Why I Never Want My Daughter to be Famous…

little_girl_playing_dress_up_0071-0807-3112-2749_SMU
Growing up, I wanted to be a singer, Mariah Carey in particular. Granted, I have the worst singing voice ever (when I was younger it wasn’t so bad), I loved performing in front of family with my 80s microphone stand or just my hand (lip syncing Mili Vanilli style or my actual voice). Yes, I was the entertainer in my family.

After I became a teenager, I realized my voice was not as great as those on ‘Star Search’ (anyone under the age of 25 will need to Google this) and gave up that dream and my hopes of being a famous singer ended.

As a new mom, your views on life change quickly. You react as a ‘mom’ would, you go into crazy protective mode (I am starting to think this will never end), you hear stories about child deaths and becoming extremely angry, nauseous or utterly saddened (depending on the situation) more so than you did when you were single, you think in terms of how your actions will affect your child/children, your reaction time is superhuman, your motherly instincts (something I wasn’t sure really existed but do!) are spot on and you just become different. Not good or bad different, but different.

As I got older, I still thought about how nice it would be if I was famous. Personal chefs, shoppers, trainers, unlimited amounts of money, traveling, living in a mansion and all the other things that come along with this fantasy (because let’s face it, this is not at all the reality of being famous). Then, the world sort of shifted and becoming famous wasn’t just for actors/actresses and artists. Anyone could become famous. Thanks to the creation of the internet, avenues like YouTube offered upcoming artists the change to let the world here their voice and even end up on talk shows like Ellen (love her!). It also gave way to hilarious videos from pets to people which if successful would go ‘viral’ and become an internet sensation. These also became known as an individual’s ‘fifteen minutes of fame.’

Taken from the always reliable (ha!) Wikipedia, 15 minutes of fame is short-lived media publicity or celebrity of an individual or phenomenon. The expression is credited to Andy Warhol, who included the words “In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes” in the program for a 1968 exhibition of his work at the Moderna Museet in Stockholm, Sweden. I really love his quote, kind of scary but possibly true?

Reality shows like Jersey Shore and 16 & Pregnant gave new ways of becoming ‘famous’ by encouraging binge drinking and the ‘smoosh room’ as well as unwed teenagers having kids (don’t even get me started on children having children!). You could become famous through a sex tape (Kim Kardashian), being on a reality show (Toddlers & Tiara’s spinoff show ‘Honey Boo Boo’), an Instagram photo (Alex from Target) or any other social media for that matter.

Towards my later 20’s, I realized I never want to be famous. I never want my life exposed and exploited the way so many celebrities’ lives are these days. Can you image going through a difficult break up or a divorce publicly? Or having paparazzi waiting outside your house to take pictures of you or your children? Or never being able to do everyday things like grocery shopping without having to be somewhat presentable or someone stopping you? No way! You couldn’t pay me to be famous (well, maybe for a day).

So as I continue my role as a new mom I have come to the realization that I never want my daughter to be famous. I never want her to think that certain types of fame are ‘okay’. Sure, if she’s blessed with a talent to act or sing, I will never hold her back, but I also will not allow for her to get sucked into the chaotic world that celebrities live in. Yes, being famous always had its bad connotations (sex, drugs and rock & roll or the use of drugs and drinking at all ages, i.e. Drew Barrymore at the age of 9), but I think the new ways of becoming famous have made way for even more meltdowns and misguided individuals.

Life is what you make of it, and for now, I’m making mine with a family that will grow up in the image and likeness of God…and that’s what I can be famous for ;). As for my daughter, she’ll always be famous in my eyes.

Do I Really Want a Mini Me?


After the ultrasound where we saw our little one for the first time and the excitement around announcing our pregnancy, I knew two things indefinitely: one, I wanted a healthy baby and two, I wanted a girl. I so very desperately wanted a girl! Why? Well, for starters, I’m a girl so I know how we work, I have a sister and a mom and since I grew up without any brothers, I felt being a first time mom would most easily be accommodated with pink cap instead of a blue. Second, I wanted a mini me. Yes, I envisioned this little peanut (my daydreaming was more of her around the age of 2) as we walked hand-in-hand having dark hair and cute bangs like her momma and wearing a casual but super trendy baby Gap outfit semi-coordinated with what I’m wearing (no, I was not envisioning matching outfits although leggings and jean jackets would be pretty cute!!!). We’d be laughing and maybe eating ice cream and the sky would be a perfect blue with birds chirping and maybe we’d even start to skip! Yes, completely silly but when I daydream it’s always very unrealistic (or never how it really ends up happening!).

So after 27 dreadful hours of labor and the doctor said to my husband and I “it’s a girl”, I was beyond thrilled. I had this feeling towards the end of my pregnancy it was a ‘she’ but the confirmation just put me over the moon…AND, she had a ton of dark hair (now we’re kind of just working with a fro-hawk and some patches of hair!). My dream had come true…Emma Grace was here!

I’m told by all she looks just like her daddy and I agree, she definitely doesn’t have my face except maybe her big eyes and her lips, but her eye color, nose and slightly larger head is all her dad! However her personality? Oh man, is she ever a mini me! Her fake yawn (something I was told by my mom and sister I would do when I don”t want to talk about something! Ironically my husband actually does it too so this one doesn’t really count) that she does when she’s bored with someone talking to her, her hilarious faces, her kicking soccer star legs and already incredible leg strength (arms not so much, just like mom!), her overall happy demeanor and constant smiling, completely hyperactive (totally am!) and of course, her regimented schedule.

Ah yes, the schedule baby. I have created a not-a-minute-late-or-I-will-scream-because-I-know-my-schedule child. At first, I was very proud of this accomplishment. She eats, plays for a bit then takes a nap and that continues throughout the day (some naps longer than others, some skipped) until the evening when she has her night time bath then feed and bed for 12 hours. Yes, my child sleeps for 12 hours (but that does NOT mean I do!). She is definitely a mover when she sleeps and since her bassinet is right next to me, when she’s moving a ton and making noise, I am up (my husband says she sleeps like me!). So from her first feeding in the morning she will continue to eat every three hours until bed. However, after her bath and pajamas, she knows it’s time to eat. She could have just ate at 5:30PM and it’s now 7:30PM but she will scream for her bottle as if she hasn’t eaten all day. She’s not that hungry, SHE’S ON A SCHEDULE!

So, did I create a monster? Did I curse myself because I, myself, am a crazy scheduled individual? I’m not sure. I worry as I think most parents do that our children will inherit the bad habits we have which is why we try to ensure they won’t make the mistakes we did that can result in  some ‘tough love’ and being ‘overly involved’ (I feel this personally is better than uninvolved). Yet, no matter how controlling we try to be, their lives will take their courses because ultimately it’s not up to us, it’s up to Him. Yet I can’t help but wonder, will she be a mini me? Do I really want a mini me? We all have our flaws and I’m the first to admit I have my share of issues, but having another me around…hmm…I think my husband would politely say ‘One is enough.’ I, without a doubt, want her to be a happy child. My mom said I was always happy, smiling and laughing. I wish that for her. She is that way now so I hope it continues! She’s kind of a pistol when she wants things and my mom said I wasn’t as much of a handful so I guess I have no choice there! But I think when it comes down to it, I don’t want a mini me. While I had imagined a little pint size version of me carrying her baby Coach purse and following me around, I don’t think….who am I kidding I TOTALLY WANT THAT!

Juuust kidding! In the end, I want her to be Emma. I want my husband and I to raise her in our Catholic family and instill the Catholic values that will help shape who she becomes. I want to be the best parent I can be which isn’t turning her into me. It’s allowing her to be who she is and one day making her own decisions. It’s allowing her to grow into her own and being there to help guide her, but not control her. She will always have traits of me and my husband because we’re her parents, but she is never going to be exactly like one of us. So as she continues on her schedule and continues to be happy on it (despite the moments of crying before a bottle), I will never complain. Children are a blessing and although at times she drives me nuts and I want to pull my hair out some days, I just think about that first moment I saw her…all the love that rushed over me and how from that day forward, I would never again be the same. I got my baby girl and for now, that’s all I need.

A Mother’s Love


A Mother’s Love

There is no greater gift,
Than that of a mother’s love.
A love that is so immeasurable,
No words can truly speak of.

The gentle touch she knows,
With children cradled in her arms.
The guidance that she gives,
Keeping them away from harm.

She can hold it all together,
When the world is falling apart.
She can mend the littlest of scratches,
And even soothe the broken heart.

She will never stand in judgment,
Only expressions of concern.
Her love is unconditional,
and yet, she expects nothing in return.

There is no greater gift,
Than that of a mother’s love.
Her protection is unwavering,
And inner strength unheard of.

She will never give up hope,
Even when all hope seems to be lost.
She would sacrifice all of herself,
Guarding loved ones at any cost.

With her voice, a smile or a hug,
She can make problems disappear.
The most patient of all listeners,
Her love is always near.

She is the one we turn to,
The one we all call by name.
She is ‘mother’, ‘mom’, ‘mommy’, ‘ma ma’,
But no one mother is the same.

A woman of true grace,
A model for all to see,
There is no love like a mother’s love,
So thank you mom for loving me.

Copyright © 2014 Renee Dzieciolowski, All Rights Reserved.

I wrote this poem for three reasons: my mom, my daughter and myself.

For my mom: I was blessed with an amazing mom and I can truly say she is an unbelievable woman. All my life she has sacrificed so much of her life, herself, her own happiness and selflessly done everything and anything for her children. She is the most incredible role model and I admire her so much. I would not be the person I am today without her (I love you mom!).

For my daughter: I hope one day my daughter will read this and understand, whether it’s when she is a teenager or maybe even married and having a child of her own, how much I love her. My love for her is beyond measure. I know there will be times where she doesn’t ‘think’ I love her or times where maybe she doesn’t love me, but I hope that one day she and I will have the relationship that I have with my own mom. I hope that one day she will feel the same way about me.

For myself: Becoming a mother has completely changed me. It’s not just changed my outlook on life but truly how I live it. I am living my life to be an example to her. I want to be someone she looks up to and admires. I want to be a mother that protects and loves her no matter what, a mother that puts aside being a ‘friend’ for being a ‘parent’ (even if that means she doesn’t like me for it), a mother that gives her all of my love all the time…and finally, a mother that has shown her how to be a true woman of faith the way my mother has shown me.

I am so lucky to have a mother’s love and to be able to give a mother’s love. I wish all of you the same whether your mothers are here or in spirit, whether you are mothers of children or animals, stepmothers, grandmothers, Godmothers, aunts…all mothers! I hope that in some way or another you can experience some form of a mother’s love (remember that Mother Mary is a mother to all!).

To My Daughter…

il_340x270.110896787
I love you. I love you more than words can ever explain. I love watching you grow. I love the way you know that I’m your mom, the way you smile at me and the way you snuggle with me. I love the way you get excited and kick your legs. I love it when I’m holding you and you squeeze me. I love your little face and your little toes. I love everything about you.

You are growing…and you are growing fast. It seems like just yesterday you were born and yet it already feels so far away. You will only continue to grow even in moments when I wish time would just stand still. A part of me never wants you to grow up. A part of me just wants to keep you as my tiny baby. A part of me will never forget these times and a part of me someday will really miss them. But you will always be my little girl, even when you’re no longer little.

I miss you on the days I’m not home with you. I can’t wait to see you. I think about what you’ll be like when you grow up, how beautiful you’ll always be in my eyes and the things you’ll do. I sometimes worry about raising you. Am I making the right decisions? Am I doing the right things? Being a mom is tough, one day you’ll understand it, and then you’ll know as I now know when my mother said it to me.

I want to tell you so much. I want to share the world with you. But I want to shelter you. I want to keep you away from harm and evil. I never want anyone to hurt you. I never want you to feel pain. I know this isn’t possible. I know this because it’s part of life…and sometimes life isn’t fair. Sometimes people hurt us and sometimes we hurt ourselves. Life is full of emotions. We feel a lot things. We feel love, joy, happiness, accomplishment and success but we also feel pain, loss, heartbreak, sickness and sadness. There is no limit to what we can or will feel.

At some point, you will feel angry at me, and maybe even resentful. You will tell me that I’m unfair. You will fight with me. You won’t like me. While I can never be fully prepared for this, I will do my best. I know when it will be coming. I know because I was once there. I did these things to my mom. I fought her because she was a good mom…in fact, she was and is the best mom. She had rules and consequences. She cared so much although I couldn’t see it at the time. She never gave up on me.

I will never give up on you. I will never stop being there for you, even when you don’t want me to be. This is my promise to you. I will do my best to be your guide through life. I will raise you hoping that one day when I’m not around (temporarily or permanently) you’ll make the right decisions, the smart decisions and the morally led decisions. I hope you will make these decisions even if everyone one else isn’t and even if it causes others to be mean to you. It’s never easy to go against the majority, but I hope you will be guided by the values I instilled upon you. I will make sure your faith is important to you. God will be your guide through life. You may not always like the answers to your prayers, but one day you’ll understand why things worked out the way they did.

My love for you is unconditional and knows no bounds. I cannot say what the future holds but I know that you will do great things. One day you will go off to college and exude your independence. You will begin figuring out what you want to do with the rest of your life. You will grow into a mature woman. You will be amazing, I just know it. I will always be proud of you, even at times when your feet aren’t firmly planted on the ground. You will make mistakes, and that’s okay. It will never change how I feel about you. I will give you advice when you ask for it, and sometimes when you don’t. I will never stop worrying about you. Never.

You will find a man that treats you the way you deserve to be treated. It may take you a while to find him, but don’t lose hope. I waited 29 years for your father and he was worth the wait…so worth it. I pray that you will find the love I have with him. We will do our best to set the right example for you. Then one day, you will get married. You will leave home permanently. I will have to let you go. I will know that you are safe and happy. You will have a new home but you will always be welcome to where you started. I will always be here for you.

God willing, you have children. Maybe one will be a little girl. You will love her beyond measure and you will truly understand the things I will have said to you all of your life. And hopefully I was a good mom to you so that you can be that same mom but better. We always hope for the best with our children and that I hope for you. And one day when I’m gone, my wish is that you’ll always know a piece of me lives inside of you, deep with your soul. This piece of me that will forever love you because you have made me whole.

Love always,
Your mom

Loss.

il_570xN.494415203_db7x
Loss. We all go through it. There are a variety of ways in which we lose. We lose those we love whether by death, the end of a relationship or a friendship. We lose out on promotions or we lose our jobs. We lose an important game we’re playing in or watching our favorite teams play. In moments of stress and frustration, we can lose our patience and even our sanity. In moments of sadness, we can lose our strength. In moments of uncertainty, we can lose trust. And in moments of disappointment and despair, we can lose our faith.

I believe that loss is one of the hardest things we go through as individuals. I reflect upon this because as I have a daughter now my biggest fear is losing her. I realize that is not my choice, that is up to God, but I cannot imagine that kind of pain. I know others that have lost children in pregnancy, at birth, as children and even as adults. One of my best friends was diagnosed with cancer and passed away when we were 21 years old. I cannot begin to comprehend the loss his parents and family felt. The loss of child is something no parent should go through, but I believe God has a greater purpose for these very special individuals. However, that doesn’t ease the pain. While I feel that time does heal all wounds, there are still the scars that live as reminders of the hurt we once and maybe even still endure.

I think about losing my parents and I immediately start to cry. I can’t imagine when that day comes and I no longer have them to talk to, go to advice for, share in special milestones and moments with and just that constant and unconditional love our parents give us. My husband lost his father when he was 17 years old and it breaks my heart how much he misses him. I know many people that have experienced the loss of a parent and I just hope that you can continue to find the strength to know they are in the best place they can be and although they are not physically here, their presence lives on in your hearts and in many of the things you do. We not only inherit our parents genes but also many of their behaviors and mannerisms that I believe can be a source of comfort when the pains of missing them become stronger during certain times. I cannot speak personally on this, but I know when that day comes I will need my faith more than anything to get through it.

I have lost friends over the years, some by my choice and others by theirs. It hurts. It’s very hard to watch people change and see those friendships diminish. Some just fade as your lives go in different directions and you grow apart while others end bitterly. I miss some of the friendships I no longer have but I believe people come and go in our lives for a reason and those that stay are meant to. I have lost relationships but those were for the best, however, at the time it seemed like the end of the world. For anyone not married or not with the person they will spend the rest of their lives with, all I can say is that when you find the one you are meant to be with, that relationship will stick through good times and bad. And when they don’t and you so desperately wanted it to, try to remember that in the long run, you will be better off (I know I am!).

Loss scares me but I know that whatever is supposed to happen in my life will happen and I just need to accept that. It’s never easy but I believe that God doesn’t give us more than we can handle. Yes, that seems silly to say because there are times where I personally felt like my life was unbearable, but that is when I found Him and trusted the most. Even if you aren’t religious, sometimes I think things happen so that you find a relationship with God, but maybe that’s just me! I know this post isn’t on the happy side, but I hope it helps you reflect on your own losses and accept that all things happen for a reason and to keep your head up!