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Entries in she's write (31)

Thursday
Feb142013

She'sWrite: Telling My Story for One Billion Rising's Call to End Violence Against Women and Girls

If you haven't guessed, She'sWrite is a dear, personal friend of mine. I am so proud of her for sharing this story, and I'm grateful that she's let me share it with you here. -- Tara

I remember the moment he slapped me. If I listen hard enough, I can still hear the ringing in my ears. We both just stared at each other, shocked that he’d actually hit me.

I’d never been hit before. I was never in any teenage catfights, nor school yard tussles at recess. Come to think of it, the last time I’d gotten hit was as a boundary-pushing kid and it came in the form of a spanking from my dad.

But here he was, my angry, big, glowering boyfriend. And my cheek was on fire. How the hell did I get here? My boyfriend just hit me. How did I become this girl?

 *      *      *      *

We started dating when I was a freshman in college. That first year was a whirlwind of college fun. We laughed, partied, and did all the stupid things that college kids do. Then came year two. The year that I realized he was an alcoholic, the year that I also met some of his other demons.

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Wednesday
Dec072011

She'sWrite: An Inspiration to Change - Kathy Pacholski

Have you ever met someone that’s inspired you to change? That’s recently happened to me.

Fifteen months after a stroke, Kathy Pacholski climbed 103 flights of the Willis Tower.I met Kathy Pacholski. She is a stroke survivor warrior. She was very healthy when she had a stroke 15 months ago, relearned to do practically everything from folding laundry to walking and then on Nov. 6 climbed 103 flights of the Willis Tower in Chicago.

Impressive, right? I wrote about Kathy’s journey on The Huffington Post here and we talked a lot on the phone. Our conversations would start with typical interview questions and then flow into a talk between friends.

We finally met face to face when I went to capture her picture at her school and we hugged. She’s good people.

She’s a mom of three boys, her youngest is in high school and the other two are off to college. She has always been a positive person and doesn’t understand why anyone *wouldn’t* be positive.

There’s no “poor me” kind of sentiment here. Though she’s not nauseatingly positive, where she’s all peppy like a little sprite that you just want to smack. No she has times when she’s down, her son and therapist told me so, but the key is she gets back up. (Cue Donnie McClurkin…)

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Wednesday
Jun152011

She'sWrite: Reveling in my Land of Nod

Greetings and salutations from my own little Land of Nod. I arrived here on Jan. 4 and it’s the best place I’ve been in about five years. I believe you would refer to this dreamy locale as “maternity leave.”

Photo by Eric Lynn Photography.I’m one of the lucky few Americans who has a job waiting for her after taking a maternity leave that’s longer than the 12 weeks granted under the Family Medical Leave Act. I recognize and am soaking up this blessing (and it’s so sad that my situation isn’t more common, but I digress…)

When Logan was born, I took off seven months, and it was needed. He was colicky, I had breastfeeding woes the first three months and despite all of my reading to try to prepare myself, I felt completely inadequate and lost.

This time, it’s been loads easier because Ethan is an easy-going kid and I’ve got second-time-around-mommy-know-how. Plus Logan is still going to daycare, so many days it’s just me and my smiley infant. And it’s perfect.

I spend my days chatting it up with the little guy (he’s a great listener,) lying on the floor watching him play and listening to him coo. When he first grabbed a toy, or rolled over or sat on the floor without tipping over, I whooped it up so much you would have thought Publisher’s Clearinghouse knocked on the door.

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Monday
May302011

She'sWrite: Semper Fi -- A Marine's Run

We usually run the guest columns of She'sWrite on Wednesday mornings. But as you'll discover, this column just had to be published on Memorial Day.

Looking to change up my exercise routine, I ran a race Sunday that honored those in the military. The real honor came at the end when I cheered for Yuyri Zmysly, a man who doctors said could forever be in a vegetative state.

Photo courtesy of Salute, Inc.It was Salute Inc.’s “got freedom?” run. My crazy-runner friend texted me on Friday to see if I was running it. I smirked, running it, ha! I hadn’t even heard of it. At 5:30 race morning, I decided to give it a go.

I left the boys at home and headed out. At the starting line, I stood there, feeling pretty proud of myself for leaving the boys to go run a 5K on a whim. (There was a 10K option, which naturally I didn’t do.) Then the starting gun went off. And we were off.

The weather was cool and it was strangely foggy. I felt good the whole race and there was a quaint sense of community as several event volunteers were local high school kids or Girl and Boy Scout troops. Also, many people stood in their front lawns with their pajamas and morning coffee cheering us on. One woman even turned on her garden hose to mist us.

Soon the race was over. Me and my crazy-runner friend (who ran the 10K) were gabbing over bananas, when we noticed the crowd at the post-race party grew quiet and walked over to line the last few blocks of the course.

We followed suit and heard shouts of: “Here he comes!” “There he is!” Standing on my tippy toes, I saw him. He was in a wheelchair, his body was thin, his fingers were slender and gripped the air. Wow. I wonder what happened.

He had a mini-entourage around his wheelchair. Well before the finish line, they all stopped and a burly man stood in front of the chair. The man helped Yuriy to his feet, held out his arms for support as Yuriy took a step. We all held our breath.

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Wednesday
May252011

She'sWrite: Fashion Choices for Everyday Women

Our guest columnist She'sWrite takes a look at the spring and summer fashions she hopes to incorporate into her wardrobe -- and the ones that she'll be staying far, far away from.

Finally. Balmy weather has arrived in Chicago. We can safely put away our parkas and it’s time to step out in my favorite fashion season: Spring/Summer.

From American designer Derek Lam's spring/summer collection.I enjoy this season because it’s always the most fun and creative. This year there’s a lot of trends, some whimsical, others retro, but the best thing is that many of them have figure-flattering pieces for us everyday women.

Trends I like:

* 1970s- Invoke the rockstar’s chic girlfriend

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. Skinny jeans, cute as they may be, are not the big-bootied woman’s friend. (Unless paired with chunky shoes.) I have a serious badunk and short legs, therefore I praise the straight-legged pants, boot cut, or bell bottoms. This season, it’s the high-waisted pants with a fashionable flair at the end of your stems. Keep in mind, not everyone can rock the high-waisted pants though. (Ahem, Jessica Simpson.)

Another piece from this '70s trend that I find appealing is the return of the maxi dress, this time it’s sheer. Maxi dresses are so comfy, though sometimes I wonder if I’m unsuccessfully hiding my flab or truly looking fab.

Also platform wedges are back on the shelves. I love these since A) I’m short and B) I’m a mom. That means I can be cute at the summer barbecue while chasing my kids, because I’m not going to break an ankle, like I surely would in stilettos.

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