At every stage of motherhood, I feel my mom's absence all over again

Losing a parent so young is the antithesis of the gift that keeps on giving. Every special occasion, every achievement, every milestone in my life is a reminder that she's not here.

At every stage of motherhood, I feel my mom's absence all over again

My mom died of breast cancer when I was 10 years old. This is a sentence I have grown used to saying, with a practiced neutral expression and a finality that deters further questions. Losing a parent so young is the antithesis of the gift that keeps on giving. Every special occasion, every achievement, every milestone in my life is a reminder that she's not here.

I felt this even more keenly when I was pregnant with my first child. Midwives and ultrasound techs would ask me, "Is your mom looking forward to the baby coming?" Colleagues told me, "You'll be grateful for your mom after the baby is born." Even the books I read talked about how the bond between a woman and her mother is often strengthened after the latter experiences childbirth.

But she wasn't there.

She wasn't there when I wanted to ask if her pregnancy was like mine, if she experienced sickness as badly as I did, if she had the same nerves about becoming a mother, and how she dealt with working while pregnant. I didn't get to discuss birth choices with her, and she wasn't waiting anxiously outside as my son arrived in the world (as the baby books assured me she would be).

Afterward, when motherhood wasn't quite what I expected, she wasn't there to listen and empathize and tell me whether she felt the same when I was born. She couldn't help me navigate my new identity as a mother, and reassure me that I'd come out the other side. I wasn't alone; I had my husband and my dad and my stepmom—but I wanted my mom.

My mom was present in my life for only 10 years, much of that punctuated by her illness—she was sick for around five years before she died. I don't recall specific events or conversations with her, but what I do remember is constantly feeling loved, cherished, and wanted. She made me feel like I was the center of her universe, like she had never encountered a more perfect being than me.

She was the center of my own small universe, too—a brightly burning sun. And when she died, the light in my life went out.

She made everything fun; her imagination and energy seemed limitless. She encouraged our shared love of reading and writing, passions that have accompanied me into adulthood.

She brought notebooks home from the school where she worked and helped me imagine stories to fill their blank pages.

She wrote journals, including an account of my own babyhood. She penned a beautiful collection of letters to me when she knew she would not live to see me grow up. I still find it hard to read them.

When my husband and I decided to have children, I knew right away what kind of mother I wanted to be. I would love my kids fiercely and openly. I would encourage them to explore everything the world has to offer. I would be their solid foundation, their safe place to fall. I would be the kind of mother my own mom was, the kind I know she would have continued to be throughout my life.

I'm not always that mother—I have three children now and a full life, and I am human. But I have this blueprint, which I come back to when times are hard and I am losing my way as a parent.

I also know there must have been times when my mother wasn't that mother either, when she was frazzled and stressed and sick. Despite this, I never doubted her unconditional love and belief in me, and that's what I want my own children to carry into their adulthood.

It's also important to me that my children know they have a third grandmother, even though she isn't here with us. We talk about Grandma Jane often and look at photos.

Now that our oldest son is six, he understands a little more that his mommy grew up without her own mommy. Last week, he stated out of the blue, "Mommy, I feel sad that your mommy died when you were little. That's really sad for you." His innocent empathy almost undid me, and I struggled to hold my emotions together as I cuddled him close.

My mother has been gone for more than 20 years, yet at every stage of my own mothering journey, I feel her absence all over again.

Mothering without my mother is a difficult journey, but having my children has been healing in so many ways. After my mom died, it felt like I could only remember the sad times—seeing her in the end-of-life hospice, her last visit home, her funeral. But watching my children often sparks lovely memories from my own childhood, and I can now talk about my mom without feeling overwhelmingly sad.

Most of all, my mother gave me a valuable roadmap for my parenting journey through her own mothering of me. And for that, I will always be thankful.

You might also like:

In This Article

12 baby registry essentials for family adventures

Eager to get out and go? Start here

Ashley Robertson / @ashleyrobertson

Parenthood: It's the greatest adventure of all. From those first few outings around the block to family trips at international destinations, there are new experiences to discover around every corner. As you begin the journey, an adventurous spirit can take you far—and the best baby travel gear can help you go even farther.

With car seats, strollers and travel systems designed to help you confidently get out and go on family adventures, Maxi-Cosi gives you the support you need to make the memories you want.

As a mom of two, Ashley Robertson says she appreciates how Maxi-Cosi products can grow with her growing family. "For baby gear, safety and ease are always at the top of our list, but I also love how aesthetically pleasing the Maxi Cosi products are," she says. "The Pria Car Seat was our first purchase and it's been so nice to have a car seat that 'grows' with your child. It's also easy to clean—major bonus!"

If you have big dreams for family adventures, start by exploring these 12 baby registry essentials.

Tayla™️ XP Travel System

Flexibility is key for successful family adventures. This reversible, adjustable, all-terrain travel system delivers great versatility. With the included Coral XP Infant Car Seat that fits securely in the nesting system, you can use this stroller from birth.


Add to Babylist

$849.99

Iora Bedside Bassinet

Great for use at home or for adventures that involve a night away, the collapsible Iora Bedside Bassinet gives your baby a comfortable, safe place to snooze. With five different height positions and three slide positions, this bassinet can fit right by your bedside. The travel bag also makes it easy to take on the go.


Add to Babylist

$249.99

Kori 2-in-1 Rocker

Made with high-quality, soft materials, the foldable Kori Rocker offers 2-in-1 action by being a rocker or stationary seat. It's easy to move around the home, so you can keep your baby comfortable wherever you go. With a slim folded profile, it's also easy to take along on adventures so your baby always has a seat of their own.


Add to Babylist

$119.99

Minla 6-in-1 High Chair

A high chair may not come to mind when you're planning ahead for family adventures. But, as the safest spot for your growing baby to eat meals, it's worth bringing along for the ride. With compact folding ability and multiple modes of use that will grow with your little one, it makes for easy cargo.


Add to Babylist

$219.99

Coral XP Infant Car Seat

With the inner carrier weighing in at just 5 lbs., this incredibly lightweight infant car seat means every outing isn't also an arm workout for you. Another feature you won't find with other infant car seats? In addition to the standard carry bar, the Coral XP can be carried with a flexible handle or cross-body strap.


Add to Babylist

$399.99

Pria™️ All-in-One Convertible Car Seat

From birth through 10 years, this is the one and only car seat you need. It works in rear-facing, forward-facing and, finally, booster mode. Comfortable and secure for every mile of the journey ahead, you can feel good about hitting the road for family fun.


Add to Babylist

$289.99

Pria™️ Max All-in-One Convertible Car Seat

Want to skip the wrestling match with car seat buckles? The brilliant Out-of-the-Way harness system and magnetic chest clip make getting your child in and out of their buckles as cinch. This fully convertible car seat is suitable for babies from 4 lbs. through big kids up to 100 lbs. With washer-and-dryer safe cushions and dishwasher safe cup holders, you don't need to stress the mess either.


Add to Babylist

$329.99

Tayla Modular Lightweight Stroller

With four reclining positions, your little ones can stay content—whether they want to lay back for a little shut-eye or sit up and take in the view. Also reversible, the seat can be turned outward or inward if you want to keep an eye on your adventure buddy. Need to pop it in the trunk or take it on the plane? The stroller easily and compactly folds shut.


Add to Babylist
$499.99

Tayla Travel System

This car seat and stroller combo is the baby travel system that will help make your travel dreams possible from Day 1. The Mico XP infant seat is quick and easy to install into the stroller or car. Skipping the car seat? The reversible stroller seat is a comfortable way to take in the scenery.


Add to Babylist
$699.99

Modern Diaper Bag

When you need to change a diaper during an outing, the last thing you'll want to do is scramble to find one. The Modern Diaper Bag will help you stay organized for brief outings or week-long family vacations. In addition to the pockets and easy-carry strap, we love the wipeable diaper changing pad, insulated diaper bag and hanging toiletry bag.


Add to Babylist

$129.99

Mico XP Max Infant Car Seat

Designed for maximum safety and comfort from the very first day, this infant car seat securely locks into the car seat base or compatible strollers. With a comfy infant pillow and luxe materials, it also feels as good for your baby as it looks to you. Not to mention the cushions are all machine washable and dryable, which is a major win for you.


Add to Babylist
$299.99

Adorra™️ 5-in-1 Modular Travel System

From carriage mode for newborn through world-view seated mode for bigger kids, this 5-in-1 children's travel system truly will help make travel possible. We appreciate the adjustable handlebar, extended canopy with UV protection and locking abilities when it's folded. Your child will appreciate the plush cushions, reclining seat and smooth ride.


Add to Babylist
$599.99

Ready for some family adventures? Start by exploring Maxi-Cosi.

This article was sponsored by Maxi-Cosi. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.


Boost 1

This incredibly soft comforter from Sunday Citizen is like sleeping on a cloud

My only complaint? I've slept through my alarm twice.

When it comes to getting a good night's sleep, there are many factors that, as a mama, are hard to control. Who's going to wet the bed at 3 am, how many times a small person is going to need a sip of water, or the volume of your partner's snoring are total wildcards.

One thing you can control? Tricking out your bed to make it as downright cozy as possible. (And in these times, is there anywhere you want to be than your bed like 75% of the time?)

I've always been a down comforter sort of girl, but after a week of testing the ridiculously plush and aptly named Snug Comforter from Sunday Citizen, a brand that's run by "curators of soft, seekers of chill" who "believe in comfort over everything," it's safe to say I've been converted.


Honestly, it's no wonder. Originally designed as a better blanket for luxury hotels and engineered with textile experts to create this uniquely soft fabric, it has made my bed into the vacation I so desperately want these days.

The comforter is made up of two layers. On one side is their signature knit "snug" fabric which out-cozies even my most beloved (bought on sale) cashmere sweater. The other, a soft quilted microfiber. Together, it creates a weighty blanket that's as soothing to be under as it is to flop face-first into at the end of an exhausting day. Or at lunch. No judgement.

Miraculously, given the weight and construction, it stays totally breathable and hasn't left me feeling overheated even on these warm summer nights with just a fan in the window.

Beyond being the absolute most comfortable comforter I've found, it's also answered my minimalist bed making desires. Whether you opt to use it knit or quilted side up, it cleanly pulls the room together and doesn't wrinkle or look unkempt even if you steal a quick nap on top of it.

Also worth noting, while all that sounds super luxe and totally indulgent, the best part is, it's equally durable. It's made to be easily machine washed and come out the other side as radically soft as ever, forever, which totally helps take the sting out of the price tag.

My only complaint? I've slept through my alarm twice.

Here is my top pick from Sunday Citizen, along with the super-soft goods I'm coveting for future purchases.

Woodland Snug comforter

Sunday-Citizen-Woodland-Snug-comforter

The bedroom anchor I've been looking for— the Snug Comforter.

$249

Braided Pom Pom Throw

Because this degree of coziness needs portability, I'm totally putting the throw version on my list. It's washable, which is a must-have given my shedding dog and two spill-prone kiddos who are bound to fight over it during family movie night.

$145

Lumbar pillow

sunday-citizen-lumbar-pillow

What's a cozy bed without a pile of pillows?

$65

Crystal infused sleep mask

sunday citizen sleep mask

Promoting sleep by creating total darkness and relaxation, I've bookmarked as my go-to gift for fellow mamas.

$40

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

Shop

Motherly created the flexible online birth class moms need

The Motherly Birth Class is completely online, which means you can take the class at your own pace.

Taking a birth class is a pregnancy milestone. Whether you've been excited to take a birth class for a long time or have just recently decided that you wanted to take one, sitting down for that first lesson feels big—spoiler alert, this is really happening! But finding time for a birth class isn't as easy as it would seem.

We know new parents are busy (hello, understatement of the year). Between diaper changes, pediatrician appointments, healing from birth and the general adjustment to #newparentlife, the days can fill up quickly. But a lot of people are caught off guard by how busy pregnancy can be, too! That first trimester is so often full of symptoms—like nausea and fatigue—that can make previously easy or simple tasks exhausting. The second trimester begins and (usually) we start to feel better. But then our days get filled with planning out baby registries and deciding on questions like, "Where will this tiny new human sleep?" And before you know it, it's the third trimester—and, well, then you're in the home stretch. Plus there are so many appointments!

All this to say that we get how busy you are—and how hard that might make it to fit in a birth class.

And that's why we created The Motherly Birth Class. The Motherly Birth Class is completely online, which means you can take the class at your own pace.


Think you'll want to watch each lesson a few times over? Great!

Due date's next week and you need the option to take a birth class very quickly? No problem!

Like everything at Motherly, we designed this class with you in mind.

Taught by Certified Nurse-Midwife Diana Spalding (who also wrote "The Motherly Guide to Becoming Mama"), this class is broken into 12 lessons—and you get to control how and when you watch them. We'll teach you about what your (amazing) body is up to in labor, how to decide when it's time to head to the hospital or birth center (or when to call your home birth midwife), what your options are for coping with pain and so much more.

When you sign up for The Motherly Birth Class, you'll get access to a downloadable workbook and meditations. Plus, you'll be invited to join our supportive private online community (where you can chat with the class instructor!)

Oh, one more thing: Your insurance or flexible spending account might even able to able to cover the cost of this class.

Pregnancy is wonderful—but it's a lot. You deserve a birth class that works for you and empowers you to have your best birth. Because vaginal or Cesarean, unmedicated or medication, birth is incredible. And you are the star of it all.

You've got this.

Sign up for The Motherly Birth Class today!

The Motherly Birth Class

pregnant-woman-looking-at-her-belly

Take our completely digital birth class from the comfort of your living room. We'll help you have your best birth—because you deserve it.

$79

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

Shop

14 toys that will keep your kids entertained inside *and* outside

They transition seamlessly for indoor play.

Keeping kids entertained is a battle for all seasons. When it's warm and sunny, the options seem endless. Get them outside and get them moving. When it's cold or rainy, it gets a little tricker.

So with that in mind, we've rounded up some of the best toys for toddlers and kids that are not only built to last but will easily make the transition from outdoor to indoor play. Even better, many are Montessori-friendly and largely open-ended so your kids can get a ton of use out of them.

From sunny backyard afternoons to rainy mornings stuck inside, these indoor outdoor toys are sure to keep little ones engaged and entertained.


Tiny thrill-seekers will love this kid-powered coaster which will send them (safely) sailing across the backyard or play space. The durable set comes with a high back coaster car and 10.75 feet of track, providing endless opportunities for developing gross motor skills, balance and learning to take turns. The track is made up of three separate pieces which are easy to assemble and take apart for storage (but we don't think it will be put away too often!)

$139

Secret Agent play set

Plan-Toys-Secret-agent-play-set

This set has everything your little secret agent needs to solve whatever case they might encounter: an ID badge, finger scanner, walkie-talkie handset, L-shaped scale and coloring comic (a printable file is also available for online download) along with a handy belt to carry it all along. Neighborhood watch? Watch out.

$40

Mini golf set

Plan Toys mini golf set

Fore! This mini golf set is lawn and living room ready. Set up a backyard competition or incorporate into homeschooling brain breaks that shift focus and build concentration.

$40

Stepping Stones

Stepping-stones

Kiddos can jump, stretch, climb and balance with these non-slip stepping stones. The 20-piece set can be arranged in countless configurations to create obstacle courses, games or whatever they can dream up.

$99.99

Sand play set

Plan Toys sand set

Whether you're hitting the beach or the backyard sandbox, this adorable wooden sand set is ready for action. Each scoop has an embossed pattern that's perfect for sand stamping. They're also totally suitable for water play in the wild or the bathtub.

$30

Sensory play set

kidoozie-sand-and-splash-activity-table

Filled with sand or water, this compact-sized activity set keeps little ones busy, quiet and happy. (A mama's ideal trifecta 😉). It's big enough to satisfy their play needs but not so big it's going to flood your floors if you bring the fun inside on a rainy day.

$19.95

Vintage scooter balance bike

Janod retro scooter balance bike

Pedals are so 2010. Balance bikes are the way to go for learning to ride a bike while skipping the training wheels stage altogether. This impossibly cool retro scooter-style is built to cruise the neighborhood or open indoor space as they're learning.

$121

Foam pogo stick

Flybar-my-first-foam-pogo-stick

Designed for ages 3 and up, My First Flybar offers kiddos who are too young for a pogo stick a frustration-free way to get their jump on. The wide foam base and stretchy bungee cord "stick" is sturdy enough to withstand indoor and outdoor use and makes a super fun addition to driveway obstacle courses and backyard races. Full disclosure—it squeaks when they bounce, but don't let that be a deterrent. One clever reviewer noted that with a pair of needle-nose pliers, you can surgically remove that sucker without damaging the base.

$16.99

Dumptruck 

green-toys-dump-truck

Whether they're digging up sand in the backyard or picking up toys inside, kids can get as creative as they want picking up and moving things around. Even better? It's made from recycled plastic milk cartons.

$22

Hopper ball

Hopper ball

Burn off all that extra energy hippity hopping across the lawn or the living room! This hopper ball is one of the top rated versions on Amazon as it's thicker and more durable than most. It also comes with a hand pump to make inflation quick and easy.

$14.99

Pull-along ducks

janod-pull-along-wooden-ducks

There's just something so fun about a classic pull-along toy and we love that they seamlessly transition between indoor and outdoor play. Crafted from solid cherry and beechwood, it's tough enough to endure outdoor spaces your toddler takes it on.

$16.99

Rocking chair seesaw

Slidewhizzer-rocking-chair-seesaw

This built-to-last rocking seesaw is a fun way to get the wiggles out in the grass or in the playroom. The sturdy design can support up to 77 pounds, so even older kiddos can get in on the action.

$79.99

Baby forest fox ride-on

janod toys baby fox ride on

Toddlers will love zooming around on this fox ride-on, and it's a great transition toy into traditional balance bikes. If you take it for a driveway adventure, simply use a damp cloth to wipe down the wheels before bringing back inside.

$79.99

Meadow ring toss game

Plan Toys meadow ring toss game

Besides offering a fantastic opportunity to hone focus, coordination, determination and taking turns, lawn games are just plain fun. Set them up close together for the littles and spread them out when Mom and Dad get in on the action. With their low profile and rope rings, they're great for indoors as well.

$24.75

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

Shop

How to make a baby: The quick + dirty guide to getting pregnant

If you have questions about getting pregnant—look no further than this helpful guide.

Making the decision to have a baby is a monumental moment. And if you're there, let me be the first to say, "yay!" I am so excited for you and everything to come on your conception and parenthood journey. I also want to acknowledge that while this is exciting, trying to get pregnant can feel stressful—especially if you are hoping to get pregnant quickly. Once you make the decision, suddenly it seems like all you can think about is getting pregnant. So as you learn about how to conceive, and as you move through this chapter of your life, do what you can to be gentle with yourself, practice self-care and remember how vitally important you are. (Your future baby would agree).

In addition to taking good care of yourself, you probably have a ton of questions about how to get pregnant.

Before we dive into exactly how conception works, remember that your health care provider should always be your go-to for questions specific to you and your situation. Generally speaking, we say that if you are under the age of 35 and have been trying to get pregnant through sex for 12 months, or 6 months for those 35 and older, it's time to reach out to your provider for support. But you can always check in sooner if you have concerns.

Without further ado, here is our 7-step, quick + dirty guide to getting pregnant fast.


1. Get prepared for getting pregnant.

If you have the opportunity to spend a few months focusing on your well-being before trying to get pregnant, it can be helpful. Here are a few ways to get ready for pregnancy:

  • Schedule a preconception visit. This is an appointment with your provider (usually an OB/GYN or a midwife) where you can discuss your overall health as it relates to getting pregnant. You can also start discussing all the ways to get pregnant (sex and many assisted reproductive technology methods), and which option might be best for you.
  • Start taking a prenatal vitamin with folic acid to help prevent spinal tube defects in your baby (taking it prior to getting pregnant makes it more effective).
  • Stop taking birth control. But discuss this with your provider so they can help you figure out the best timing for you.

2. Decide: Wing it—or plan it?

If you are trying to get pregnant through sex, do you want to take more of a “let's see what happens" approach to getting pregnant, or would you feel better charting and strategizing? Either is fine! And know that you can change your mind as you go.

If you decide to have a conception plan, then understanding your cycle is key.

3. Understand the menstrual cycle.

Your fertile window is five to six days long, typically in the middle of your cycle.

On average, those with a 28-day cycle will ovulate on day 14. But you are so not average! So charting your cycle is key to identifying your unique fertile days. In fact, just basing your conception attempts on a calendar can risk you missing your actual fertile days—your body will often show you that you are ovulation through specific signs of ovulation.

Ready to learn more? Here's how to find your most fertile days.

Once an egg is released from your ovary, it will survive for 12 to 24 hours. That means that it must meet the sperm within that window in order for it to become fertilized. The good news is that healthy sperm survives in your body for up to five days.

This is why knowing when you ovulate is so important.

Say you ovulate on Wednesday at midnight. Having sex or insemination anytime on Wednesday means that the sperm is potentially going to meet the egg during that 12- to 24-hour window. But if you had sex or insemination on Tuesday (or Monday, or maybe even Sunday or Saturday), the sperm may still be alive and waiting for the egg when it's released. So if you are anticipating ovulation within a few days, having sex or insemination will increase the chances of having living sperm ready to fertilize your egg.

4. Use apps and tests to identify your most fertile time.

Adding in apps and tests to help you identify your most fertile time can be really helpful. As I share in The Motherly Guide to Becoming Mama, "Some providers don't recommend using ovulation predictor kits right away because they worry that we might become too reliant on the (not-foolproof) technology. If you miss the subtle physical body signs described above, you might miss your window of fertility." Ultimately, you get to be the boss here and choose the method that works best for you.

If you decide to incorporate fertility apps and tests into your getting pregnant plant, here are a few to try:

  • Ovulation strips (like these): Just pee on the strip. If the test line is as dark or darker than the control, you are likely fertile.
  • Fertility monitors (like Kegg or Clearblue Fertility Monitor): These trackers can tell you when your fertility is low, high and peak.
  • Apps (like Glow and Kindara): They allow you to track your period, ovulation signs and tests, intercourse and insemination, and even your sleep to help you determine your most fertile windows.
  • Wearable devices (like Ava): When you wear it on your wrist overnight, this device detects changes in your body that indicate approaching ovulation.

5. Read your body's signs of ovulation.

Here are the physical signs of ovulation to pay attention to:

  • Cervical mucus: Cervical mucus is the normal vaginal discharge that changes as you progress through your cycle. It will go from nonexistent or dry to sticky, then creamy, and then wet, and then finally it will be the consistency of egg whites. That egg-white consistency means it's fertile cervical mucus and indicates that you are about to ovulate. It's the most sperm-friendly because they can easily swim through it up to the uterus.
  • Basal body temperature drop: If you're taking your temperature every day to chart your cycle using a fertility app or chart, you'll notice that just as you ovulate, you may see a slight drop in your basal body temperature, followed by an increase.
  • Cervical position: If you're up for doing your own vaginal exam, you might note that your cervix is softer, higher and more open around the time of ovulation.

You may also experience slight pain/cramping, breast tenderness, spotting and an increased interest in sex around your ovulation window.

6. Have sex or plan your insemination.

If you are trying to get pregnant via sex, and you're not tracking ovulation, have sex every other day all month long. If you are tracking ovulation, and your partner has an average or high sperm count, you can have sex every day in your fertile window. If they have a low sperm count, have sex every other day in order to boost the sperm concentration in the ejaculate (your provider can help you determine what your partner's sperm count is).

One note: Sperm is healthiest when ejaculation happens every two to three days, so encourage your partner or sperm donor not to wait too many days between orgasms.

If you are trying to get pregnant via assisted reproductive technologies, your provider will likely be the one to help you time your appointments. If you are doing at-home insemination, using the apps and monitors above in addition to watching your ovulation signs will help you determine when it's time.

7. Keep these pointers in mind.

  • Do what feels right: Know that it's a myth that any specific sexual position will improve your chances of conception.
  • However, do try for an orgasm: "Orgasm can stimulate uterine contractions, which may help to promote sperm transport through the reproductive tract," says Dr. Sanaz Ghazal, co-founder and medical director of RISE Fertility, and a double-certified fertility specialist.
  • If you use lube, be sure it's one that won't inhibit conception: "Some vaginal lubricants can actually decrease fertility by having adverse effects on the sperm. Over-the-counter water-based lubricants like Astroglide, K-Y Jelly and K-Y Touch can decrease sperm motility by as much as 60-100%," says Dr. Ghazal. Choose lubricants that are sperm-safe, like Pre-Seed.

8. Have fun!

I have a love-hate relationship with this piece of advice. Trying to get pregnant can become a bit stressful, and it's OK to admit it. That said, see if you can find ways to make the process as enjoyable as possible. Take care of yourself and each other if you are partnered. Don't force yourself to do anything that doesn't feel right.

A version of this story was originally posted on January 16, 2020. It has been updated.

If you're currently trying, we've got the goods you need for the journey in the Motherly Shop!

Premama vegetarian prenatal vitamins

Premama vegetarian prenatal vitamins

With a gentle minty taste that's gentle on your stomach, these non-GMO vitamins are formulated to support you with DHA, iron, folate and more.

$35

Premama fertility support for him

Premama fertility support for him

Yes! Fertility support for fathers to be is now as easy as drinking a protein shake. This multivitamin supplement supports sperm health and comes in the form of a powered, strawberry vanilla drink mix. It takes two to tango, mama.

$35

Premama birth control cleanse and fertility support conceive bundle

Premama birth control cleanse and fertility support conceive bundle

If you're ready to start trying, this is the perfect conception support kit for you. You'll begin with a Birth Control Cleanse drink mix to regulate the uterus and liver. Then transition to Fertility Support for Her to promote conception. Made with nourishing, gluten-free, vegetarian ingredients, the drink mixes easily blend with any non-carbonated beverage.

$140


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

Trying to Concieve

Viral TikTok teaches parents what to ask instead of 'How was your day?'

Dr. Siggie, a parenting expert, says the question is 'too overwhelming' for kids, and that's why they don't answer.

@parenting.with.dr.siggie/TikTok

It's almost an innate reflex, isn't it? Asking our kids how their day was the second they walk in the door or get off the bus? Because of course we want to know how their day went—it's a huge chunk of their day that we simply aren't a part of, and we want to make sure all was well, or help solve what went wrong.

But one parenting expert is gently steering parents away from that question by giving us the tools to build on it.


Dr. Siggie, a parenting expert, has lots of helpful videos on the topic of gentle parenting on TikTok, but her most recent viral TikTok is on the subject of getting an authentic recap of your child's day straight from the horse's mouth.

How many times to we hear things like "I don't know" or "I can't remember" or "Fine" when we ask them about their day at school? Pretty much always, right? Well that might be because the question itself is overwhelming to answer.

Let Dr. Siggie explain why.

"Of course you want to hear that your child had a great day," she affirms. "But your child just ended a long day full of effort. And that question is too big, too general for them to respond to."

Rather than asking that big question, Dr. Siggie suggests making your inquiries more specific. "During snacktime, who did you sit next to?" or "Did your teacher say anything funny today?"

She says doing it this way helps your child break down their experience in a more detailed and balanced way. And it helps us get the answers we're looking for—we just want to be part of their lives even when they're away from us. Most of all we want them to know we care, and we always will. This is a great, simple way to do just that.

News + Trending