By Danielle Echols
“Making it through motherhood with the grace of a camel on ice skates”
Let me start by saying this-ALL mothers should win awards for being masters of ALL things…EVER! As Community Partnerships Coordinator, I have the pleasure of meeting amazing moms all the time. They are teachers/care providers/counselors/coaches…the list could go on. How they manage it all is beyond me! Mothers are tasked to care for these little people who come into the world and switch everything up. Within months, I am sure every parent has enough stories to last a lifetime. If only some of those random crazy moments could be captured and revisited…
Well, look no further than the blog Motherhood-WHAT?! Uptown (Chicago) mother Taylor Wood, has created a hilariously witty and insightful blog about the joys and trials of motherhood. Her blog offers a peek into the world of her, her husband, her 2 year old son Connor, and her future daughter Daphne. Her quirky sensibility quickly engages the reader; whether you have children or not, you are bound to find joy in Taylor’s vivacious tales of everyday life. After a few articles, you will feel like you’ve known Taylor and her family forever! Recently, I had the pleasure of talking to Taylor about motherhood and her growing blog. See some of our conversation below:
Name/Writer: Taylor Wood
Children: 1 son (Connor) he’s 2-21/2 and Daphne is due April 4th
DD: What made you decide to write a blog?
It started out just writing random things when I was pregnant and putting them online, and people just started reading them and it just kept growing. Midway through my pregnancy, I decided I was going to stay home with him (Connor) and that’s when I just kept writing.
DD: Had you written before?
I majored in communication studies, I started out computer science, but majored in communication studies and that’s about as close as I got to any kind of formal training.
DD: When you started writing, what was the angle you wanted to take?
I think that’s what surprised me most about writing the blog, was finding what to write about. I started off with personal stories and then I tried to do a lot of sponsored stuff and giveaways and contest. It was a lot of experimentation at first. I thought I was going to do a lot of product reviews, but it turned out to be not as much about that and just my random musings on parenthood in general. Those are the posts that actually work best on my blog personally. It turned out to be me just talking about my life. I thought those would be the least interesting, but it turns out those are the most successful.
DD: Do you find it easy to incorporate your voice in your writing?
I always try to write as I speak. When people read my stuff they feel like it’s me talking. I always strive to have that dynamic. The type of things I write about, are the types of things I would say to you in real life.
DD: What are some of your more memorable parenting stories?
The incredible apoopcalyses (diapers). I think there’s the standard cliché like the first steps or when he starts talking. I think the first time that Connor actually wanted to hug me instead of me cuddling him. The first time he came to me and said “Hug,” it’s just a little moment, just a tiny little moment, but it was so so so nice to have that affection back. To know this little person I’ve put so much time into, actually loves me back…(wow!) not just me loving him so much.
DD: Do you see yourself diversifying your writing?
I could see it evolving… parenting is the topic that I’m interested in. I really like reading books about parenting. I would love to write a book about the Mommy-Wars one day. (DD: What is that?) Any choice you make is apparently a part of a Mommy-War: breastfeeding vs. formula, strollers vs. baby wearing…moms are just tearing each other down. We’re more alike than we are different, but these issues seem to divide moms.
DD: What are your top 3 parenting tips?
The first one I would say is go with your instincts. If you like something or you want to do something go with what feels right. The second one is it’s probably a good idea to limit your input, your intake of information: whether that’s from mom groups or books…you can easily overload yourself and go crazy. It’s hard to hear yourself if there are too many voices in the room. Give yourself some slack. Take a breather everything will work out for the best.
DD: What was the best advice someone gave you?
I think the best parenting tip I got was that you are your own person. That you aren’t defined by being a parent, that is only part of you. And that part of you is being an adult person. A lot of times it’s almost seen as a bad thing if you take that time for yourself…go for a run…recharge. You’re still the people you were before children and you will still be people after they fly the nest. Don’t lose yourself in just being a parent. There’s a lot of interesting things about you, not just being a parent and remember what they are.
Taylor Wood’s articles can also be found in Chicago Parent Magazine. She is a Florida native, who has made her home in Chicago.
Interviewed and written by Danielle Echols