Angst about anxiety

I hear about a documentary and I think “damn, that sounds so interesting!  I’d love to see that.”  But, I almost never do.  I barely get to the movies unless I’m escorting my kids to an animated film…then I prefer to go to a theater that has wine.  It relaxes me when I see animals talking.

But, when I was invited to watch a documentary about teens and anxiety I did watch it.  Not on a “screener”  ( which I NEVER get unlike everyone else I know in Los Angeles), not streaming, but got in my car and drove.  Drove to Westwood no less.  I hate driving to Westwood.  Not as much as I hate driving to Glendale, but much more than driving Downtown.

Why did I go? I now have a tween.  I can see that middle school seems more challenging than elementary school.  Not academically, but socially, the vibe, the lack of play.  Schools seem to think that at 12 no one wants unstructured outdoor time.  Join a sports team!  (more anxiety.)   My husband came with me.  He has already had 3 other children go through teen years and he seemed to have less insight into the process than I have.

The movie is called “Angst“.  It’s a lot of people talking about their anxiety, so I did feel a bit anxious watching it, but the good news ( and for short attention span Brogdon this is very good) it clocks in just under an hour.  There are different teens describing what they went through, some of what made them better.  Various therapist talking about treating teens with anxiety.  Now, there were moments watching were I thought, “Gee shut up you nice looking, largely white kids who live in America and are scared to go to school.  You are not in Cambodia scared your back yard has unexploded land mines.”   But, then I am not worried about land mines either and my children’s worries are probably more like the kids in this film.  Urban, metro, educated families. Makes sense they would get anxious.. they have a mom who stresses about driving to Westwood  ( also cause it’s all crap chain restaurants, except Falafel King, thank God that is still there).

Two things really jumped out at me as take aways for parents:  1) if your kid has chronic tummy aches it is probably anxiety.  Which doesn’t mean “tough it out”, but address the underlying issue.  2) one therapist said it would help young people to process feelings if their parents did openly as well.  Example a parent might share with their youngin:  “I had a disagreement with my friend at work.  I didn’t know why she was mad at me and I ignored it, but it started to bother me, so I asked her to get a coffee with me and we worked it out.”  Remember being a teen in your darkened bedroom with headphones on listening to Pete Townsend’s solo works and thinking ” I am the ONLY ONE in the world who feels like I do”  ( on hi low carpeting as I recall).

When Mark told some friend’s of ours about it the next day he summed it up well, “It scared the shit out of me.”

I don’t want to be a spoiler, but near the end of the film a FAMOUS person surprises one of the kids and speaks frankly about their struggles with anxiety and depression  (which kinda sorta go together a lot).  It’s a real high point and I’m sure the producers high fived when they booked THIS PERSON. “woo- hoo, we have our ending”

So, check out the film.  The film makers have a comprehensive website with resources.  Also, if you want the film to be shown at your school or youth organization they will set that up for free.  They will help facilitate talking points, etc.

Cool “something” coming soon

So,  long story short:  As my kids got older, as youtube dominated the net, as I lost my production partners (aka…people who paid for cameras, editing)  I’ve kind let this thing die.. a bit.  It’s also WAY harder to making any nickels compared to the old days (2008).  Now everyone and their dog has vlogs.

Well, my old partners have morphed into Kin Community and they have kindly handed me all my vids, the rights to this site, etc. (here are the keys, start tagging!  So, I would like to re-engage with coolmom.com.  However, I still have who are at an age where vlogging about them is more problematic than when they were still in diapers ( Vivien is 11, Rex 8)  They know how to say things like “Don’t post that picture mommy”.   I do not have financial partners so my production value will look like home made porno… with clothes on.

This kid has no idea he is being exploited so his mom can turn a buck. Lordy, I miss that sausage leg

This kid has no idea he is being exploited so his mom can turn a buck.
Lordy, I miss that sausage leg

HERE ARE ALL THE 500 PLUS VIDEOS I DID.. GOOD, BAD, INBETWEEN.

Also, as my kids become more independent so did I.  I  do not identify myself as a mom as much.  I still like “you are a great mom” as my fave compliment, but I also have discovered my body again… sex… exercise… reading…. washing my car.  Things that were not possible just a few years ago.

Between my own years of community work ( and some guy named Trump, heard of him?)  I’m engaged politically.

I had a Food Network show ( you might have heard about it). Helped launch my husband’s latest venture Prawn.

So, this site will be less cute kiddo vids and I think more Cool food mom, Cool activist mom,  Cool mom whose breasts still look damn good after nursing two babies for two years each… just a few ideas.  I  also want to spruce up some of the best ones from the old days.

When then President Obama you to stop by.   My talented friend Ronnie Butler jr.

When then President Obama you to stop by.
My talented friend Ronnie Butler jr.

Have some more?  Let me know…  Look for me here.. breasts and all!   Let’s see where this goes.

MORE inappropriate sandwich shape

My mind drifts as I make my kids sandwiches for their school lunch.  I started off thinking I would make a little girl sandwich.

 

But, then I keep going.  What if the girl then stuck her finger in an electrical socket?

 

 

Or, when she grows up, goes to college and parties a little hard.  This would be her sleeping off a bender.

 

At least I did stop myself from making a sandwich that showed what that girl did that night and with what!

 

 

 

Muffinlicious

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=92B2I1jHBKk]

Curvy women, rounded bellies, imperfect moms unite! We don’t have to go all Paula Dean, but a little belly is ok.  Why fight that last 10 ( or 20) pounds that hang on our middle. Embrace it.  We have had kids, we are not getting any younger.  Sure if I had Madonna money I’d have Sergio come and work me out every morning followed by a “massage”.  But, let’s deal in middle class reality.

Let’s celebrate who we are!

Perhaps in song!


Momversation: Naked Mom Confessions

Oh, god, meant to post this Saturday… but the mom brain is not firing these days. I was on a plane to SF for a night and thought… now what have I forgotten?? Oh, new post, that’s right.

I did dress myself and go for 22 hours up to San Francisco by myself for my goddaughter’s 2nd birthday. It was great to see some of my best girlfriends. I’m always stressed leaving my kids and ready to abort the trip at any moment, but it was fun to be at a pool party and realize I didn’t have to watch out for anyone; if I heard a cry, it wasn’t mine. I did have to do a lot of pumping and battled with the TSA to get my blue ice pack on the plane.

But I digress, I think this is one of the funniest Momversations we have done. The editing makes it… and of course my flimsy robe!

Hey, I bet many people are naked when they are at the computer… hmm, but I digress.

Joely Fisher: Funny Mom

I’ve always had a soft spot for funny women. Since I like to think of myself as one of them, and I know that women in comedy don’t always get a fair shake. Cheri Oteri doesn’t get a movie deal and Jimmy Fallon does?

Joely Fisher co-stars with Brad Garrett in ‘Til Death on Fox. She plays a mom with teenagers, but in real life she has two young-adult stepkids (I can relate) and two young girls. She was on “The Fashion Team” yesterday and Lawrence and I loved her!

She had the usual earmarks of a good guest – amiable and up for anything. Sure, she’d chat about swimsuits and scented candles! But she brought her own unique bawdy sense of humor. Lawrence is known to be affectionate with our female guests and always has at least one segment where he dances and cuddles. Bless her heart when it was Joely and my turn to begin a segment together she said, “Let’s cuddle, too.” We discussed if she should cup my breasts as well, but nixed it for camera. Love someone who is so unafraid and takes risks with comedy which is crucial. Made me step up my game.

I already knew her darling sister Trisha from one of my favorite hangs, Treehouse Social Club. A brilliant place for moms where kids can play and take classes while moms get to eat real food! Like with a waitress and everything. For months, our Mondays were Miss Merideth ballet for Viv while Rayna the dear waitress brought me an espresso and a smoothie. Treehouse is where Vivien had her first ballet recital

I asked Joely for one bit of mom advice she would pass on to others. She said when her 7 year old daughter and 2 and half year old get into it, she leaves them alone. Or at least tries not to interfere. She thinks it’s better for them to work out their conflicts and relationship themselves. This resonated with me as so often my mom friends and I try to be UN Ambassadors a bit too much in play dates. My siblings and I beat each other up and now they are my best pals.