And So It Was Blogged (XVIII)

Friday, August 13, 2010

Man. One word sums up this week for me: Motherlode. No, wait, in my head it’s more like: MOTHERLODE! Let’s get into this, so I can explain. Here’s the Best of the Blogs—my rundown of what I thought were the prime bloggy cuts from this 32nd week of 2010.

1. Pressure Points
We’ve all felt it creep into our minds, our bodies, our households: stress. And it’s deadly serious.

This month’s Wired cover story* by Jonah Lehrer’s (the big brain behind the psychology and neuroscience blog The Frontal Cortex, which we’ve mentioned a few times) delves into the dangers of chronic stress. It’s “the single most important variable in determining the length of a life,” Lehrer says. [*We linked to this story two weeks ago, but the information is important enough to repeat.]

Slate posted this story about the potentially life-threatening effects a stressful home can have on a child. And by stress, the study means sustained, ongoing stress, not the here-and-there spats you and your spouse might have at home.

Over on BabyCenter‘s recently revamped “Momformation,” there was another good one about stress. This time the study focused on its impact on fertility. The blog post, by Kimberly Seals Allers of Mocha Manual fame, specifically looks at stress, fertility and the African-American woman.

2. Beast of Burden
Earlier this week, my smart-cookie, younger sister and I were talking about the stress that can come from trying to do so much, trying do it all. It can weigh you down to the point where you’re no longer operating in optimal mode. You’re getting less done, and shaving years from your life in the process.

Far too many women, especially mothers,  I know are pushing the limits of what they can carry. The burden is practically breaking their backs.

Then yesterday my sister sent me a link to this spot-on post from Peace & Projects. It was as if blogger Melissa Gorzelanczyk had listened in on our convo.

3. Make It Work
At the start of the week, I mentioned the excellent closing keynote at BlogHer. When the floor opened to questions at the keynote, blogger The Mama Bee, who writes about working moms in the corporate world, stood up—her baby nestled in a carrier, grabbing at the mic—and raised the hot topic about “mothers being left behind” in the job market. The Mama Bee gets deeper into this discussion here on her blog.

Still on working mamas, Motherhood Uncensored is running a great series on Work At Home Moms. The latest one profiles BlogHer editor Rita Arens (whose personal blog Surrender, Dorothy is a definite go-to for smart, honest writing).

4. File Under “S” For Sigh
It was assault with a dirty diaper, folks. Yes, a woman in West Pennsylvania suffering from “road rage” took it upon herself to smear the other car involved in the traffic dust-up with a dirty diaper. Leaving it up to you to deliver your own punchline.

More for the file: The Wall Street Journal had this story about skinny jeans for toddlers. I said, skinny jeans for toddlers. Do I dare ask, what next?

5. Self-Promo Moment
The week kicked off with this: My photo, snapped by one of my favorite photo bloggers, is featured on her wonderful site. I’ve said it before, that woman Karen is a talent doing inspired work.

Then, I hit the Motherlode. As in, my guest post ran on the’s popular parenting blog Motherlode. I often mention the blog in these Friday wrap-ups. A few weeks ago I said, “One day the great Lisa Belkin will get wind of MMM and will stop by and leave a comment. Bigger! Maybe she’ll ask me to guest post.” Later that afternoon, Lisa left a comment asking me to contact her!

My essay has sparked some good discourse online and off. I’m honored and excited by all of it.

That’s it for this week. Thanks for stopping by. See you Monday, yes?

  • 1
    Erica says:

    Congrats on the guest post! I’m off to read it now.

  • 2
    Maura says:


    I love your blog and am so happy for you that your excellently-expressed and IMPORTANT voice is being heard by an ever-increasing audience. I totally support your decision to embrace the teachable moment–even though I would also totally understand and support letting people know how awful it feels to hear that question. Perhaps both can live in one moment.

  • 3
    40 but likes to think she's 28 says:

    Well, I’m very happy that you got that guest post since it led me this way.

    As to the specifics about the post on Motherlode, I can just say that naturally, we all see things through our personal lenses. I’ve been asked the same question and my daughter is practically my twin – with chubbier cheeks. I’ve also been in the position where I assumed a child was the care-taker’s own; the response cured me of ever assuming THAT again. Phew! I haven’t been called such nasty names outside of the high school in which I taught!

  • 4

    Congrats about the guest post! Will check it out for sure! Sorry to have missed you at Blogher. I don’t know about you, but I was in a total daze most of the time.

    • 4.1
      Ms. Mack says:

      Thank you, Paula! There were so many people I missed at BlogHer. But somehow that Jimmy Dean’s alarm clock found me.

  • 5
    Nailah says:

    Congrats on the guest post again! And thanks for the shout-out.

    So…if I had a little girl I would TOTALLY buy her skinny jeans! They look so cute. Lol