It Takes Faith to Limbo

I was very flexible when I was young. Limbo was a party game that seemed to happen often, and I prided myself on how good I was at it. I could sashay under that pole with the best of them. Recently, I tried to limbo again, but my middle-aged body sounded its alarm alerting me […]

An Open Adoption: Becoming a Hardacker

“All my problems started the day I became a Hardacker,” our daughter told our counselor. We laughed when we heard the comment. Our daughter is adopted and we have an open adoption with her birth-parents. We met them prior to her birth through an adoption agency and hit it off right away. They said we […]

Foster Care: More Than I Can Handle

Broken bones and bruising on a child who can barely pull himself up is more than I can handle. A one-month-old baby with a history of sexual abuse is more than I can handle. Foster care is more than I can handle. A few weeks ago I was sharing about the trials of our foster […]

When Mommy Culture Turns on Itself

It was four o’clock in the morning and already my second time awake.  My son nursed contently, so in hopes of staying lucid, I decided to hop on Facebook and click on my local mom’s group page. The first post on the group’s page wass a question to all the moms on the site—hundreds of […]

Learning to Dwell in a World of Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches

“Dwell.” The word hit my ears in a wooden classroom nestled amongst a wooded college campus and mansions of the uber-rich. Then, it seemed, I had all the time in the world to dwell. The words from novels and poetry uncurled, sinking directly into my poet’s heart. Words were the quickest way to dwell in […]

10 Reasons Why Parenting My Dog is Better than Parenting a Baby

My favorite season of the year is here. No, I’m not talking about pumpkin-spiced-anything. I’m talking about that time of year when all my friends decide it’s time to get a puppy and I get all the perks of puppy snuggles with none of the pee. So while many people speak of parenting in terms […]

The Birds and the Bees and Belonging as a Family

“Mama, where do babies come from?” I stared at my five-year old son: he wasn’t really asking me about the birds and the bees, now was he? He looked at me, eyes wide in expectation. “Well buddy,” I replied, taking a deep breath, “babies come from their mommies’ tummies.” I felt far from ready for […]

Is Masturbation Okay? . . . and Other Thorny Questions

The Mudroom is excited to be joining the likes of The Rumpus, the Chicago Tribune, and the Washington Post. We’re starting our very own advice column, “Dear Portia.” Every month, we’ll cover questions related to our monthly theme. First up is sex, sexuality, and singleness. Do you have questions about your sex life, about singleness, […]

The First Day and All Those After

I imagined how it would go down more ways than I can count. I spent the week before with a pained jaw, a pit in my stomach, and a headache. Would I have mimosas with friends after the drop off? Would I hit the gym, relishing my child free morning? Perhaps spend the day writing? […]