My Latest Score: The Lover Petunia Dress.
Over-eager for spring, I snagged this stunning, ladylike floral dress from Lover, shown hanging off my new bookcase in the snap above. Maybe ideal for Valentine’s day? I also love this, which is a tad more friendly on the wallet.
You’re Sooooo Popular:
The most popular items on Le Blog this week:
+The book I can’t put down. Not great literature, but a serious page-turner.
+My new perfume! I can’t stop talking about it…
+A lip tint with a cult following. Apparently several of you are joining the ranks!
+A ridiculously chic dress at a ridiculously discounted price.
+One of my favorite secret sources for vintage decor finds.
#Turbothot: Decision-Making in Your 30s.
I’ve been struggling to write a post about the identity and role transitions I’ve gone through over the past year — from start-up co-founder to new mother to full-time writer/blogger and primary caregiver for our baby girl with the unexpected also full-time role of household manager (more on that at some point, but that element of working from home/staying at home surprised me! it’s a lot!) — but I can’t manage to prune my thoughts into a readable arrangement that I deem passably interesting. I’ve been chatting a lot with my friends — women with demanding careers, women with multiple children and varying degrees of help, women who work for themselves, women between jobs, women unhappy in their jobs, women struggling to get pregnant, women not interested in having children any time soon — and it strikes me that so many of us in our late 20s and early 30s are operating in a shared headspace regardless of the diversity of life experiences we’re going through: we are all grappling with the (occasionally crippling) feeling that every decision we make now will dramatically impact the rest of our lives. In our early 20s, it felt that we had space to make mistakes. We could try one job and change to another without too much of an impact on our career. We could date around without worrying whether we were seeing someone with long-term potential. We could uproot ourselves to “try LA” or “try New York” without thinking about the implications for career, savings, family, etc. But now I find that many of us feel an intense level of pressure to “make the right decision.” OR ELSE.
“Should I start having kids now? Because if I don’t, I probably can’t have more than 2.”
“Should I change careers now? Because if I don’t, I’m probably stuck in this industry for the long haul.”
“Should I have a second child? Because if I do, I probably need to stop working to make it work out financially since childcare is so expensive.”
“Should I stay at home with my son while he’s so young? I want to, but I’m scared that I’ll regret leaving the workforce and be unable to get back into it because it’s so cutthroat.”
So many of my girlfriends are carrying the weight of the world on their shoulders as they weigh the pros and cons of these life decisions. I don’t have much helpful to offer in the way of consolation because I’m right there with them. The only constructive observations that I continue to return to are these:
- One of my dear friends once told me: “Everything that happens in life is the best thing that can happen. Whether it’s health issues, changes in careers, financial shifts — no matter how painful it is in the short-term, it’s all leading to something else that’s the best thing that can happen to you.” << This, from a friend who bounced back from emergent, life-saving surgery and has gone through considerable difficulty in its aftermath. Talk about perspective! I’m trying it on for size: no matter what I’m facing, it’s all a stepping stone to the next thing, and it’s meant to be. (I realize, by the way, that this perspective will not be universally palatable — fate v. agency is possibly the oldest conflict in literary/intellectual history. I guess you can see where I land on that one.)
- My best friend took a psychology class at UVA and I remember her being fascinated by the concept of choice-supportive bias, or “the tendency to retroactively ascribe positive attributes to an option one has selected.” This doesn’t necessarily mean you are making the right choice, but it means that, once a decision has made, you immediately get to work rallying your emotional and intellectual energy around rationalizing that decision. This, in a weird way, comforts me. It means that once I make a choice, given time, I will probably start to feel pretty damn good about it.
- You do you // you do you // you do you. It can be hard to feel confident about your decisions when you feel shamed by them, and I can think of very few women who haven’t withstood prying questions, judgmental comments, or uninformed observations from the peanut gallery. You know the type: “Are you thinking about having kids soon?” to a woman privately struggling through IVF; “I could never work while my daughter is this little. I’d only see her for, like, an hour a day — how awful” to a new mom returning to work and feeling weepy about it; “What do you do besides take care of your kids during the day?” to a state-at-home mother to two who is exhausted and in need of some alone time. These questions often reflect more about the insecurities and ignorances of the commenter, but they can often lodge deep in your soul, biting away at the little conviction you’ve managed to build around your decisions. And to this I say, “you do you, you do you, you do.” Go boldly into the decisions you’ve made and to hell with the peanut gallery! (Easier said than done. Woof. The comments can be tough-going; I carry them with me.)
More soon…I invite your thoughts below!
#Shopaholic: The Ladylike Dress.
+Call me crazy, but I’m obsessed with these. I just don’t understand what kind of weather merits their use…
+I’ve heard great things about these onesies — has anyone tried them?
+Digging the space-dyed/marbleized/heathered effect of these joggers! V. chic!
+This bag has quite the cult following, and is now fully restocked.
+Into this sweater.
+GUYS. These chic Illesteva shades are on super sale!
+Has anyone tried this as a sleep-aid? I just read about it and am very curious — I find that I wake up so frequently throughout the night these days, but maybe that’s just #momlife?
+For my expecting mamas — this is totally the kind of non-maternity thing I’d wear while pregnant. Love!