Author: Jillian Gilchrest

Mam. Who, Me?

It happened, and it keeps happening, even when I’m not with the kids. A seemingly harmless, three letter word, “mam.” But when spoken, and to me, “mam” feels like nails on a chalk board. Really, “mam,” how old do you think I am?! “Mam” immediately acknowledges that I am older than the person addressing me, old enough in fact to be referred to as “mam.” My visceral reaction to being called, “mam” strikes me odd because I actually don’t mind getting older. As I age, I gain confidence and am comfortable with who I am and how I live. I am passionate about my work and I have a family I adore. I even enjoy working out and am proud of my level of fitness. So then, why does being called “mam,” take my breath away? When I was in my early 20’s, my dad told me that he didn’t feel a day older than 23…in his mind that is. His comment made me laugh, but I have never forgotten it. And, as I age, it makes more sense to me. So, even though I drive a car pool, fold laundry on Friday nights, find a strange sense of pride in making school lunches, and wear a sensible winter coat, in my head, I’m still me. I really don’t place an age on that me, so when a young adult...

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Feminist Mom Frustrated: Think This One’s Pretty Obvious

God dammit. I was really hoping that my daughter, now 4, and son, now 7, would grow up in a culture free from sexual violence, or at least significantly different than the culture I came of age in. I’m an optimist by nature, so I recognize that this hope was fairly lofty, but “live the life you imagine,” right? Post 11/8 though, this hope is shot to hell and I am faced with the realization that my innocent children will actually take part in this culture-a rape culture, where women remain second-class citizens. For those with children older than...

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Sister Moms

Over the years, whenever I’ve had an extra mom or two around, I’ve mentioned in jest how I sort of understand where the “sister wives” are coming from, minus the sharing a husband thing. Well, this year, I’m participating in a carpool with two other families, and I am just so grateful to be sharing the load with two amazing women and our three husbands. All three of our families were fortunate to receive slots for our preschoolers in a public magnet school. The only downside (which feels awful even saying because free is free) is that the trip...

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Couch Cuddles

To cuddle, they say, is to hold someone close. To hug and to snuggle those you love most. There are two in particular who I love to cuddle. We three come together before bed to snuggle. On half of the couch we all squish together, wrapped in a blanket in all types of weather. We enjoy this most loving and intimate time. I’m so very grateful to call them both...

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Coach

About a year and a half ago, I had some down time at work and found myself in conversation with a colleague about our sons, roughly around the same age. Both boys were playing t-ball and she was coaching her son’s team. She was explaining how challenging it was to be the only mom volunteering to coach baseball and how uncomfortable she felt at the training meeting, being the only woman among a gym full of men. It was at that moment, as she was speaking, that I questioned (out loud mind you) why I hadn’t even considered coaching....

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