We are programmed as children to associate summertime with nothingness. Lazy, carefree, amazing nothingness. But, then we grow up.
Personally, I have yet to retrain myself as an adult. It’s just so hard to feel motivated to live on a schedule, be productive or work from about May until September. And this summer has been especially challenging in that regard since I have been living on what is basically an extended vacation. I have been virtually chore-free, devoid of any house projects or maintenance, I never have to cook. And my days consist of trips to the beach or city or aquarium or or or. I mean, I just can’t work. Who wants to work while on vacation?
The thing is, as much as I love summer fun, I am a crazy person who also craves schedules and productivity and goal seeking. Yes, while having the time of my life, part of me is always waiting for that glorious moment when the air shifts to fall, and it’s time to shop for new pencils and planners and notebooks. Metaphorically speaking.
In the meantime, just like the end of any good vacation, I am sad to see this boarding school adventure end yet excited to get home and back to my life. It will still be summer, but this time next week, I’ll be unpacked and (hopefully) newly inspired and full of ideas. I will miss this perfect little spot (seriously, Andover, Mass is amazing for life with a kid), but I look forward to getting my blog on again. See you there!
So, this is the new site! Welcome! I’ve been working on this new home of mine for months now….slowly learning how to build a website from the ground up, reading all about widgets and plugins and themes, moving stuff over from the old blog and just figuring it all out. It’s a lot more complicated than it looks, I have found. Especially for someone whose M.O. in life is to create…..not be techy or learn how to write code. But, I’m here. And I’m so excited to be blogging on this new platform!
Please bear with me as I am still tinkering around with the layout and content (and god knows when I will learn how to actually design this thing). Given I’ve been trying to get this done for months now, I decided yesterday to just take the plunge and make it live. So, I apologize in advance if things are incomplete or imperfect, and please let me know if you are having any issues with the site!
Thank you for your continued support! I hope you stay and read a while! To subscribe, enter your email address on the right-hand side of the page.
I started a series over a month ago—Marriage and Baby: Not for the Weak. I was really excited about it, mostly because it pushed me as a writer. The series is personal and intimate—it covers topics I haven’t delved into in my writing before and a level of honesty that far surpasses my already TMI style. My decision to write about my struggles with anxiety, commitment, childhood trauma, the dark hours of my relationship with my husband, trying to conceive (which automatically means talking about sex), pregnancy, and childrearing makes sense to me. Yes, I feel exposed and anxious about putting it all out there for the world to react to. But, this is exactly what drives me as a person.
I am excited by and drawn towards the things that scare me most. I always have been. The place where those two emotions intersect (excitement and fear) is where life happens. That is the place that changes you, enriches your experience, lights you up, and propels you forward. That is the place where I am uncomfortable, but need to live.
And I am writer. I have been a writer since the day my most beloved High School English teacher, Mr. Diamond, kept me after class to tell me that he had been moved to tears by something I wrote and he began referring to me as a “writer.” He also confessed that he had been passing my essays around the teacher’s lounge, because he thought I had a message and a beauty that needed to be shared and he hoped that I’d understand why he did this. I wasn’t upset, I was honored. I was intrigued by my ability to affect someone outside myself. I had felt so powerless and unimportant in my life. Always. I felt like no one really knew me…my truth was unseen and unheard.
Writing was a solution—it was healing and empowering. And I loved it. So, I kept doing it. And I kept sharing. Sharing my work was always scary, especially for a shy, introverted girl like me. I tested the waters by sharing my essays with my father. He cried every time he read them. When I went off to college, I began to share my writing with my peers. From there, my passion grew and though I’ve tried, in numerous ways, to be something other than a writer (and photographer, because that began the very same year), I can only be who I am.
But, I get bored sometimes. And when I am bored it usually means that I need to dig deeper, I need to grow or I’ve lost my direction. Because to be a good writer you have to push yourself to a place that feels less than comfortable (at least I think so). Honesty has many layers, as I’ve discovered so intensely over the past few years. Every time I think I’m writing from a place of total honesty and exposure, there always seems to be another layer underneath that I hadn’t seen before.
So, I started this mini-series as a way to push myself and to share something even more personal than my usual repertoire. I turned the first post of the series out almost immediately upon hatching the idea in my brain. And I began writing the next post shortly thereafter. But. I’ve been holding it hostage for over a month now. The topic was conception, and surprisingly it was much harder to write about than I anticipated. I’ve rewritten that piece so many times that I’ve now lost track of how many versions I’ve gone through. The truth is, I’m entirely uncomfortable with the whole thing—the quality of what I’ve written, the story itself, the exposure. So, I’ve decided to just stop holding back and put it out there. That might sound crazy, but it is my way of remaining committed to myself, and honoring the passion and path I have been given. What other choice do I have? Personally, I cannot live a life of turning my back on myself. Not anymore, at least. So, I’m going to trek forward….
Come back Monday for the very overdue Marriage and Baby: Not for the Weak sequel! The topic of this next post turned out to be much meatier than I anticipated. So, I will be breaking up the story by posting a chunk of it every day next week. Get ready for TMI multiplied!
So, as you’ve probably noticed, my blog has a new name! I wanted it to better reflect my journey, and my writing, as both have evolved over the past year. As simple as the title is, it took a long time for me to decide on—many months, brainstorming lists, opinion poll taking. I’m happy with it now! It makes sense to me.
I’ve also been updating my pages, including my “about” page. And the pictures throughout the site. It just feels good to have everything rearranged and set up. It’s like I’ve carefully packed my bags, and dressed for the occasion and now I can head on my way. I am more certain than ever that my journey is under way, and my blog is my vehicle.
Anyway, here’s the updated info…
About Lola’s Child
Hi there! I’m Alexa, but most people know me as Lola! I’m a 32-year old writer, photographer, and
mama-to-be new mama, living in the Northern Berkshires of Western Massachusetts.
On the most basic level, this blog is about truth. I want to put an honest voice out there to give others something to relate to, or at the very least, something that inspires them to be confident in their own truth. I give you the real, inside
scoop poop on life as a mama. Just like life, sometimes my confessions will send you into a laughing fit, and sometimes you may just nod in tears. Either way, you can expect a whole lot of TMI.
The name Lola’s Child is meant to have double meaning (though that’s probably not very obvious) given my life is about two things right now: my actual child, sweet baby girl Emerson, and my brainchild (my writing and photography career).
Thanks for stopping by! I hope you stay and read a while! Feel free to comment or shoot me an email! You can subscribe by email (on the left-hand side of the blog) to receive alerts to new posts.
If you dig back into my archives, you will find that this blog used to be quite different. Though my blog has most definitely grown into something entirely new, I decided to leave all those years of writing intact here, because it is where I began.
A few links:
This is our life (ongoing series about the moments that seem to be the very definition of parenthood)
|I own this thanks to my thoughtful gal pal, Natalie!
I’ve been contemplating this blog for many months now. I went through a phase where I thought I might just shut it down. I’ve considered starting a whole new blog with a whole new URL. I’ve been staring at the wall trying to come up with a new name to better reflect the change in content. I’ve been wondering how or if I could transition away from the “Lola Rain” brand that I’ve created. So, here’s what I got: I will be staying on the Lola Rain train, but this blog will have a new name shortly. I wanted to mention this change a bit before it happens so people aren’t confused. At the same time, I’ll be giving my blog a once over and changing some of the layout and graphics. Things will look different, but it will be the same blog you are used to (if you’ve been reading it the past year or so). I’ll explain more as these changes start to happen. I’m excited, though, because I feel like streamlining everything will push me further in the direction my writing (and life/career) is already headed.
Thank you for all the kind feedback and encouragement I’ve received this past year! I take it all as a sign that I am on the right path. Your words have inspired me to dig a little deeper and share even more.
“I want to work in revelations, not just spin silly tales for money. I want to fish as deep down as possible into my own subconscious in the belief that once that far down, everyone will understand because we are the same that far down.”
Yesterday, I quickly shot some words out of my brain and onto my computer screen, and hit “publish” before I could second guess any of it. Those words were thoughts….feelings, really….that I’ve been having for some time. Some part of me felt that if I made that little confession to the world, the Universe would answer. And it did. In the form of a lovely message from a lovely person that grew up in the same hometown as me. I’ve heard from this lovely lady several times since I became pregnant, and have felt so appreciative each and every time. I’m not sure we ever spoke back in our school days, but now we have something that unites us, something that makes us feel perfectly comfortable making confessions to one another: motherhood. Ah, the sisterhood of mamahood. It’s very real, and so important. Long story short, I heard the message I needed to hear from the Universe through this wonderful mama: keep going.
So, here it is. I’m going to keep writing, and I’m going to continue to be real. Because, that’s how I roll. If I had a mission statement (for this blog), it would look something like this:
Struggle permeates life. Though the struggle makes us human, we so often attempt to evade its presence. We pretend, we keep it to ourselves, we sometimes believe that we make it easier for others to be around us by hiding it. So much of the world is a polished version of itself. How can we relate to a polished version of reality? There is a reason television has been taken over by reality shows, why we’ve become so obsessed with celebrity gossip, why we read blogs. We’re all in search of honesty, confessions, the imperfection that makes us all alike.
I want to put an honest voice out there. That is why I write. I want to give others something to relate to, or at the very least, something that inspires others to be comfortable with their own honest truth. Specifically, right now, I feel compelled to share the truth of my journey through motherhood (and previously, pregnancy and birth). I hope that my honesty frees you, inspires you, or simply entertains you.
Thank you to all my readers! And thank you to the others who sent me nice messages yesterday.
I’ve mentioned that one of the reasons I’ve been struggling to post lately is insecurity. Throughout my pregnancy and just after the birth, I felt good about this blog. I felt very inspired and was receiving a steady stream of positive feedback from readers, and felt like I was creating something. I’ve never been entirely sure what specifically I’m creating here, but it’s always felt like part of my path so I continue to write.
However, as the high of giving birth and having a new baby wore off, so did any sense of confidence in my writing. The truth is my confidence in a lot of things has been shaky for months. I’ve been hit by the much-expected-hoped-I’d-avoid-it identity crisis that so many mothers experience. Many days I find myself questioning my goals, my daily life, my outward appearance….basically, my entire existence. Nothing is spared. I have toyed with the idea of erasing my blog altogether on several occasions. But, I can’t. At least not today. For today, I am writing this confession instead of erasing years worth of writing. I guess we’ll see what tomorrow brings….
I have done a complete overhaul on my blog several times since the time I started it, and yet it appears it’s time to do so again. The first year or so, this blog was completely unfocused and I didn’t post with much consistency. I pulled my act together and started blogging daily the following year, but still without much of a theme. I eventually narrowed my focus and set up pages like the New Reader page to make my mission clear (somewhat). But, it seems my mission has changed.
The blogs that I personally read and love have a clear voice and a story. That is what I’ve been lacking. But, I felt a voice and story begin to emerge from me during my pregnancy and this blog has slowly become something I never intended or imagined it would. I’m hesitant to label it anything at this point, though some could say it’s a parenting blog. I just know that writing about my pregnancy allowed me to share on a deeper, more relatable level and the feedback I’ve gotten has been overwhelming. I’ve received numerous emails and comments, since my blog changed course, that confirm I am moving in the right direction.
I always said that having a child would somehow connect me to an opportunity in my personal life (i.e. career), but I had no idea what that looked like. I have been working on my photography business, little by little, off and on, for a few years now, and right now I feel most drawn to photographing pregnant women, babies/families, and possibly births. I’m so in awe of all those things, and can’t imagine anything more beautiful and meaningful so it makes sense that I would not only want to photograph it (as that is my artistic medium), but also write about it. We’ll see where this all leads…..
So, I will have to overhaul this blog yet again—it needs a new, pithy name (suggestions?), new banner, new tagline, etc. Now I just have to find the time to work on this with a small infant….oh….she just woke up. And she’s hungry. I’ll get around to all this work someday.
Thanks for all your support, dear readers! And thanks for reading!
When I started this blog I simply wanted a place to post some pictures and surface-level thoughts as I played around with my photography. After almost a year though, I had a more concrete plan and started posting every day. I had many reasons for this—it was a way to hold myself accountable, to feel committed to working on my photography/business/creative journey, it was a way to make sure I was always writing, it was an outlet, it was something I believed would help me stay on my path and arrive at whatever destination the Universe had in store for me. And I had clear-cut topics for this blog for quite a while. Then I got pregnant.
Sadly, I haven’t found myself very artistically inspired since I’ve been pregnant and that’s a fact that I really struggle with. But, that’s not to say I am not inspired. I feel inspired to write, to put my experience out there for what it’s worth. I tried to keep the pregnancy posts to a minimum at first, but it’s been the greatest source of writing material I’ve had in my life next to heartache (go figure). So I’ve been writing, and you’ve been reading. In fact, more and more people have flocked to this humble little blog since I began writing about pregnancy. So how could I stop? But, I often wonder where this is all going. I am still an artist above all, I still have goals and dreams for my life as an individual and I hope to get back to all that when it’s possible. But, my blog has slowly morphed into a motherhood/parenting blog, and I’d wager it will continue once my little bean arrives (the greatest source of inspiration imaginable). I have a feeling this will all make sense someday soon though…I have a feeling that becoming a mother is closely tied to the direction I am meant to travel career-wise. Stay tuned….