Writer's Block

Writer's Block

This is the second time I've committed the grave sin of allowing dust to gather on this space. There is so much to say, so much to remember. But there is very little of me to write it all down, to build castles of paragraphs. It's not laziness, I've realized. It's guilt. I shouldn't be staring at my laptop and pounding on the keyboard; I should be caressing the face of my son, carrying him every single moment, singing him nursery songs. I should hold my life instead of write about it. 

I look at him again. I've got it all wrong. His presence in my life -- his bold, perpetual presence -- must rouse me, not inhibit me. If I truly love him, I must pull out the best of me and stash the worst of me away. For there is a tiny tot that looks up to silly old me, asking me to show him the way in this mystifying world. I don't even know how to navigate it myself. But maybe writing will help. It should. It did before. It always does. 

So here's to the words that will do me a service, to the act that makes sense of all the contours and challenges, to the art that captures the beauty of a boy, of a family, of motherhood.

May I never give up on them. 

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Dear First Time Mom

Dear First Time Mom

If I could write a letter to my pregnant self, here's what I would say...

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Dear First Time Mom, 

Let me tell you the truth: motherhood is laced with idyllic stories and tempting fantasies. I'm looking at you now, your 8-month pregnant self, belly rounded with life and your head full of those half-truths. You're dreaming about wrapping your son in his muslin blankets, planning out his monthly birthdays, shopping for his stylish organic rompers. You're spending so much time looking at swimming trunks online, little shoes and backpacks for all his adventures. You wonder what toys and books and Disney movies you'll introduce to him first. You and your husband are brimming with excitement as this new chapter is finally within your horizon. 

But let me hold your hand, Deanne. Let me show you the realness, the rawness of it all.

Brace yourself. Are you ready?...

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Hi, Noah!

Hi, Noah!

I was expecting but everything that happened that day was unexpected. I woke up that morning dazed from lack of sleep, frustrated at the endless tossing and turning I did the previous night. Couple that with the horrendous traffic to our weekly hospital checkup and I had the kind of morning that I wanted to forget. 

Amidst the white walls of my doctor's clinic, we discussed the long wait our baby was making us go through. I was 39 weeks and 4 days and there were still no signs of labor. No contractions, no water breaking, no pain. Obsessed with getting things done on time, I was secretly worried. I had three days left to give my baby a chance to come into the world naturally. Otherwise, I would go under the knife. It seemed like it could happen in three days. It seemed like it couldn't, too. 

Before the ordered internal exam, my husband and I had lunch. Over our favorite spaghetti, fried chicken, and chocolate chip pancakes, I talked about my worries, he talked about his dreams, we talked about our parenthood. In spite of the fears, there was a lot of laughter over anything and everything. I palpably felt the chemistry that brought us together years ago. He reminded me that even if things don't go our way, we would still have Noah...

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An Ode To Us

An Ode To Us

We married with a plan; we continued with none. It was easy to tell ourselves that the next step was to have a baby, to grow a family, to show that indeed we were moving along a perfectly calculated timeline. But that didn't happen, of course. Things don't always go our way, of course. 

And looking back at the almost two years we had to just you and me, I'm ever so grateful that life brought us somewhere else. 

If I squint, I can find ourselves on our wedding day and remember exactly who we were in the folds and creases of our bodies and our souls: such wide-eyed, ecstatic newlyweds with a perfect image of each other, hoping and expecting nothing but the best. It was adorable; we were immaculate. And then life happened and hit us like a truck...

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London: The Greatest Of All

London: The Greatest Of All

As a naive teenager, I always thought New York City was the pinnacle of every traveler's wish list. Street lights, big dreams, all looking pretty, right? I spent most of my college life daydreaming about studying in the Empire State but when that opportunity finally came along, something quite funny happened. I was pulled to another direction... literally to the other side of the Atlantic. London, London, London... perhaps it was time to try something completely new. I gave it a shot and left my NYC dreams in the wake of my footsteps (and in the corridors of my college campus).  

And when I experienced London for half a year, in all its majestic, quaint, historic, organic, and wonderful glory, I knew that my wanderlust heart had finally found its home. 

One of the best things about London is that - this is going to sound so introverted - one can enjoy it in solitude. Virginia Woolf said, 'To walk alone in London is the greatest rest.' With all the cultural, artistic, historic, and culinary offerings this city boasts of, Woolf's statement still holds a strong footing...

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