Now that my ex-husband and I have an official agreement and are sending our divorce papers in, I am reaching the “end” of the divorce marathon and wonder how I will truly feel upon
that finish line. Interestingly, this is all happening right as the brand-new “divorce selfie” has made a splash on social media. I know without even asking that my ex would have no interest in taking a “divorce selfie,” but I remain divided about the idea. Would documenting that moment remind me later on down the line of why I decided to divorce and how we have done it so amicably? Or would it simply be one brief glimpse of the many emotions divorce has brought to the table for me? Don’t get me wrong. The divorce selfie is nice. Seeing people divorce amicably is always refreshing. However, I don’t think it’s truly indicative of the whole divorce process. To me, that selfie is just a snapshot of a long or for some, short journey to divorce. The questions I found myself asking were: Who were these people at the beginning of the process? The middle? Now at the end? What truly defines someone after divorce — what truly defines a divorced mom once that judge signs the official papers — is how she uses adversity and a tough situation to her favor, to transform her into a stronger, happier, and better person and mother. That sounds like an earful, doesn’t it? I’m sure you’re thinking I have high expectations and that may be so, but if a mom doesn’t decide to make changes whether large or small after divorce, then the whole experience and all its life lessons were wasted. So divorcing moms and divorced moms, if you don’t think you can manage to bust a smile with your official ex-husband for a divorce selfie, don’t sweat it! Not everyone is going to be happy on the final divorce day. In fact, some people are sad, and others are just relieved it’s finally over. Ignore the Internet sensations and perhaps questions from your friends on whether you’ll be taking a snapshot on the big day or how you handled the big moment. Be concerned with who you are now and where you plan to go after divorce.
(CNN) — There were no lactation rooms or dedicated spaces for breastfeeding mothers when Tara Ruby was on active duty in the Air Force from 1997
After her first son was born, Ruby remembers ducking into empty offices and bathrooms — anywhere she could find privacy for 20 to 30 minutes at a time to pump.
That’s why she was thrilled to learn about a new nursing room in the headquarters of Fort Bliss, the Army post in El Paso, Texas. It has comfortable chairs, a refrigerator for storing milk and a sink — small things that make a big difference when you need to expel breast milk every few hours.
All that was missing was a touch of decor on the bare walls. To make the room more inviting, Ruby, now an El Paso photographer, offered her services to donate pictures for the room.
Her vision: Portraits of uniformed soldiers breastfeeding their children.
“I thought it was be nice to offer some photographs as an additional show of support,” she said. “Seeing a picture like that helps mothers understand they can be an active soldier and provide support to their children.”
The shoot went off without a hitch, resulting in a photo that’s drawing praise for normalizing breastfeeding within the hypermasculine context of the military.
Fort Bliss Public Affairs and Garrison Command approved the shoot, an Army spokesman said. Through the Fort Bliss support group for mothers (full name, Pregnancy and Postpartum Physical Training Program; P3T for short) Ruby sought active duty soldiers to model in the photos. She thought she might get two or three volunteers; 10 women showed up for Thursday’s shoot with their children, proudly wearing their boots and camo.
“I think it’s great the Army is supporting active duty mothers,” Ruby said. “Sometimes, you hit a point in your military career where you have to choose between being a soldier and a mother, and a photo like this helps mothers so they don’t have to choose. ”
The 17-year-old Hillsboro High School senior wears skirts, makeup and a long wig styled with bobby pins. She even started using the girls’ locker room to change for gym class, despite the school’s offer of a single-occupancy restroom.
“I am a girl. I am not going to be pushed away to another bathroom,” she told CNN affiliate KPLR.
In less than two weeks, however, it became clear she was not welcome in the locker room.
Because Perry has male anatomy, many students simply see her as a boy in a wig changing in the girls’ locker room — and that makes them uncomfortable. They whispered about her in hallways, complained to faculty and told their parents, who brought it up at the school board meeting on August 27.
In a petition read aloud, one parent asked the board to stop extending privileges to “confused teenagers who want to be something they are not sexually” at other students’ expense. Another parent, insinuating that the board was avoiding liability, asked which side it would support if he sues them for violating his right to “parent” as he chooses.
When they didn’t get the response they had hoped for, a group of students organized a walkout Monday with their parents’ support. The protest made national headlines, casting a large spotlight on this small town of 2,900 people about 30 miles south of St. Louis with “more wild mice than people,” as one resident described Hillsboro.
In response, Perry and her supporters organized a rally Friday at Hillsboro Park where she addressed the controversy. She thanked her classmates for bringing attention to her story and giving her a platform “to be a part of helping and inspiring other trans and gender nonconforming young people.”
When you’re a new mom, your body can do strange things to you when you least expect it.
Just ask Jennifer Love Hewitt. She gave birth to her second child, a boy, not too long ago.
On Tuesday, she headed out to a meeting, and her breast produced some milk that leaked right through her outfit.
She covered for it nicely, and even tweeted about it.
Check it out, and have a little chuckle. Jennifer sure did.
— Jennifer Love Hewitt (@TheReal_Jlh) September 1, 2015
If your little interrogator has been pulling the line too far, here’s how you can reel it back in.
I was in the grocery store last week, listening to a multitude of beeps from scanners, when a new sound caught my ears. It was a kid, a preschooler, begging for one of those baby bottle suckers with the sugar inside. She wanted the cherry flavor. “Mommy, can I have this?” the little girl asked. “No, honey,” the mother smiled. “But, Mom, I don’t have one.” “We have plenty of sweets at home,” the mom reminded. “But I don’t have this one.” “I said no,” the mother replied, while looking through an entertainment magazine.
With having no luck breaking her mother down verbally, the little girl upped her ante. Her face turned red and words about unfairness and meanness erupted from her mouth.
And then her next strategy: crying. In between her cries and words, she delivered gasps of air, purely for effect.
“Just put it in the cart,” the mom replied. “But you can’t have it until after dinner.”
“Can I just have one bite in the car?” the little girl asked.
“We’ll talk about it when we get in the car.”
The little girl’s tears turned to smiles within less than one minute of her setting eyes on what she wanted.
Now, I’m far from a perfect parent, but I cringed knowing what this mother had just traded. Basically her soul. She traded a nasty temper tantrum for a life of bargaining between her and her little sweet pea. And the sad thing is, it doesn’t have to be that way, nor should it.
I wanted to hand the mom a laminated card with these five fail-proof sayings burned into the paper. They’ve worked for me for years and remind me of chocolate. Every single one of them is good and I pick which “flavor” depending on my mood.
Next time your mini cross-examiner is giving you the run-down, take charge, be a mom, and above all, be consistent.
If you say no, you better mean it. By changing your mind, your child has gained more than a piece of candy; they’ve gained the knowledge you can be broken down easier than a cardboard box.
Have fun practicing these phrases with your little interrogator: