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5 New Uses For Your Bathroom After You Have Kids

When a bathroom is so much more than a bathroom.

5 New Uses For Your Bathroom After You Have Kids

Before kids, your bathroom’s function was pretty straightforward. It was a place to primp before work, to do your business, and to bathe. Every now and then, maybe when there was a good sale at Anthro, you might have had fun sprucing it up with some gorgeous bath towels and a nice porcelain soap dish.

But after kids? Well, the bathroom becomes so much more than just a washroom (especially if you live in an apartment in NYC where one bathroom is shared among the entire family). It can transcend the limits of its four walls and take you to places beyond your wildest dreams (and sometimes nightmares). Here is a list of 5 different places that your bathroom transforms into after you have kids.

  1. The Trenches of War. You're crying it out for the first time, and you can't stand to hear your baby's wails of despair coming from her room. Your other half has already had to make a human fortress at the baby’s doorway (which you had asked him to do beforehand) to block you from going in. So you run into the bathroom and turn on all the faucets and the shower, and wedge yourself into the crevice between the toilet and the sink as you rock back and forth with your hands over your ears like an insane person. The bathroom begins to get steamy, and, between breaks to wipe off condensation from the baby monitor, you do your best to try and pretend that you are in a magical and misty rainforest -- not in the depths of gut-wrenching sleep training.
  2. A Day Spa. Whether you are a stay-at-home mom or a working mom coming home to the bedtime grind, nothing is as rewarding and lovely as an unhurried shower after the little is in bed -- or if you're really feeling wild, a bath. Because here’s how the night went down: You lovingly prepared three different meals for your child that ultimately all got rejected and finally, after a screaming match in which you said he will absolutely not be getting dessert tonight, you ended up crying into the freezer door as you reached for the ice cream because you just couldn’t take it anymore. So now, spending 20 uninterrupted minutes with the door closed while soaking your tired body in hot water feels like the ultimate luxury spa. Add a couple trashy magazines or the Savage Lovecast podcast, and you’re in heaven. Calgon take me away!
  3. A Lover's Getaway. Don't even try to close the bedroom door for a few stolen minutes with your honey. The kids will immediately stop watching Daniel Tiger to inquire why you've all of a sudden shut them out of the fun. If you close the BATHROOM door, however, it is a whole other story. Children vaguely understand the concept of privacy and don't always question why when Mommy says she's on the potty and just needs a few minutes, Daddy might also be in the bathroom with her. It is ok. Kids are smart, but not always THAT smart. God bless. Sometimes you can even get away with telling them you guys are taking a shower (and they won’t even question why the shower isn’t on). Just try to not do this move when the in-laws are on their way over. Some of us might have once had a horrifying scenario in which we emerged from the bathroom completely dressed and with dry hair to find in-laws in our apartment, who informed us that when they asked our son where his parents were, his answer was, “oh they’re just taking a shower!”
  4. A Room of One’s Own. Men have been disappearing into bathrooms for 40-minute periods to escape their wives, in-laws and children since the dawn of time. It is high time women get hip to this little trick, too. ‘Cus sometimes you need to get away from it all and away from all of THEM, maybe you front like you are having some tummy troubles so you quietly exit to the bathroom and lie on the floor and stare at the ceiling for ten minutes. Or maybe you just want five minutes to see what the rest of the world is pretending to be up to on Facebook or Instagram while all you’ve done is clean the kitchen for the fifth time today, and it is not even lunch yet. No one has to know.
  5. A Community Room. Who knew so much could happen at once in such a small room? You’ve got one kid going number two on the potty while watching his iPad, another is singing and dancing to This Little Light of Mine in the tub, your husband is trying to shave, and you are doing a hand wash of all your delicates while simultaneously playing keep away with a rope toy with your dog. And it is all happening in a space hardly bigger than a toddler bed. Your bathroom might, possibly, work as hard as you do.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve done in your bathroom since becoming a parent?

Homepage image of Bathroom Scene, Lisbeth by Carl Larsson.

 

In This Article

    Ara Katz/Seed

    We spoke to Ara Katz, co-founder and co-CEO of Seed, who shared her journey to (and through) motherhood—and gave us the lowdown on how probiotics can benefit mamas and children alike.

    Chances are, you're aware that probiotics can help us digest the food we eat, keep inflammation at bay, synthesize essential vitamins and more. But here's the thing: When it comes to probiotics, there's a lot of misinformation… and because of that, it's hard to know what's actually a probiotic and which is the right one for you.

    That's why we chatted with Ara Katz, who is a mama to son Pax and the co-founder of Seed, a company disrupting the probiotics industry. The entrepreneur told us about her motherhood journey, what led her to start her company and what she wants other parents to know about probiotics.

    Q. What was life like for you before you became a mama?

    I was bi-coastal after co-founding a mobile tech company in New York City with a partner in LA. My life was, for as long as I can remember, consumed by creating and work. I was fairly nomadic, loved to travel, spent many hours reading and practicing yoga, being with friends [and] waking up at the crack of dawn. [I] was fairly sure I would never marry or have children. And then something shifted.

    Q. What were some pivotal moments that defined your journey to motherhood?

    Ha, that makes it sound like motherhood is a destination when at this very moment, more than ever, it evolves daily. I lost my mom when I was 17 and spent most of my life believing I didn't want to be a mother. I had a lot of wiring about its limitations and constraints—I'm sure relics of grief and the fear of loss.

    My journey started with a physiological wanting to be pregnant and have a baby. There was a kind of visceral sense that my body wanted to know what that was like and a strange curiosity that, at least for that period of time, usurped my ambivalence about motherhood.

    Then I had a miscarriage—a beautiful inflection point in my story. I resigned from my company, chose a coast, committed to be more committed to my (then) boyfriend, now husband, and tried again. I got pregnant shortly after that and found pregnancy to be a profound journey within, a reshaping of my life and the tiniest glimpse of how motherhood would unfold.

    In the 55 months since giving birth (and I like to use months because I have learned in the moments that I am most frustrated as a mom that he has only been on this planet for less than 14 fiscal quarters), I have realized and surrendered to a definition of motherhood that is a process. One of cultivating, creating, recreating, shapeshifting, learning, feeling, healing, hurting and experiencing the most potent form of presence I have ever experienced—and an aching, expansive love I didn't know possible—not just for my son, but for all living things.

    Q. How did motherhood change your approach to your career?

    Becoming a mother is certainly a persistent lens on all of my choices, but it was really my miscarriage that recalibrated my path. My pregnancy rekindled my love of biology and health and led me to my co-founder and the microbiome. My breastfeeding experience incepted our first product focus, and the newfound accountability for a human inspired our brand.

    Q. What inspired you to co-found Seed?

    I met my co-founder, Raja, during my pregnancy with Pax. [I] was immediately awestruck by his ability to both deeply understand science and to methodically break down a product, dietary question or piece of advice in a way that's educational (you actually learn something about your body), actionable (you understand what to do with the information) and foundational (you can build on that knowledge in the future to continue to make better choices).

    As we spent more time, our combined passion for microbes, their potential impact on both human health and the environment, and how to set up a child for a healthy life became increasingly clear. And through birth, seeding (the process by which we get our foundational microbes and the inspiration for the name of our company) Pax and my struggles with breastfeeding, my entrepreneurial spirit was lit to build something with Raja. His deep experience in translating science to product, and mine in consumer, community-building and translating through storytelling, culminated in a shared vision to set a new standard in health through bacteria.

    Q. Probiotics have been trending in recent years, but they're nothing new—can you talk a bit about the importance of probiotics?

    Interest in gut health and probiotics increases month by month. However, despite the quickly growing number of "probiotic" supplements, foods and beverages out there, there's still a lot of consumer confusion—particularly around what they are, how they work and why we should take them. Probiotics have been studied extensively across various life stages, body sites and for many benefits. Digestion is an obvious and immediate one (and the primary reason most people currently take probiotics). But other strains have also been studied for skin health, heart health and gut health (including gut immune function and gut barrier integrity). But this doesn't mean that any and all probiotics can do these things—this is the importance of 'strain specificity.' In other words, ensuring that the specific strains in your probiotic have been studied for the benefit you desire is critical.

    Seed Daily Synbiotic

    Seed

    Seed's Daily Synbiotic is a 24-strain probiotic + prebiotic formulated for whole-body benefits, including gut, skin and heart health.


    Q. How do probiotics play a role in your life?

    I mean, I take them, I develop them and I work with some of the leading scientists from around the world advancing the field—so they play a big role. As for my personal health, I take our Daily Synbiotic daily and my son also takes specific strains for gastrointestinal health and gut immune function. Beyond that, it's the re-orientation around my microbiome that guides many of my choices: how important fiber is, specific compounds like polyphenols found in berries, green tea and other foods, avoiding the use of NSAIDS like ibuprofen and antibiotics when not needed, exercise, sleep and time in nature [are] all aspects of our daily life that impact our microbiome and our health.

    Q. What are some misconceptions about probiotics that you would like to set straight?

    There's one main myth on from which all the other stem: that probiotics aren't considered a serious science. On the contrary, it's a field of inquiry that demands incredible rigor and extensive research. And when anything and everything from chocolate to ice cream to fermented food and kombucha to mattresses can call itself "probiotic" due to underregulation in the category, that grossly undermines the science and their potential.

    The term 'probiotic' has a globally-accepted scientific definition that was actually co-authored by our Chief Scientist, Dr. Gregor Reid ,for the United Nations/World Health Organization.

    At Seed, we work to reclaim the term for science, through the development of next-generation probiotics that include clinically validated strains and undergo the most rigorous safety, purity and efficacy testing procedures. Because why would you invite billions of unknown microbes into your body without asking "what's in here, is it the correct dosage that was studied, and has that strain in that amount been studied in human clinical trials to do something beneficial for my body"?

    Q. Can you tell us a little bit about what product you plan to launch next?

    We are developing a pipeline of consumer probiotics to target specific ecosystems of the body and life stages, including a synbiotic for children. Our next product will reflect a unique breakthrough in the field of pediatric probiotics, which we are excited to announce soon.

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

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