Said my daughter as I tucked her in last night.

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Photo by Heather Ford on Unsplash

As a child, I often got bullied. I never stood up for myself. I internalized negative comment after negative comment. Last night, I shared this with my daughter.

I told her the story because she stood up to her bully.

She looked at me and said, “if I were with you when you were a little girl, I’d say don’t make fun of my mom.”

At that moment, I felt accomplished. I was proud to have raised an incredible human being with kindness and strength.

I tucked her in, told her I was proud of her, and kissed her good night. …

Last July was the last time we spoke.

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Photo by Lucas Lenzi on Unsplash

We became friends at 15. We’d take 4-hour train rides to spend time together during college. We planned each other’s weddings and baby showers. We were there for each other during deaths in the family. I never envisioned my life without her. We’d often joke that we’d be causing havoc in the same nursing home.

But now, we don’t speak. And I don’t know if we will again.

Somewhere in the past 5 years, things changed. …

In reference to my neighbor’s 13 year old daughter

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Photo by Laura Chouette on Unsplash

At a Halloween gathering in the neighborhood, I mentioned to my neighbor how her daughter had blossomed. She told me her daughter was dieting.

Dieting? Really? Since when did a 13 year old start dieting?

Another neighbor nodded her head in agreement. Dieting, it’s going to last her whole life.

What? Since when do you need to diet your entire life? Did I miss the memo? When did it become the norm for women to diet?

Yes I’ve dieted. I’ve avoided carbs. I’ve tried Paleo and Keto. I’ve done a juice cleanse. But I didn’t start these ridiculous things until my 20s. At 13, I wasn’t focused on dieting. …

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Photo by Damir Spanic on Unsplash

From ages 19–23, I dated a man accused of aggravated assault. Of our four years together, he was in jail for three of them. In order for you to understand how shocking this is, you need to know a little bit about my background. I’ll keep it quick.

I am first generation Indian American. …

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Image created by author

I refer to the image above as my FAD — Fulfillment Audit Dashboard. Each card contains a role I play. Within each card there are questions that allow me to determine if I have met the expectations I set for myself. Each day, I evaluate the expectations and if I have accomplished what I expected of myself.

Most times I don’t check the Personal Growth card. You can see that reflected above. …

And give me extra.

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Photo by Mohammad Fahim on Unsplash

I find it especially difficult to watch my weight during the winter months. From October to February, I consume more calories each month than I do the rest of the months. For some, a winter and summer wardrobe are essential for the change in weather. For me, it’s essential due to my fluctuation in weight.

A couple years ago, I became aware of this behavior. …

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A friend shared a post on Instagram about her postpartum depression. Halloween felt like a chore for her with a 6 month baby. She’s barely sleeping, she’s barely going out and she barely remembers her life before baby.

I immediately sent her a message. While I didn’t have postpartum, I’ve had my fair share of difficult days with motherhood. As I write that, I feel the need to say I love my children. But I don’t need to say it. It’s assumed. It’s not love I am writing about, it’s guilt.

Mother’s guilt is a mind fuck.

Despite meeting every need for your child, you are still plagued with guilt. Guilt for not reading a bedtime story. Guilt for not letting the kids play an extra 30 minutes. Guilt for putting them in front a tv so that you can wash dishes. Whatever you do, you are always plagued by guilt. …

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Photo by Karsten Winegeart on Unsplash

Around 6 months ago, I became obsessed with owning a cabin. I’ve spent each morning since looking at cabins on You Tube.

I love the cozy cabin feel.

I love going away for the weekend.

I love being outdoors.

Since I’ve decided to buy a cabin, interesting things started happening. I managed to save over $12,000 in 6 months.

I’ve become more aware of my expenses. I question whether I’m purchasing is bringing me joy or if it’s just another mindless purchase. I’ve limited unnecessary purchases.

With a one income household, I have managed to save over $12,000.

Unfortunately, it’s not enough for a down payment. …

It’s possible to do both.

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Photo by gryffyn m on Unsplash

Yesterday after a tough 4 mile hike, my family and I headed to the car. A group walked by wearing masks and a woman covered her mouth with her hand and looked the other way. She was over 6 feet away with a mask on.

I understand the fear associated with the pandemic. I have felt the same. But, there is also trail etiquette. If passing someone on a narrow trail, you can turn your face to pass but usually it is followed by a comment. “Good Morning”, or “Good Afternoon”. Sometimes even “Have a Nice Day”!

This has happened countless times hiking and while in the grocery store. People have become anti-social and it’s terrifying. …

Their growth is your responsibility.

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My children after 7 miles on the Appalachian Trail.

We hike every weekend. It’s a hobby I did with my husband before children, one I maintained while pregnant and one we continue to engage in as the children grow.

I love being outside and smelling the outdoors. I love being able to walk miles and miles and engage in conversation. I love feeling free.

No commitments. No milestones. We walk until we are ready to stop. …


Ren D

Indian American. Mama. Wife. VP of Product. I write about personal growth, life lessons, parenting and love.

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