The Pact: My Commitment To Myself After Divorce

A lot of people fumble with their New Year’s Resolutions, but if you know me you would know that I am dead determined. Almost every goal I have sought after,  I have accomplished in some shape or form.

As a kid, I decided I wanted to be an actor, comedienne, and professional writer.

I have gotten paid to do all three, and am currently a professional writer. Am I Amy Poehler or Charles Dickens? Well not yet but if I commit to something basically, I do it.  Sometimes I don’t let go of a situation or goal when I should, but most times if I am passionate about something, I give every breathe I’ve got and I’m full of hot air 🙂

So when the New Year approached, I decided to make a pact with myself. Why? Because I finally feel happy. Divorce and finances a bit of a shamble to say the least, I am happy and nothing can get in my way of this. I don’t want to go down the rabbit hole so I made this pact:

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4 Reasons Why Staying at a Mental Home is Easier Than Being a Working Mother

4 Reasons Why Staying at a Mental Home is Easier Than Being a Working Mother

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When I was a teenager, I had a brief month-long stay at a psychiatric treatment center. I was depressed, experienced rape and abuse, and was “experimenting” with substances to medicate those terrible experiences. It was no joke, and to be honest, I don’t think these hospitals helped at all. For me, it was just a month-long babysitter and didn’t do zilch. Of course, I wasn’t ready to deal with those problems really so maybe that was why, but the point is…

If you are a working mother, you might want to consider visiting the mental home. Life is easier there.

Here’s why: Continue reading

75 Years of Motherhood: A tribute to my mom, the best woman ever who taught me the value of the F word.

I don’t know if you all knew, but the most amazing woman in the world will be 75 years old next week.

That woman happens to be my mother, the original Strong Woman.

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My mom was raised in Brooklyn, from a family of Scottish and Irish (tad bit German too) descent. She started out with her grandparents because her mother (possibly struck with PTSD and PPD after my mom’s twin brother was stillborn) just up and handed her off. A few years later, her mother came and took her back.

My mom lived a real-world Cinderella story: “Every Saturday yaw Grandmother would go get her hair done while I scrubbed the flaaaws (floors in Brooklyn-ese) and cleaned the house.” Continue reading

Confession of an Ex-Self Hating Jew: On Rosaries, Kikes, and Noses, a Childhood Tale

In the spirit of Hanukkah, I decided to let you all in on an excerpt and essay from my memoir, about growing up amongst anti-Semitism, my family, and questioning religion. From growing up with Christian lust, to my family history,  to figuring out who “Jesus” was, to local Anti-Semitism, it’s all here.

Please share and enjoy! There won’t be many more excerpts put up in the spirit of the book’s publication.

Oh, and a happy Hanukkah to all who are celebrating!

Confession of an Ex-Self Hating Jew: On Rosaries, Kikes, and Noses

I am six years old when I discover the most beautiful necklace hanging off of my best friend Danielle’s bedpost. It’s a long string of pearly pink beads that has a cross hanging from it. When I go to look at the stunning jewels, my eyes float down to the cross, and that’s when I see him.

He is a miniaturized version of a man with his head hanging so low, it looks as if it could roll right off his neck. This is when I notice that his arms and legs are stuck to the cross beams, as if he is a dead bug stuck to a flyswatter. The necklace seems to be protecting Danielle’s bed.

“Where did you get this necklace? It’s so pretty! Let me wear it,” I go to grab it off her bedpost, and before I can put it around my neck, Danielle puts her hand out to stop me.

She says, “This is a rosary, you pray with it.”

Pray with it? It looks too pretty to not wear.  Pretty things are for wearing, are for making women look beautiful. I am certain of that.

“This is Jesus here, on the cross, the son of God,” Danielle answers my questioning face.

Oh. Jesus. That guy. Except for Danielle doesn’t pronounce his name the way my mom does when she’s agitated. Danielle says his name very seriously. Unlike my mom who yells Jesus’ name when she’s mad as in “Jesus, Mary, and Joseph,” Danielle uses him as jewelry for her prayers so God will listen to her. I find it fascinating, and wonder what else might there be for me to know about this mysterious religion.

Doubting the existence of such a strange rule, I question her again.   Continue reading

The Rough Road of the Memoir

I just wrote 3 additional pages to my memoir tonight. I am close to finally finishing my baby, and I have been working on this for a long time.

People wonder why it takes so long, yet this isn’t fiction. I am not dealing with characters from my mind or imagination. If I were, I could treat them with a different perspective and emotional stance, but since I am writing my own story, it is a whole different ball game.

Tonight I was working on a section that covered a sad and dark time in my life, and after three pages, I just couldn’t keep going for the night. It is not always fun to write about these things so honestly, yet I feel in order for the book to be authentic and worthwhile in a literary fashion, I have to be distant enough to provide a perspective that I didn’t have while in the actual situation. And even though I am more than distant from the scenario I wrote about, since I am having a bad day, I find it hard to face the page for extended periods of time.

One of the things I love about doing comedy is that I can take dark moments and make light (er) of them. It is a refreshing break for me, and provides me with a different medium in which to be artistic. It also makes me happy, usually, although I sometimes find the atmosphere of comedy to not be so awesome.

Writing a book however, is such a mentally and emotionally fulfilling project, but it is one that takes time.

You need to have space from yourself in order to craft a memoir that can really bring depth, humor, and honesty, in my opinion.  From the first day I started until now, I can tell you that I have finally learned what the real heart of the book is, and where the meat of my story is. If someone asked me years ago to write a book jacket for my upcoming memoir, I would have panicked. Now that I have spent  a great deal of time writing this book along with more time and perspective, that book jacket doesn’t seem so daunting.

I know the story so intimately not only because it is my own, but because I have spent so much time crafting it, that I know what is it that needs to be told, and for the most part, what doesn’t.

But on days when I am feeling sad or doubtful, it is hard to face the page with the same expertise and skill that I normally have.

This project has been such a big deal to me, and I cannot wait to have it published, and it will be.

There is no try, only do.