Children

‘I was shackled to this infant while my fiancé escaped to his 9 to 5 job. Her arrival spun me into a fear I’d never known.’: New mom copes with the reality of motherhood, ‘Most days I could barely get past my mailbox’

“As an only child raised by a single father, I was raised to be an independent woman. I was limitless. My fiancé barely tamed me, knowing if I set my mind to it, it would happen. The mundane cycle of robotic caring for my newborn was chipping away at my Gypsy soul. I felt trapped and terrified. I could no longer come and go as I please. My nipples bled, my breasts were engorged and I wanted to give up. I thought I could give birth and return to school only 10 days later.”

‘Dear mom, there is so much I didn’t understand back then, but now I do.’: Woman pens sweet letter to mother after giving birth

“I never understood why you would sit with your head in your hands. Now I understand, you were hiding your tears. I never understood why sometimes your hugs lasted that little bit longer. Now I know, you needed them more than me. I never understood why when I was hurt I only wanted you. Now I know, you’re the safest place I’ve ever known.”

‘If only the kids would listen and I had time for my marriage.’ I could see what I wanted in the future.’: Woman learns true hope is not found in future endeavors, but is actually ‘derived from what I already have’

”If only my life could keep up with my constantly changing standards and expectations.’ That last one hit me hard. This year, the sweet light of the Christmas tree hasn’t felt so magical. In fact, I’ve been feeling a little hopeless. And it has taken so many empty mornings for me to realize my hope has been misplaced all along.”

‘I carried his ashes. I carried them in a box all over the airport. I didn’t want to put him on the floor. It didn’t feel right.’: Woman’s journey to return her husband’s ashes to his home

“Before we boarded our plane in Atlanta, I took his remains to the exact spot we touched when he flew into Atlanta. I laid the box down on the exact tile we stood on. The captain came by to give his condolences and let us know that he was honored to take him home and that we would get him there as fast as possible. I couldn’t even squeak out a word when he came by. I just nodded and cried.”

‘I am a C-section-having, formula-feeding, disposable diaper, working kind of mom. I do not regret it.’: Mom explains her parenting choices, ‘Please respect my parenting views as I’ve always tried to respect yours’

“I discipline my girls. I am pro-vaccine. I typically use a small chair I refurnished titled, ‘Thinking Spot.’ I work so my girls will grow up seeing I am working in my dream job, literally. I want them to know it’s possible to have their dream, just as I’m living mine.”

‘I was offered a ‘fashion model’ job. Naive, I took it. It was a false company ran by dead people in other states.’: Human trafficking survivor speaks out, ‘I never thought it would happen to me’

“I was a junior in college who’d just lost my scholarship. I needed money to pay my tuition, so I took the job. I was a small town girl, self-absorbed in my own world. Maybe I was too young, or too naive. I thought it was a ‘black or hispanic problem’ in the urban city. Over the course of a few months, my life came to an abrupt halt. This was anything but a modeling agency.”

‘I feel off. It could be minor. I don’t know. I just know something is off.’ My friend diagnosed me with perimenopause. ‘That’s not what I’m dealing with.’: Woman anxiously awaits results over holidays to see if cancer has returned, ‘We don’t want to worry our kids’

“Christmas feels different this year. I’m having a really hard time getting into the holiday spirit. Hours after getting my pelvic ultrasound done, my phone rang.You never want to hear words like complex, stat, and concern from your doctor. I decided to not tell a soul. I thought I was being brave. I thought I was saving others from getting all worked up. I thought I was being selfless. Ryan and I have been talking about when to tell our kids, or if we even should.”

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