Motherhood

A Daybed of One’s Own

A single mom's story

Writer and editor Alyssa Shelasky lives in a one-bedroom Brooklyn apartment with her 10-month-old daughter, Hazel. Until recently, they shared her small nursery at night. But, as a single mom with a new romantic relationship and an increasingly independent toddler, she had to make a change. Here’s her story of how a velvety piece of furniture changed everything…


I’m a relatively calm person. I value composure. I’ve often contemplated getting a small tattoo that reads: Courage is grace under pressure.

Sure, some things stress me out: chopsticks; aggressive air conditioning; love and marriage; that I’ll never read Just Kids for the first time again; all the hardcore serious suffering happening in the world every single day; decaf drinkers.

One thing that arguably should have stressed me out? Having a baby on my own. Did it? Not really.

That’s not to say I didn’t think deeply about the single-mother-by-choice choice. At 36.5 years old, after a rough breakup in Rome that knocked me off my feet (and then straight back to Brooklyn), I knew two things were true: I was seriously romantically burnt out and all I really wanted was to become a mom anyway.

Around that time, I contacted two women – friends of friends – both embarking on the sperm donor journey. Over coffees and croissants, I inhaled their stories separately. I took feverish notes. They were both so beautiful and badass. It didn’t take long for the donor decision to feel blazingly right for me. My family and friends unanimously agreed. And a few months later, once I learned that the IUI procedure worked (holy shit!), I never flinched. I never looked back. Not once. Not ever.

But back to my so-called inner grace. I remained calm when I brought my daughter, Hazel Delilah Shelasky, home one month early, a little small — determined to grow her ferociously in the October sun. Breastfeeding was excruciating, but I tried to stay composed. And while my family helped me every single day, at night I was alone. For about 300 nights straight, I was alone.

I’m not saying any of this for applause – millions of moms have it harder — I’m just trying to make it clear that freaking out is not my nature; that I can knock myself up, have an emergency C-section and survive on Kind Bars and kinder people for 8 months straight.

But when I decided to move out of my daughter’s bedroom and into the living room, now that almost ruined me.

I live in a one-bedroom apartment. From day one, Hazel and I shared a room and often a bed. Until she was five months old, she barely touched her crib. At six months, with guidance from our pediatrician, I “lightly” sleep trained her. It kind-of worked, but just like her mama, she’s an extremely light sleeper. We continued to wake each other up several times a night.

The reality is, Hazel is bursting with love for friends, neighbors, country music, the subway, the bus, brunch and bejeweled human beings, but sleep? Not so much. It’s just not her thing. So, I gave up on it, too. Which was okay; I had everything else. (Although on more than one occasion I did google, “Can you die from no sleep?”)

Then, a few months ago, I started dating someone I really liked. (And still do!) At night, we needed our privacy. This — combined with our collective, ongoing sleep issues — left Hazel and me with no other option: I had to move out of the nursery. It was time! It was time. I would have to sleep in the living room. So, I devised a plan.

The answer came in the form of a daybed, specifically the Devyn daybed from Restoration Hardware, which I had an instant online crush on. I proceeded to obsess about ordering this daybed for 30 days straight. I measured and re-measured. I made frenemies with fabric swatches. I stalked my dear designer neighbor, Sasha Berlin, even as she went into labor. Seriously, it was easier for me to buy magical sperm than this hunk of tufted velvet.

The daybed decision made me nuts. For the first time in the history of being Hazel’s mom, I felt fragile. Should I or shouldn’t I? Will I or won’t I? WTF is wrong with me?!

What I realize now is that I was using the daybed as a crutch for something else. Since the day she was born — no, the day I made the life-changing decision to (at least try to) have her alone it was mama and kiddo forever. The two of us against the world. I would have Hazel’s back until the day I died, and even after that. So, how could I leave her?

The reality was, life with Hazel — whose every breath, giggle and grunt I knew by heart, and who woke up seven times a night by laughing, not even crying! – was evolving. As it should! Her needs were shifting, my needs were shifting, our needs were shifting. And that’s gorgeous! Our little duo was makin’ moves. I was no longer a new single mama wandering around in the dark. I was a mother with a plan that would better my family.

So, I leaned in to the changes. I ordered the daybed. I ordered a twin-size mattress online. I ordered pillows and sheets, so that I’d have a sophisticated couch by day — and a super comfy bed by night.

Everything arrived a week later. Hazel, my peasant-dress-wearing, clementine-loving, happy-go-lucky extrovert, had a field day with all the friendly delivery guys. Her smile was so big, I honestly thought her face might break. Immediately, we delighted in her own new room. It felt sweet, whimsy and airy without the clutter of my bulky mattress and alpaca throws.

Still, as I said goodnight to her that first evening, I couldn’t help but tear up while walking away. I already missed her. But I lit a candle. I poured some Tempranillo wine. I curled up to my friend Julia Turshen’s new cookbook, Small Victories. I texted my guy to come over and see if we fit together on the daybed. Sure enough, it felt nice and adult.

By the end of the week, both Hazel and I were getting deep, healthy sleep – which was really the only thing that mattered.

Maybe it has something to do with the pleasure of having her own space, or the newfound touch of independence, but these days Hazel is more luminous than ever. And the restoration of my hardware feels quite triumphant.

I am calm again, although the greatest thing I learned is that I don’t have to be so tough – that a “never let ’em see ya sweat” ethos is a lost cause in this sappy love song called motherhood.

Because there will be nights that I will weep into velvety upholstery for no reason whatsoever… and there will be nights that I will crawl in and lie on her floor praying to God or plotting a frittata… and there will be nights that I won’t sleep at all because I’m just too scared, excited or overwhelmed by all of it.

But tonight, I’ll sleep just fine. Hopefully, I’ll dream. After all, they do come true.

A single mom's story

Alyssa and Hazel.

A single mom's story

Family photos.

A single mom's story

Hazel’s nursery.


Alyssa Shelasky has contributed to New York Magazine, Conde Nast Traveler, Cosmo and Self. She is also the author of Apron Anxiety: My Messy Affairs In & Out of the Kitchen.

P.S. My motherhood mantra and a quote about single parenthood.

(Photos by Christine Han for Cup of Jo. Alyssa’s dress by Morgan Carper.)

  1. Mallory says...

    Beautiful story. I’m a single mother also and relate to the “us against the world” dynamic.

  2. Savannah J says...

    I realise I am slow but I’m wondering if you’re happy with the daybed for both sleeping and lounging on?
    I’m considering getting one shipped to Australia, which is pricey, but I can’t find anything over here anywhere near as nice as the one you have.
    Beautiful story too.
    Thanks :)

  3. Emily says...

    Can you please share where I can find the fringe pillows?

    • Hi! They are so old I can barely remember, but I blv Anthropologie!

  4. so so sweet. thank you for sharing, I really enjoyed your humor. My fav line: “I’m just trying to make it clear that freaking out is not my nature; that I can knock myself up, have an emergency C-section and survive on Kind Bars and kinder people for 8 months straight”. fantastic!

  5. Kristen says...

    Brought tears to my eyes. Oh, the joys and hardships of motherhood! Is there anything more beautiful?

  6. Shannon says...

    A wonderfully sweet and simple story of motherhood.

  7. I absolutely loved this piece. Thank you for sharing.

  8. i read every post, but rarely comment… BUT! But. This is so beautiful, I’ve read it twice through. Beautiful writing, poetic. It’s a beautiful compliment to the personal tone and genuine writing that is the great hallmark of this site, for me. Three Cheers!! Thank you for being such a bright spot in the interwebs, for lovely voices and stories like this.

  9. Kat says...

    This story touched me so much! I’m a sperm-donor daughter, my mom had me when she was 36. When I was still a baby, she then found me a dad (as she once put it!) and they’ve been very happily married since I was 4. When it occurred to me that other kids hadn’t also been the flower girls at their parents weddings, and that something was different, she explained it by telling me that she wanted to have me so much, she couldn’t wait for anyone else! My mom and I will forever be soulmates in an indescribable way. Such a deep love, but it’s so rarely talked about, so it warmed my heart to read about it! So much power to you, Alyssa and Hazel!

    • After over a decade of writing on the internet, this is the best comment I ever read. I’ll never forget it. Thank you so much Kat! Love, Alyssa (and Hazel!)

  10. Joanna says...

    Oh man, I loved this piece; having recently become a single mum to a three and a four year old (my husband left us) the below line really resonated with me…

    “The two of us against the world. I would have Hazel’s back until the day I died, and even after that. So, how could I leave her?”

    I can echo that sentiment with every single part of who I am (‘cept multiply it by two), it’s just the three of us against the world now and I will always have their backs!

    I love the beautiful stories you guys produce; please keep doing it!

  11. I love how fast I read this! Like breezing through her story feeling happy while doing so! I need her writing in my life!

  12. Of the many beautiful things I’ve read in A Cup of Jo, this is one of the most gorgeous! <3

  13. Thank you for sharing such beautiful motherhood stories. I love the google search “can you die from no sleep”…I hear ya!
    P.S. where is Alyssa’s amazing dress from?

  14. Jill says...

    Oh boy, this is beautiful.

  15. Megan says...

    Thank you Alyssa and Cup of Jo–as another 36.5 year old who just went through a massive break up, and who was considering doing the single mom thing even before the break up–I really appreciated this. Seeing Alyssa’s success story, and her beautiful daughter and space, makes me more confident that I could do the same thing.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      you totally could! sending so much strength and love as you consider this decision! xo

  16. Theresa says...

    Lovely.

  17. April says...

    What a beautiful post!

  18. allison says...

    wheres the day bed?! lol

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      it’s the grey daybed in the top photo, thank you!

  19. That is a really, really beautiful story! Thanks for sharing! You always post the best stuff Jo! (+team Lexi, etc!)

  20. Can we just have more pictures of Hazel bc she is SO FRACKIN’ CUTE!

  21. That is a beautiful daybed and its so true sometimes the right piece of furniture makes a huge difference to life.

    Shruthi
    http://nyambura.co

  22. Such a sweet story!

  23. JoAnna says...

    This was lovely. As a new mom to a 3+ month old, it made me tear up! I already mourn the day we move her into her own room. Thank you, Joanna, for cultivating such a wonderful little community for women.

  24. Olivia says...

    Perfect timing. My little girl is due in just two weeks, and only now am I being flooded with realities and fears and self doubt. I have my husband, but I feel like I fail him more often as a wife than I bring him joy. Will I be able to bring joy to my little girl or will I fail her too?

    Reading Alyssa’s experience gives me hope. We are all imperfect but as long as we keep our hearts open and let joy and sorrow come naturally, we’ll all be alright.

    • Erin says...

      Olivia,
      Everything you’re feeling is justifiable. But please know, once that baby is placed in your arms, you are all she needs. You are the perfect recipe. And even if it’s hard, you will get by. And one day, many many years from now, you’ll realize that you did/are doing a good job. Good luck with everything!!! August babies are the best :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      olivia, hang in there! i felt the same way before my children were born. i think it’s very normal to feel nervous. creating a new life is amazing and miraculous and terrifying all at the same time. i love (and agree with) what erin said: you are all she needs. you don’t need to be perfect, you just need to love her. sending you a big hug!

    • Erin says...

      As a mother of a two-year-old girl and pregnant with her second, these wise words from a wise woman (Ann Voskamp) were like balm to me lately: Motherhood is a calling to come closer, not a command to be more. Bullseye.

  25. Vicky says...

    They are both so beautiful!

  26. Hanka Gerretsen says...

    I love this story about motherhood and independance. I would like to have children myself, but at the moment it is not yet the right time. I really like to combine my career ambitions with having children. At the moment I’m an artist and I’m making a career-switch to getting a fashion stylist (something I wanted from my fifteenth). After starting up my career as a fashion stylist (after two years from january 2017) I would like to have a child with my boyfriend for 22 years now. I hope I will accomplish that dream.

  27. liz says...

    My favourite part about this piece – and the reason that I’m commenting for the first time in all my years of reading – is the plastic push toy! What a relief to see this in a beautifully styled home. We all know that kids love them, but they seem to be a dirty little secret in the sea of all-white skandi design: as if they get pushed into closets and hidden in favour of blonde wood toys whenever a camera comes out.

  28. Lizzie Maxwell says...

    What an awesome article, and fabulous photos!!!! So proud of you!

  29. spark says...

    I really enjoyed reading this, firstly for its story about a mum and her girl and secondly, the writing is just fab. I felt like I was receiving wisdom from a favorite old aunt. Just gorgeous!

  30. Cliodhna Russell says...

    My husband was cheating on me with my friend and i almost lost him till i was able to contact Robinson buckler for help, He was a great helper, he saved my marriage from the shame and the embarr[@]ssment, He restored my marriage just as he promised, my husband does not cheat on me anymore, who wants to save his/her relationship should contact email;robinson.buckler@yahoo. com ,

  31. Where is her dress from??! It’s amazing!

  32. Holly says...

    The pillowcase! What about the pillowcase :) ?

  33. Ms Nina G says...

    This is a really sweet piece. I know more than a few single IVF moms in Brooklyn – I hope you guys all get to hang out and raise your kids together. So inspiring.

  34. Everything about this post was lovely, inspiring & honest. I read through it twice. And what a beautiful mother & daughter!!

  35. “Single mother by choice” is a phrase that really ought to be retired. It’s as if to say, “yes, I’m a single mother, but I’m not one of THOSE single mothers.” We’ve all made choices to get where we are. We are all the only ones there to rock our babies back to sleep all night long.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Rachel, I really see your point. What a beautiful, heartfelt comment. Thank you.

    • Jen says...

      Beautifully said.

    • Jo says...

      Thoughtfully said. I am always a mother both with or without a mate.

  36. Lisa says...

    Beautifully written. So perfectly captures the feeling of new motherhood. “And the restoration of my hardware feels quite triumphant” absolutely takes the proverbial cake!

  37. leeniev says...

    I’m actually kind of in love with the other sofa… can you let us know where that one’s from?

    • Hi! It is an oldie but goodie from the ABC Carpet & Home outlet. Thank you!

    • leeniev says...

      Thanks!

  38. Lorena says...

    I loved this beautiful piece. A gorgeous love letter to motherhood.

  39. Porkchop says...

    In my living room I have a futon couch that turns into a double bed. I always leave it turned down as a bed as my cats and I love lying on it and watching TV together.

  40. Loved this post. Made me realize how much I rely on my husband to raise our kids with me. But going it alone from the get-go? Brave is an understatement!

  41. ND says...

    I loved this! I read Alyssa’s blog way back in the day and this felt like an update on an old friend; glad to hear she’s thriving :)

    • kerri says...

      SAME – i knew i recognized her! and am now having flashbacks to reading her blog way, way back in the day. absolutely love her voice and totally agree- glad she’s thriving!

  42. Wonderful essay – beautiful, articulate, insightful and descriptive. Loved having a single mother perspective, which we don’t see here too often.

  43. “…that I can knock myself up.” Amazing writing. This was fantastic. Excuse me while I google this Alyssa and fall down a rabbit hole of her work for the next hour (or 4).

    • Hahah — did you find anything good?! xx

  44. Kattia says...

    Hi where did she get Hazels sweet pink dress from? Also loved this post! Thank you!

  45. Summer says...

    This was beautiful. :’) Congrats to Alyssa and Hazel for having one another!

  46. Lisa says...

    So beautifully written (though as a new-ish mother my first thought was “how did you sleep train? Did it work?”).
    We were recently contemplating moving to a two bed which meant our son would have his own room, and I also got quite weepy at the thought of not having him so near (my husband was psyched at the thought of uninterrupted sleep)

  47. Nadia says...

    What a beautiful piece of writing, what a beautiful baby and what a beautiful mother! I felt all the feels reading this – I’m a single mother too and my little guy has never been a great sleeper either. But we women are strong, resilient and courageous and I love how Alyssa showed that in this post!!

  48. Laurel says...

    Wow, really beautiful essay. And kudos mama, I admire you. Single mamas, I know you don’t do it for the praise, but you really are the badasses of the world. Well done!

  49. Leah says...

    Read and loved Alyssa’s memoir a little while ago. So happy to learn about the happy turn of events in her becoming a mom on her own! And great to see her pop up over here.

    When my boy was a tiny babe, I used to repeatedly google “how early is too early to sleep train?!”

  50. This is so lovely and wonderful to read! It reminded me of my mom and all my amazing mama friends, and the decisions they all have to make to balance their babies’ happiness with their own. Moms are awesome and resilient. Thanks for sharing this.

  51. Hope says...

    I love Alyssa!! I used to read her Glamour.com column obsessively. What a treat to have her on Cup of Jo. Hazel is gorgeous.

  52. jean says...

    First of all what a beautiful name: Hazel Delilah Shelasky! And what a touching, hilarious and truly inspiring post. (googling ” Can a person die of no sleep?”!!!) It captures the rewarding and emotional ups and downs of being a mother. And kudos to Alyssa for going it solo and sharing her story. What a strong woman and what a lucky baby to have her as a mom. Loved this!

  53. Ashley H. says...

    I’m not a mom, don’t really ever have plans to become one (we have four dogs…not sure how a baby would fit in!), but this was still a really great piece to read. She has a way with words. :)

  54. Rachel K says...

    Beautiful writing and story. I love that this piece and the parenting in Iceland story both featured single mothers. Thank you for consistently showing humanity and diversity

  55. Briana says...

    I really loved this piece. I’m single in my mid-thirties and love hearing about her decision to become a parent. I love her beautiful writing and point of view. Not since Caroline left have I resonated with someone’s writing on the blog as closely as your own Joanna.

  56. Get the tattoo–just make sure to spell check it first!

    This is great, because I live in a tiny condo with my two kids (in DC, not NYC) and might have to start looking at the daybed option.

  57. This was such a wonderful read! Thank you for sharing Alyssa’s story. It seems like they have such a sweet and special relationship : ) I’m so happy to see such interesting and inspiring new contributors on the blog!

  58. What a beautiful writer. More personal essays, please!

  59. Wonderful. When mine was little, so long, long ago now, there was just a wall between the two beds. I said, if you need anything, just knock. Sometimes the knocks came. That was OK. I got up and resolved the nightmare, drink, whatever problem. Sometimes, I was told that just putting a hand on the wall was enough to know that mom was on the other side.
    At the same time, I would read bedtime stories and quite regularly fell asleep before the end. One day, I went in search of a certain kind of much-coveted tomato at the weekly market but I was rather late. All gone. You should have come earlier, the vendor scolded. I fell asleep with my kid! I explained. Another woman sympathized–sleeping with your kid is the best somnifere.

  60. Tawny says...

    I seriously adore everything about this post. Alyssa is lovely. I’m 32 and have said similar: if I haven’t met the right person by 35, I’ll have a baby on my own as well. And my family has beautifully supported that decision. Cheers, lovelies!

  61. Monica says...

    There are so many things to love about this post! I echo the comments about getting Alyssa to post more for Cup of Jo! I too have a baby Hazel, so her great taste even runs to naming babies. Finally, what brought me to comment was that this is perhaps the first time on any blog (worth its salt) that has featured a plastic toy in the pictures. While I’m all for lovely wooden toys and stylized photos, it is so nice to see someone who is ok with any type toy, as long as it makes the small person happy! I

  62. Loribeth says...

    Oh Cup of Jo, you’ve done it again. This is why y’all are my favorite corner on the internet!

  63. I love Alyssa’s story. What a beautiful little girl Hazel is. The RH daybed is gorgeous. We have a lot of RH furniture and the style and quality cannot be beat. Thanks for sharing.

    XOXO, Amy @ Jeans and a Tea
    http://www.jeansandatea.com

  64. Whew, I love Alyssa’s writing. :)

  65. Kate says...

    Oh yes. I like this very much, and I’m flashing back to some of her previous pieces over at NYMag that were excellent, too.

  66. Olivia says...

    I know the author said it worked out okay, but two adults in a twin sized bed has got to be rough, no?!

    Although suburban life is less exciting than the city, I am happy to have room to spread out at home!

    • Rachel says...

      That’s exactly what I was thinking….

  67. i’m a woman obsessed.

    we bought a new Leesa mattress recently, our old mattress hasn’t been picked up by bulk yet so we have it hanging out in the living room which makes for comfy lounging while we watch tv. was just thinking today if only couches had mattress level comfort… and this comes along and now i am making a very strong argument to my husband that this daybed needs to be purchased RIGHT NOW.

  68. This is such a lovely piece! Alyssa’s story reminds me of the incredible new podcast called Not By Accident. Have you heard it? It’s a beautiful show from documentary filmmaker Sophie Harper, who decided to become a single mom at age 38. It’s definitely worth a listen.

    • Andrea says...

      I’ll have to listen to this one, thanks! 34 and considering making the leap…

  69. Jessie says...

    This writing is truly beautiful. Loved this piece so so much (and I am a totally 25-year-old with no connect to single motherhood, but with a deep love for majestic prose)! Please feature more pieces from Alyssa!!!

  70. Glenda says...

    Love this post!

  71. This was truly lovely to read. I’m married with no kids, but still resonated a LOT. This! “What I realize now is that I was using the daybed as a crutch (SYMBOL?) for something else. ”

    We can do so many difficult things and breeze right through them. Then something like this comes up and we realize, “oh, that did affect me WAY more than I realized, but at the time it wasn’t possible to allow my full feelings to emerge. Now it’s safe and they’re coming out in this other way.” So healthy and cathartic! The key is to notice about yourself that it’s not actually the daybed (or the can opener or the skin blemish or whatever other minor thing), but the deeper experience you’re having that’s being brought up by the minor thing.

    Enough psychobabble! Wonderful piece – thank you for sharing, Alyssa and COJ team.

  72. I would love to read more from this author. Great piece.

    • d. says...

      Agreed. I wish she’d become a Cup Of Jo staffer.

    • Cindy says...

      I agree. Such a lovely piece of writing.

    • Mindy says...

      I love that she represents a segment of women so rarely portrayed, single moms by choice. It can feel lonely going through this journey with so few of us. Thank you!

  73. Amber says...

    I was raised by a single mom my whole life. I’m happy to see a single mom family on a mainstream lifestyle blog. Thanks, CoJ!

  74. Elizabeth R says...

    Beautiful story. Maybe you should write a memoir. I wish you all the best with your new love, your adorable baby, your mutual independence, and that comfy looking daybed

  75. So sweet! Love both her confidence and vulnerability. It’s all there, especially when babies are in the mix.

  76. Tyler says...

    Lovely.

  77. Carrie says...

    Her writing kind of sweeps you away. I Loved this, I love the day bed and I’m also really curious why you wouldn’t read Just Kids again.

    • Katherine says...

      Because there’s nothing quite like the thrill of discovery! Can’t recapture that feeling in a subsequent reading. ;)

    • Melissa says...

      I agree, inspiring piece. She said she would never read it for the first time again. I think we can assume she loved it but will never experience it being new to her again.

  78. Katherine says...

    I took something a bit different from this piece than other readers, most likely. Alyssa, I *just* went through an incredibly similar breakup with an Italian man (read your piece in NYMag…good lord can I identify with the obsessive cleaning, aversion to marriage, detachment, etc, etc.), so it’s really helpful to see that you picked up the pieces and are doing so well–and with a beautiful baby and daybed no less. :) Reading this really helps as I nurse my wounds. <3

  79. This is so lovely.

    Every change with my son makes me lose sleep for weeks. It is beautiful and excruciating this growing up thing.

  80. Thank you for featuring stories about single moms! More of these please, especially about decorating, as a room of one’s own isn’t something every mother can afford to give a kiddo shuttling back and forth between parents (if both are still in the picture). I know there are ways to successfully navigate transition and have your child feel welcome in whatever home they land.

  81. christina says...

    i cannot believe this article appeared today! we just moved out of a shared room situation with my 6 mo old daughter and now sleep in the dining room (new yorkers will understand this isn’t so unusually, gotta do what you gotta do in a 1 bedroom) people kept telling me she needs her own room but in the city it’s not very feasible. when we finally did i felt every feeling she describes in her article…also we are sleeping MUCH better. realizing your child needs “independence” is so bitter sweet!

  82. Stella says...

    As a single mother from day one I know what she’s talking about. I loved this piece! Thank you.

  83. Lindsay says...

    Beautifully written! I love Alyssa’s writing and was so excited to see her featured here. I am holding out hope she’ll write book about her adventure into single motherhood. Wishing her and sweet Hazel all the best…

  84. A says...

    Such a well written piece. I would love to hear about your gentle sleep training. My daughter is still in my bed at one year old. How can I persuade her the crib is a good idea?? Thanks for the article. x

  85. AF says...

    what a post! loved every word.

  86. Alice Quin says...

    Love this post. Thank you for featuring a strong, smart, loving single mom!

  87. Lena says...

    For some reason this made me ache inside a little bit. How wonderfully written and what a beautiful little family!

  88. What a beautiful story! So glad you each now have a little of your own independence.

  89. Mel says...

    Echoing Sasha above — What a beautiful story and woman! I felt a sense of connection, delight, and pride for Alyssa through the progression of her brave journey. Allowing oneself and one’s loved ones to breathe and grow can be such a heart-trending yet life-giving experience. Thank you for sharing this lovely piece.

  90. Marielle says...

    That dress! Where/who?? xoxo

    • Lexi Mainland says...

      There’s a link to the designer in the credits at the bottom of the post! xo

    • Erin says...

      What about the baby’s dress and undies?!!

  91. Kerry says...

    The writing is just great — I really enjoyed reading this, and seeing that happy, bright, little face. Well done, Mama, all around.

  92. Sasha says...

    What a beautiful story. It made me tear up a bit, at just how much decisions about our babies can weigh our hearts down. And about how we muddle through and figure it out.

    I’m a mom, nanny, birth doula…my single best piece of advice for any mom, do what works for you. And know it won’t always be what you thought would be right. Be brave, do it anyway.