Remember me? The one who dealt with flaky dates and getting ghosted, before ultimately finding love and getting married? I’m back, and I’m a mom now.
From 2012-14, I wrote a column for CultureMap chronicling the triumphs and travails of dating in Austin, called "Sex and the Capital City." It ended after my now-husband and I met (thanks to the column), started dating, and moved in together. In 2016, we got married in an intimate ceremony in Salado, jetted off to our honeymoon, and returned to Austin to begin our lives together.
A mere three months after our wedding, however, we got a little surprise — a positive pregnancy test. And as I write this, my 14-month-old is napping, which, as any parent of a toddler can attest, is the only quiet part of my day.
But let me backtrack a bit. I always wanted to be a mom, but I never dreamed of being a mom. So, when we were surprised by impending parenthood seemingly a heartbeat after our honeymoon, I wasn’t quite sure how to feel. “Are you so excited!?” was the thing I heard most. “Yeah!” I replied, almost half-heartedly, not quite sure what else to say.
Instead, we kept the life changes coming. I left my job and accepted a new position in San Antonio. A new start for a new family. It didn’t matter that we were leaving my hometown and our family and friends behind to embark on what is quite possibly the most isolating thing a young-ish couple can embark on. But we had each other, we had family in San Antonio, I had a stable job, and we had a charming rental home in Alamo Heights. It was all working out.
Until it didn’t. In a punchline-that-isn’t-a-punchline story I almost can’t tell without a chuckle, our house got destroyed by a tornado that hit Alamo Heights during the seventh month of my pregnancy. One minute, you’re home watching HBO, and the next, your roof is peeled off like the top of a yogurt container and many of your prized possessions are goners. We were the hardest hit in the neighborhood, my rounded belly landing us on the front page of the newspaper and on the evening news.
We took this as a sign to cut and run, to head back home so that we could welcome our son in the town we loved. And we did. And every cliché they tell you about how much your life changes when you hold your newborn child for the first time rings true. We were smitten, sleep-deprived, and changed forever.
In addition to welcoming a new human, I’ve recently entered the world of full-time freelance, juggling stay-at-home motherhood with the launch of a new business. I ditched my commute in favor of the fast and furious freelance world. Bye-bye business casual, hello dry shampoo.
Like many in my situation, I’m learning as I go. I don’t claim to know everything about being a parent, by any stretch of the imagination. But I’ve figured out a few things along the way, and I look forward to sharing them with you. Plus, I’ll throw in some occasional picks for parenting tiny Austinites that won’t make you want to blow your Elmo-loving brains out. You know what they say: it takes a village.
Join me, won’t you?