Give Yourself Permission To Change… And Not Pack Early

“How may of you are the parent you thought you’d be before you had kids?”

That’s the question I opened with last weekend when I spoke about giving ourselves permission to change at the Great Cloth Diaper Change in Denver, presented by Kanga Care.

Nobody raised their hand. Shocker.

1397495_625553184187860_796742699911755857_oPhoto by Swinson Studios, Denver

Sometimes the words I say to other people are exactly the words I need to hear for myself. It seems weird to be speaking on a topic, like I’m some sort of expert, when it’s a journey I’m still on.

I still have to remind myself it’s okay to change, and that change is not an indication of failure on my part. I spoke briefly last weekend about how hard the first couple years of motherhood were for me because anytime I was faced with having to change my beliefs about something, or my approach, it made me feel like  a failure.

But once I learned to embrace that change, and give myself permission for it to happen, it became freeing.

I was once the kind of person who planned long in advance for things like work trips. I had post  it notes to remind me of to-do lists, and packing lists that I checked twice.

I type this now, 4 hours out from flying out to another work conference (Mom 2.0 in Atlanta). I’m half packed, I don’t have a plan, I haven’t glanced at the schedule yet. I spent a lot of yesterday feeling guilty for not getting media kits printed in time, and not yet buying classroom treats for Kendall’s birthday on Friday.

Oh yeah. He turns 6 on Friday, and I’m going to be gone.

But as I started to reflect on what I was going to write about for this post, the message I spoke about last weekend, it was a good reminder to me that it’s okay if this stage in my life doesn’t have room for to-do lists and packing lists. It’s okay if my work/life balance right now means we had cake and presents with Kendall last night, and his dad will visit his class tomorrow with treats he’ll pickup from Target today.


This is one of the best lessons motherhood has taught me, and I hope it’s something the attendees of the GCDC in Denver last weekend will take to heart.

Last weekend’s travel was fun… and exhausting… but fun! I got to take Lowell with me. On a plane. Twice. I had wine the 2nd flight.

He was mostly really, really good.

And of course, he did his part to try and break the Guiness World Record for the most cloth diapers changed at one time around the world.

741268_625554014187777_2655475856428582052_oPhoto By Swinson Studios, Denver

It was fun to spend some time one-on-one with him. Let me tell you, after you have 3 kids, one baby is…. still a little hard, but hey, TWO HANDS and both eyes all for him!


And yes, OF COURSE he wore his farm overalls from Joules USA again, and I was very comfy in a breastfeeding friendly dress and cardigan they sent me.

A HUGE thank you to the Kanga Care team, especially Julie, for having me out for the event, and letting me stay at their house! Traveling with a mobile infant is hard enough. It’s nice to have a real house to escape to, one with pack and plays and an endless supply of wine.

Kanga Care is the maker of Rumparooz cloth diapers. We just started using their brand with Lowell, and we are big fans!



I keep hoping the cloth diapers will slow this kid down a little. Maybe we can stuff them with quarters? Because this? No bueno, folks. He turned 9 months old yesterday.


50 Things to Do Before You Deliver: The First Time Moms Pregnancy Guide
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  1. I think Lowell looks just like Scott 🙂

    Yes, I need to give myself permission to change, and forgive myself for not doing all the things. Motherhood is hard. Thanks for the reminder.

  2. With my first son I was determined to breastfeed forever. It was really hard and we had trouble. At 5.5 months I decided to make the switch to formula. I was devastated. I felt like the world’s worst mother and cried for a week. Fast-forward two years later and we have a new baby and a new set challenges. I’ve finally realized that some things don’t have to be all or nothing. I’m not a horrible person if we use cloth diapers only part-time. I’m not doing my daughter a disservice by supplementing with formula so she can continue to breastfeed. I’m a Type A person and don’t like when things don’t go the way I planned, but I’m learning to change. 🙂

  3. Emily Wilson Hadley on

    Love that outfit! He looks so squishy! And you’re so right; NOBODY parents how they thought they would. How can anyone predict how they’ll respond to their precious dumpling kicking baby brother in the face at bed time, after you’ve repeatedly asked for calm/less donkeyish behavior around the baby? (If you’re me, and at the end of a long day, you gently shove said dumpling off the bed, while saying ‘bye bye, you’re done here’ in the sweetest voice possible under the circumstances. Sigh.)

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