Lifestyle

25 Eco-Moms to Watch

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*We’ve partnered with Joolz to recognize the moms that are changing the world for their babies, and ours. No doubt about it, parenthood makes you think first and foremost with your heart. From the moment your baby is born, it feels as if you’re suddenly walking around wearing your heart on your sleeve. Which in turn makes you hyper-aware of all that is around us and sensitive to issues you never quite paid attention to before (but should have). As parents, it’s our job to make the world a better place for the little ones we’ve brought into it. And the current state of affairs has made many of us even more proactive than ever before. Still, we know balancing life with kids can be all-consuming. So when we learn about moms dedicating their days to creating a better world for not only their kids, but all of ours, we take notice. And we’ve partnered with Joolz, an eco-minded company focused on positive design, to help you take notice. From eco-activists, to sustainable designers, to green beauty experts and more, here are 25 eco-moms to watch. Be prepared to be inspired -- and thankful -- for all that they do. 1. Lauren Bush Lauren, founder of FEED Projects. Lauren Bush Lauren has been helping children and families since long before she had one of her own. She founded FEED in 2007 as a way to help people fight against hunger in a tangible way, through the purchase of products that bring meals and nutrients to those in need. FEED has since expanded well beyond its signature burlap bags, with a plethora of well-intentioned collaborations and styles, all produced under fair-labor conditions, using environmentally friendly materials whenever possible. And now that Lauren’s the mom of a baby boy, we’re betting FEED’s diaper bags are coming in pretty handy…. 2. Bea Johnson, founder of Zero Waste Home. When Bea Johnson began her family 8 years ago she also set out on a path for the good of the world by dedicating herself and her family to a zero waste lifestyle. That means committing herself to the 5 R’s: Reduce what you do need, Reuse what you consume, Recycle what you cannot Refuse, Reduce or Reuse, and Rot (Compost) the rest. Her family of four manages to generate only a quart-size jar of waste per year! Bea now goes around the world giving talks about helping others help themselves and the world. 3. Nasiba Adilova, founder of The Tot. Nasiba Adilova is much more than a pretty face. After she became a mommy, this jet-setting Russian fashionista founded of The Tot, an online shop filled with smartly curated gear and fashion for baby and mom. The site is committed to eco-friendly merchandise, but also features cool collabs and mama advice and recommendations. After testing a pop-up shop in Dallas, The Tot has settled into a permanent location, which will be convenient for Nasiba when she welcomes Baby #2 to her brood this spring. 4. Mona Hanna-Attisha, pediatrician and children's health advocate. As a pediatrician Mona Hanna-Attisha already dedicates her life to helping children. But it wasn’t until 2014 that she became recognized on a national level. Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha was the doctor that brought the Flint Water Crisis to it’s feet. After much denial from the state, Dr. Hanna-Attisha would not ignore her patients complaining of strange systems and elevated lead levels. The graduate of Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, Hanna-Attisha conducted her own study that found the percentage of elevated blood lead levels among children in the city had doubled and announced the results at a press conference.

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Grace with her Joolz stroller

5. Grace Lee, founder of Nine Naturals. Grace Lee believes personal care products should make you feel and look beautiful without potentially harming you or your children. She was a Wall Street executive when she realized that the beauty aisle was full of hazardous chemicals. When she started shopping for natural brands, she was disappointed by many of them. So she created Nine Naturals and has since dedicated her life to create chemical-free beauty and skincare products that actually work. All of Nine Natural’s products are natural, plant based and safe for pregnancy and beyond. 6. Mara Hoffman, fashion designer. When it comes to women’s fashion, the terms sustainable and stylish don’t often go hand in hand. But everyone’s favorite mama designer Mara Hoffman is changing perceptions. She’s said that it was the birth of her son that pushed her to go greener, and has since been evolving her fashion line to include more recycled and eco-friendly fabrics and prints. Her latest collections also includes beautiful basics that will stand the test of time, a pushback, she says, against fast fashion and overconsumption.

Nicole with her Joolz stroller

7. Nicole Berrie, founder of Bonberi. It’s not easy to make eating broccoli look fun and, dare we say, sexy, but Berrie manages to do both. Her website Bonberi presents a plant-based, sustainable lifestyle that is equally chic and fashionable -- a place where you can talk about wellness with an open mind. Now that she’s got a baby, family cooking has become increasingly important, and this year, she’ll launch her first e-cookbook, focused on plant-based family friendly meals. In the meantime, you’ll find plenty of tools on Bonberi to figure out what “feeling and looking good” means to you -- the kind of support that a lot of us need when trying to live a healthier, more balanced life. 8. Tata Harper, founder of Tata Harper. The words “natural” and “beauty” aren’t necessarily two that go hand in hand. Unless you’re talking about Tata Harper’s Next Generation Beauty Line. Tata set out on a mission to give the skincare industry a fresh start with highly effective and luxurious beauty products that are completely free of synthetic ingredients. As a bonus all of Tata’s packaging is made without labels so it’s one less waste to our environment.

Hana with her Joolz stroller

9. Hana Getachew, founder of Bole Road Textiles. When it comes to interior design, Hana Getachew believes we can do better. Her ethically sourced home decor is all designed in Brooklyn and handwoven in Ethiopia, using ancient weaving traditions, passed down through the generations. The birth of her baby girl in 2016 prompted her to launch Bole Road Baby, filled with beautiful baby blankets, towels and other nursery accents. 10. Krysta Lyn, founder of Yipkids. Finding clothes that your opinionated toddler loves to wear is tough. Finding clothes that they love and you feel good supporting? Even tougher! That’s why Krysta Lyn created Yipkids with both her kids and the world they live in mind. Her line is constructed from environmentally responsible materials, and design and manufactured right in her hometown of Long Beach, California.

Kelsey with her Joolz stroller

11. Kelsey Harper, Flower Girl Los Angeles. Floral arrangements at an event are always something to ooh and aah over, especially when it’s Kelsey Harper of Flower Girl Los Angeles designing your arrangements. But this impressive mama goes a few steps further. Not only are her flowers seasonal and sourced locally which leaves behind a smaller eco-footprint, but Flower Girl also makes sure to waste as little as possible, implementing composting of all green waste. Now that’s a reason to celebrate. 12. Tara Foley, founder of Follain. With all the nasties in much of our skincare and makeup, Tara Foley had a dream to create a healthy alternative. Her first beauty shop opened in Boston in 2013, and she has since expanded to up and down the Northeast Corridor, providing a curated selection of skin, hair and cosmetic products that are safe (non-toxic), eco-friendly, high-performance, luxe, and U.S.-made. This past year’s been a busy one: Tara launched house label, set up shop in NYC and had a baby, giving her a new appreciation for pregnancy and postpartum care. 13. Melissa Wood, health and wellness coach. When it comes to being green, Melissa Wood starts from the inside out. This NYC-based health and wellness coach, yoga teacher and model brings a touch of glam to the healthy, plant-based lifestyle, whether she’s leading your fave workout on Fitner App, or gracing the pages of Shape, Women’s Health and Pregnancy & Newborn magazines. And with a toddler at home, we know that’s no small task! 14. Vani Hari, Food Babe. After a health scare that hospitalized Vani Hari 10 years ago, this new mama, was inspired to live a healthy life, harnessing her energy into investigating what is really in our food. She’s spent thousands of hours over the years researching and talking to experts to make sense of this over-processed world we live in. Vani empowers her readers by giving them the knowledge and truth about harmful ingredients in processed foods and how to avoid the stuff the food industry is trying to hide. Something we could all use and pass down to our kids! 15. Paige Wolf, founder of a B Corp-certified PR firm. It takes a lot of willpower to turn down work with brands that don’t meet your eco-standards, especially as a small business owner. But PR maven Paige Wolf only works with clients who contribute to a sustainable world and positive change. The Philadelphia mom has built her portfolio out of green lifestyle and nonprofit brands, and is the first certified B Corporation public relations company in her city, meeting comprehensive and transparent social and environmental standards. 16. Shazi Visram, founder of Happy Family Brands. As the founder of Happy Family Brands, mom-of-two Shazi Visram is helping us make our families greener and healthier at the most important time in their life: before their 2nd birthdays. Shazi founded her baby food company 10 years ago (before she was even a mom!) and it has since extended into toddler and prenatal, and launched tons of innovative mealtime solutions. Happy Family Brands is also certified as a B-Corporation, which means it meets rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. 17. Phyllis Omido, founder the Center for Justice, Governance, and Environmental Action. We typically think of breast milk as nutritional gold, but when mamas are exposed to toxins, it can be anything but healthy. After Kenyan mom Phyllis Omido realized her baby boy had lead poisoning due to her own dangerous chemical exposure at a local plant, she worked to get the plant shut down, and help get support and medical aid for others in the poor community in which she lived. She ultimately founded the Center for Justice, Governance, and Environmental Action and was awarded the Golman Environmental Prize Recipient for her work. 18. Jessika Bailey, founder of Natural Mother Magazine. When Jessika Bailey became a mother, she “fell” into natural parenting quite, well, naturally: she followed her instincts. And in a world of endless information where making decisions for your family can be quite overwhelming, she felt the need to help others be confident in their parenting styles. So she created Natural Mother Magazine and gifted moms and dads with a community where they could share and read stories about gentle parenting and holistic living -- and all of it without judgement.   19. Christine Lolley, founder of design firm Solares. Christine Lolley has long been interested in green home design and sustainable living and, together with Tom Knezic, created Solares. With energy efficiency and affordability in mind, the Solares team provides architectural expertise to design eco-friendly homes and, hopefully, build a more sustainable future. A mother of two, Lolley even built her parents’ house, which blends perfectly with its surrounding environment and features temperature regulation techniques that greatly reduce heating needs in the winter and eliminate the need for air conditioning in the summer. 20. Judi Shils, founder of Turning Green. Judi Shils isn’t new to activism. She created a campaign that opposed hazardous chemicals in beauty and personal care products and founded Search for the Cause, which probed into the skyrocketing cancer rates in Marin County. With Turning Green, Shils (along with her daughter) broadened her mission to equip high school and college students with the tools to shift mindsets towards sustainable living. Her goal: to empower future leaders to take the helm in the fight for environmental justice. 21. Salma Hayek, actress and activist. Sure, Salma Hayek is a beautiful, talented actress. But she also does her part to live “green” -- even more so now that she’s a mom. Hayek hasn’t just given her presence and money to environmental causes and charities. She’s also served as a board member to Global Green, an organization that builds sustainable and resilient communities and that provides affordable housing to areas in need. And since you can never do enough to nurture Mother Nature, Hayek reportedly installed solar panels on her Los Angeles home. 22. Colleen Wachob, co-founder of mindbodygreen. As Founding Partner and Chief Brand Officer at lifestyle media brand mindbodygreen, Colleen Wachob totally walks the walk. Which is important when you’re leading a company that inspires people to live their best life. But that doesn’t mean it’s her way or the highway. Her and her team work hard to provide their readers with the best info possible about mental, physical, spiritual, emotional, and of course environmental topics for those on their wellness journeys. 23. Rosario Dawson, actress and activist. Rosario Dawson is no stranger to advocating for social changes. She’s engaged with various organizations to both protect the planet and help those in need. Her latest project? Studio 189 -- an online platform dedicated to promote and curate African and African-inspired content and brands. Using the world of fashion for social change, Dawson hopes to help African communities in need by empowering women, creating jobs and supporting education. In 2012, Dawson also partnered with SodaStream International to launch the first annual Unbottle the World Day, in an effort to raise awareness to the impact of cans and plastic bottles on the environment. 24. Melinda Olson, founder of Earth Mama Angel Baby. Founder of baby and mama skincare brand, Earth Mama Angel Baby, Melinda Olson began formulating organic herbal remedies for friends in her Oregon kitchen many years ago. From there her love of organic gardening, passion for herbs and desire to find safe products for mamas and babies led to founding Earth Mama Angel Baby, an industry leader in safe, natural and organic herbal products. So you can feel good about what you’re putting on baby’s skin. 25. Kelly Nichols, activist, educator, and organizer for Moms Clean Air Force. Kelly Nichols grew up roaming the woods of mid-coast Maine and Northern Minnesota, instilling a long-lasting love of nature. With Moms Clean Air Force, she works tirelessly to make the air of her home state, Illinois, cleaner. Moms Clean Air Force is a community of 1,000,000 moms and dads united to fight against air pollution, in the name of our children’s health and future. Did we miss an eco-mom that inspires you? Tell us all about her in comments! *This post was sponsored by Joolz. Want to see why every eco-mom is loving their strollers? Check them out here.
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When it comes to holiday gifts, we know what you really want, mama. A full night's sleep. Privacy in the bathroom. The opportunity to eat your dinner while it's still hot. Time to wash—and dry!—your hair. A complete wardrobe refresh.


While we can't help with everything on your list (we're still trying to figure out how to get some extra zzz's ourselves), here are 14 gift ideas that'll make you look, if not feel, like a whole new woman. Even when you're sleep deprived.

Gap Cable-Knit Turtleneck Sweater

When winter hits, one of our go-to outfits will be this tunic-length sweater and a pair of leggings. Warm and everyday-friendly, we can get behind that.

$69.95

Gap Cigarette Jeans

These high-waisted straight-leg jeans have secret smoothing panels to hide any lumps and bumps (because really, we've all got 'em).

$79.95

Tiny Tags Gold Skinny Bar Necklace

Whether engraved with a child's name or date of birth, this personalized necklace will become your go-to piece of everyday jewelry.

$135.00

Gap Brushed Pointelle Crew

This wear-with-anything soft pink sweater with delicate eyelet details can be dressed up for work or dressed down for weekend time with the family. Versatility for the win!

$79.95

Gap Flannel Pajama Set

For mamas who sleep warm, this PJ set offers the best of both worlds: cozy flannel and comfy shorts. Plus, it comes with a coordinating eye mask for a blissed-out slumber.

$69.95

Spafinder Gift Card

You can't give the gift of relaxation, per say, but you can give a gift certificate for a massage or spa service, and that's close enough!

$50.00

Gap Stripe Long Sleeve Crewneck

This featherweight long-sleeve tee is the perfect layering piece under hoodies, cardigans, and blazers.

$29.95

Gap Chenille Smartphone Gloves

Gone are the days of removing toasty gloves before accessing our touchscreen devices—thank goodness!

$9.95

Ember Temperature Control Smart Mug

Make multiple trips to the microwave a thing of the past with a app-controlled smart mug that'll keep your coffee or tea at the exact temperature you prefer for up to an hour.

$79.95

Gap Flannel Shirt

Our new favorite flannel boasts an easy-to-wear drapey fit and a flattering curved shirttail hem.

$59.95

Gap Sherpa-Lined Denim Jacket

Stay warm while looking cool in this iconic jean jacket, featuring teddy bear-soft fleece lining and a trendy oversized fit.

$98.00

Gap Crazy Stripe Scarf

Practical and stylish, this cozy scarf adds a pop of color—well, colors—to any winter ensemble.

$39.95

Nixplay Seed Frame

This digital picture frame is perfect for mamas who stay up late scrolling through their phone's photo album to glimpse their kiddos being adorable. By sending them to this smart frame to view throughout the day, you can get a few extra minutes of sleep at night!

$165.00

Gap Crewneck Sweater

Busy mamas will appreciate that this supersoft, super versatile Merino wool sweater is machine washable.

$59.95

This article was sponsored by GAP. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and Mamas.

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There's a lot of discussion about the importance of early education—but what about soft skills like respect and kindness? How can mamas teach children important values like cooperation, gratitude, empathy or politeness?

These values are basic, foundational beliefs that help us know right from wrong, that give balance and meaning to life and that enable us to form community bonds with one another. These soft skills are crucial for kids to learn at any age, and it's important for them to be reinforced, both in the classroom and at home, throughout their childhood.

Here are fundamental ways to build character in your young children:

Kindness

Performing random acts of kindness can have a positive influence on both the individual showing and receiving the kindness. As a family, think of ways that each one of you can show kindness to others. Some ideas may include baking cookies for the mail carrier, donating an unopened toy to a local charity, purchasing canned goods for a homeless shelter or leaving notes and drawings for the neighbors. Include your child in the process so they can see firsthand the joy that kindness can bring to others.

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Responsibility

Children have a strong desire to mimic adult family members. Encourage your child to help complete simple chores in and around the house. Children feel a great sense of accomplishment when they can do their share and feel that sense of responsibility. Two-year-olds will enjoy folding towels, putting books away, putting paper in the recycling box and tending to the garden. Older children may enjoy helping out in the kitchen or with yard work.

Patience

Patience is the ability to demonstrate self-control while waiting for an event to occur. It also refers to the ability to remain calm in the face of frustration. This is a skill which develops in children as they mature. While it is important to practice patience, adults should also be realistic in their expectations, evaluate daily routines and eliminate long periods of wait time from the schedule.

Politeness

Schedule a time when the whole family can sit down together for dinner. Model good manners and encourage older siblings and other members of the family to do the same. Use phrases such as, "Can you please pass the potatoes?" or "Thank you." Be sure to provide your child with guidance, by explaining what to do as opposed to what not to do.

Flexibility

Change your routines at home to encourage children to be flexible in their thinking and to try new things. Try being flexible in the small things: enjoy breakfast for dinner, eat ice cream with a fork, have your child read a bedtime story to you or have a picnic in the living room. Let your child know it is okay to do things in a different way.

Empathy

Children are beginning to understand different emotions and that others have feelings. Throughout their childhood, talk about their feelings and share one's own feeling with them as well. By taking the time to listen to how children are feeling, you will demonstrate to them that you care and reinforce with them that you fully understand how they are feeling.

Cooperation

Coordinate playdates or take your children to events where they can practice introducing themselves to other children, and potentially with adults. Find games and other activities that require turn-taking and sharing.

Gratitude

Encourage your child to spend five minutes every day listing the things they are grateful for. This could be done together just before bedtime or after dinner.

Respect

As parents, our goal is to teach children to recognize that even though people have different likes and dislikes or beliefs and ideas, they must treat each other with manners and positivity. Respect should be shown when sharing, cleaning up, and listening to others. Always teach and model the Golden Rule: treat others the way you would like to be treated. Also remind children that respect can be shown towards things in the classroom. Treating materials and toys correctly shows appreciation for the things we have.
Learn + Play

Medical researchers and providers consider a woman's postpartum period to be up to 12 months after the delivery of baby, but too often, health insurance doesn't see it the same way. Nearly half of the births in the United States are covered by Medicaid or the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and while the babies who are born during these births are eligible for Medicaid or CHIP for a year, their mothers often lose their coverage 60 days after delivering their child. There is clear data showing 70% of new moms will have at least one health complication within a year of giving birth.

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This week, members of Congress' Subcommittee on Health met to mark up H.R. 4996, the "Helping Medicaid Offer Maternity Services (MOMS) Act of 2019, and it was favorably forwarded to the full Committee.

What does this mean? It means that while this bill still has a ways to go before it potentially becomes law, its success would see states get the option to provide 12 months of continuous coverage postpartum coverage to mothers on Medicaid. This would save lives.

As we at Motherly have said many times, it takes a considerable amount of time and energy to heal from birth. A mother may not be healed 60 days out from delivering. She may still require medical care for perinatal mood disorders, breast issues like thrush and mastitis, diabetes, and the consequences of traumatic births, like severe vaginal tearing.

Cutting off Medicaid when her baby is only 2 months old makes mom and baby vulnerable, and the Helping Moms Act could protect families from dire consequences.

The United States has the highest rate of maternal deaths in the developed world, and according to the CDC, "about 700 women die each year in the United States as a result of pregnancy or delivery complications." This is not okay, and while H.R. 4996 is not yet signed into law this bill could help change this. It could help address the racial disparities that see so many Black mothers and Native American mothers dying from preventable causes in the first year of motherhood.

A report from nine American maternal mortality review committees found that there were three leading causes of death that occurred between 43 days and one year postpartum: cardiomyopathy (32.4%), mental health conditions (16.2%), and embolism (10.8%) and multiple state maternal mortality review committees have recommended extending Medicaid coverage to one year postpartum in order to prevent these deaths.

Basically, making sure that moms have have continuous access to health care the year after a birth means doctors can spot issues with things like depression, heart disease and high blood pressure at regular check-ups and treat these conditions before they become fatal.

The Helping Moms Act is a step forward in the fight for maternal health and it proves that maternal health is truly a bipartisan issue. Republicans and Democrats alike recognize the value in providing support for mothers during the postpartum period.

The Helping MOMS Act was was introduced by Democratic Congresswoman Robin Kelly of Illinois, chair of the Congressional Black Caucus Health Braintrust. It was co-lead by Texas Republican Michael Burgess (who is also a medical doctor), as well as Georgia Republican Buddy Carter, Washington Republicans Jaime Herrera Beutler and Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Ayanna Pressley from Massachusettes and Lauren Underwood of Illinois (both Democrats).

"Incentivizing postpartum Medicaid expansion is a critical first step in preventing maternal deaths by ensuring new moms can see their doctor. I'm proud that my colleagues, on both sides of the aisle, came together to put an end to the sad reality of American moms dying while growing their families," said Kelly. "We can't allow the perfect to be the enemy of the good. This is a good, bipartisan first step, but it must be the first of many."

It doesn't matter what your political stripes, reducing America's maternal mortality stats should be a priority.

News

Whether you're having a low-key Friendsgiving with your closest friends or prepping to host your first big Thanksgiving dinner with both families, figuring out all of the menu details can be the most overwhelming step. How much should I cook? What ingredients do I need? How does one actually cook a turkey this big?

But, don't worry, mama—HelloFresh is lending a helping hand this year with their Thanksgiving box in collaboration with Jessica Alba. Because you already have enough on your plate (and we're not talking stuffing).


Here are the details. You can choose from two Thanksgiving boxes: Turkey ($152) or beef tenderloin ($132). The turkey box serves 8-10 people while the beef one will serve 4-6 and both are $6.99 to ship. We got to try both and they're equally delicious so you can't go wrong with either one, but the turkey does require a 4-day thaw period so keep that in mind. And if you're wondering what the sides are, here's a sneak peek:

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  • Garlic mashed potatoes
  • Green bean casserole with crispy onions
  • Ciabatta stuffing with chick sausage and cranberries
  • Cranberry sauce with orange, ginger and cinnamon
  • Apple ginger crisp with cinnamon pecan crumble

While someone still has to do the actual cooking, it's designed to take the stress out of Thanksgiving dinner so you can focus on spending time with your loved ones (or watching Hallmark Christmas movies). You don't have to worry about grocery shopping, portion sizes, recipe curation or forgetting that essential thing you needed to make the meal perfect. Everything is super simple to make from start to finish—it even comes with a cooking timeline.

Orders are open through November 21 and can be delivered anytime through November 24. Even better? You don't need a subscription to order.


ORDER A BOX

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My mother's death propelled me to start the process of becoming a parent as a 43-year-old single woman. As my connection to her remained strong in spirit after her death, I was ready to experience the same bond with my own child. I began the journey with Intra Uterine Insemination (IUI), and after three failed attempts at getting pregnant, I decided to adopt.

The adoption process is a lengthy and humbling one—one that includes fingerprints, background checks, references, classes, doing a profile of yourself and your life that birth parents eventually use to choose adoptive families.

After my application was approved, a young couple chose me just a month later. I couldn't believe my fortune. But I had to get to work and prepare the house for my baby's arrival. I bought the best of everything—bassinets, clothes, diapers, car seats… the list goes on. I told close friends and family that it was finally happening.

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But all of this was in vain. The day I was supposed to pick my daughter up, I learned that the birth parents had changed their minds. They no longer wanted to give their daughter up for adoption. As time passed, it was difficult to endure no interest from potential parents but the faith in believing what is meant to be continued. To increase my potential, I enrolled with a second adoption agency.

A few months later, as I was getting ready to try IVF for the first time, I received a phone call to let me know that a woman had selected me to adopt her child. So I opted out of IVF and found myself in a hospital delivery room with the birth mother, assisting her in the delivery of MY child. It was a boy! I was so thrilled, and he was just adorable.

After six years of losses and disappointments, I was able to bring him home and awaited the final word that the mother and father have given the needed consent. I was getting ready to watch the Super Bowl with him dressed in football gear, I got a phone call.

Once again, the adoption agency informed me that the birth mother had changed her mind. That evening, I had to return the baby to his birth mom. I was heartbroken, and my hopes were shattered.

What now? Going back to IVF meant starting from scratch, and that would take a minimum of six months before being able to really start getting pregnant. I was 49 years old, and the clock was ticking. I really wanted to be a mom by the age of 50.

I was in Chicago, recovering from a collapsed lung, when I received yet another phone call from the adoption agency. An expecting mom had chosen me and had already signed over all of her rights. This little girl was mine. For real, this time. But I had to get to Southern New Jersey by Thursday to pick her up from the hospital.

After negotiating with my doctor to give me the green light to leave while recovering from my condition, I hopped on a train, and 22 hours later, I arrived to New York City in a massive snow storm. I took longer than expected to get to her, but after navigating the icy roads of New Jersey, I met my daughter!

She is now 2 years old, and she has changed my life in ways that just can't be fully described. What I can say is that I now understand my mother's love even more and her devotion to me and my siblings, and as I am sharing the same with my daughter, my bond to my mother keeps on growing.

Becoming a mom at 49 was never what I had envisioned. But whether you are trying to conceive or have decided to adopt a child, the road to becoming a parent is rarely easy. I know that inner strength and believing in what was meant to be kept me moving forward.

Life
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