me I’m Not

I haven’t known what to write lately, and hence, if you’ve noticed, haven’t written in a while. I could of course go on and on about Luciana-every day she does something that blows my mind, even if often by the end of the day when I go to write in her journal I can’t remember what it is. We shot a commercial together last weekend! And it could not have been better for her for two reasons. 1) We’ve been going through a spell (if after 6 weeks you can call it a spell, which I am starting to doubt) of her waking up at 5am. We had to leave at 5:15 that morning to get to location, so that was perfect. She’s such a method actress. We’re shifting her to a later bedtime, and I pray we start lasting til 6 again soon. 2) we shot at an AIRPORT. On the TARMAC. Do you know my daughter’s obsession with airplanes? Now you do. So this was, as you can imagine, a banner day. And she’s babbling and all over the place and simply the most beautiful soul I could be blessed enough to spend so much time with.

I am, however, feeling like anything but a supermom, and that’s the subject of today! I am here to confess that I have no idea how other mamas do it, how they seem to do it all. Blogger mommies, I have no idea how you post regularly. Working mommies, I have no idea how you get out of the house every day and look ready for the world. Chef mommies, I have no idea how you make amazing meals for your family every day. Because I don’t do any of these things. It feels like an either or or or most of the time: I’m either going to exercise or make a fabulous dinner. I’m either going to get out of the house on time or I’m going to look semi-put-together. I’m either going to post or run the 5 errands I’ve been meaning to do for a month. I’m either going to meditate or take some action on my career. Let alone stay current on blogs or ever go to Pinterest.

I know no one actually does it all. I know Instagram and Facebook and Twitter and Pinterest are tricky in that they make everyone else’s lives look perfect (See this wonderful post on that by a writer/blogger I am so loving). And I know they aren’t. It can be hard–for me, anyway–not to compare a bit and feel like everyone else has it all figured out.

And here’s where I am with it today: I told myself when Luciana turned one I’d get back to a yoga class once a week. I’m a teacher, for crying out loud. Hasn’t happened. I have been wanting to create “office hours” for myself where I put time every week into my career. Hasn’t happened. This is not to say it can’t happen, and I won’t make excuses for it; it simply hasn’t been my choice. What I’m learning about myself as a mama is that at least right now there is no Plan. There is no “this is how it’s going to be each week”. There’s just what I can do for today. My heart wants different things on different days; I’m so tired on certain days there’s no way anything creative is coming out of me on the page or on the plate; and there are days when I have a wonderful schedule worked out and then life throws a curve ball, and that’s that. I don’t get done tomorrow what I didn’t get done today. I maybe get it done sometime in the future and I have no idea when.

I’m guessing this is a time for more surrender. That there is a certain kind of grace, a certain kind of yoga, in knowing that this is my life right now and it’s beautiful and a big mess a lot of days. I’ll hang the new prints I have for her room…..sometime. Probably this year. I’ll look for a new theatrical agent…..sometime. Hopefully this year. She’s a 14-month old right now and I won’t get that Right Now back. My superhero cape might need to hang on the wall a while longer because at the moment my fingernails are uneven and my triceps could use some toning. The garage is a disaster and I’ve had Goodwill bags ready to donate for 2 months. I have made one new recipe in 3 weeks (it was this one and it was insane) and my family hasn’t gotten a batch of photos in…..? In theory I am trying to get back into TV work and….it’s a theory at this point. But I laugh every day with my baby. My husband and I have a date once a week. I’m working. With my baby! And in my heart I know all these facets of myself that I can’t seem to get a clear line to are still here, they’ll just catch the light at another time. Or so I’m going to believe.

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8 Responses

  1. juliana says:

    Melanie ~ This is HUGE! Even bigger than that 40 pound date book you used to lug around back in the day! The you are is such a beautiful, in-the-moment, surrendered you. It’s the you that is a mama first. And a you that is all but forced to live in the perfection of what is with out being able to control it. It’s like the Universe gave you the gift of picking you up, spinning you 180, and setting you back down in a world where jars and cds get to be all over the floor and babes get to pee on tables! Revel in it!! xo.

  2. juliana says:

    Melanie ~ This is HUGE! Even bigger than that 40 pound date book you used to lug around back in the day! The you you are is such a beautiful, in-the-moment, surrendered you. It’s the you that is a mama first. And a you that is all but forced to live in the perfection of what is without being able to control it. It’s like the Universe gave you the gift of picking you up, spinning you 180, and setting you back down in a world where jars and cds get to be all over the floor and babes get to pee on tables! Revel in it!! xo.

  3. juliana says:

    Melanie ~ This is HUGE! Even bigger than that 40 pound date book you used to lug around back in the day! The you you are is such a beautiful, in-the-moment, surrendered you. It’s the you that is a mama first. And a you that is all but forced to live in the perfection of what is without being able to control it. It’s like the Universe gave you the gift of picking you up, spinning you 180, and setting you back down in a world where jars and cds get to be all over the floor and babes get to pee on tables! Revel in it!! xo.

  4. Sofie says:

    Hi Melanie,

    What a lovely entry! You speak so eloquently about the trials and tribulations of what it takes to be a Mama–especially as an artist and specifically as an actor. So often I have to tell myself to “keep my eyes on my own paper!” And yet, I do that comparing and competition thing. I had two precious ones in a span of 19 months (they are now 2 1/2 and 10 months–girls) and I still beat myself up–over working out (or not), not breastfeeding long enough, not acting enough, practicing yoga (i’m certified, but teaching was never really a goal, more just to deepen my practice that is non-existent now). I love that you have weekly dates with your hubby. We have slacked off and have to resume, so thanks for sharing. Congrats on your Mommy and me commercial booking! That’s another thing my husband has tried to get me to do–get an agent for our oldest and yet, I have dragged my feet. I”m getting there! If you are ever in Pasadena or just feel like coming by, please, please do! All my best to you and I think at the end of the day if we do what my sister told me to do, we will be fine: “Your only job is just to love that baby. Everything else will follow.” I’m not kidding–it was the best advice ever–even when I am feeling like every other Mom in LA is so much cooler, hipper than me! xoxo, Sofie

  5. Mom/Mamgee/Francie says:

    My admiration grows and my heart softens and swells FOR YOU, more and more with time’s passage. You are brilliant and beautiful and never a mess and an incredible chef-ess and the most exquisite Mama I have ever known.
    Amen……
    And love.

    • Henk says:

      My daughter srettad school two weeks ago (they start the day after they turn 5 here in NZ) and already clothes are an issue! Her school is unusual in that they don’t have a uniform which is good in some ways (because they tend to be ugly and badly-fitting) but bad in others because it would take some of the arguments away in the mornings! But at least it means I can sew whichever Oliver+S clothes I want for her can’t wait for the knit patterns to be available btw!

  6. kristina says:

    I think YOU make it look easy, every day.

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