A Recalcitrant Wife and Mother Tells All

Two Posts That Almost Never Were

Hey, remember that post from a couple of weeks ago about my bathing suit shenanigans?



Would you believe that post almost never saw the light of day?

It’s true.

I was dangerously close to deleting that sucker before I ever published it. But before I can tell you that story, you first need to know about a new website I’m involved in called Girl Body Pride: just the way we are.

Last June, my (then) Twitter friend Robin O’Bryant (who I’ve since gotten to know in person and now consider one of my IRL friends, and whose book Ketchup Is a Vegetable I liked SO much that I wrote my first ever Amazon Review) introduced me to one of her online friends, Pauline Campos.

Well, Pauline and I hit it off right away on the Twitter…

At the time, I had no clue what a BFD Pauline Campos was.

But she is.

And she’s pretty smart too.

Because girlfriend was able to quickly recognize that I am one enchilada short of a combo platter and two weeks later she invited me to be a contributing writer at her new website.

(For those of you just starting your own blogs, here’s a tip: HOT MESS = PAGEVIEWS.)

Anyhooo, I jumped at the chance to contribute to Girl Body Pride because I have very strong opinions about raising my feisty daughter to be more mentally healthy than I am.

Except, then I saw the kinds of other writers Pauline was attracting to her site and I became VERY intimidated. People like Elan Morgan (aka Schmutzie), Julia Roberts, Lissa Rankin, and Kim Tracy Prince among others. {OMG} These are smart women, successful entrepreneurs, real writers. {GULP!}

The more time that went by, the less comfortable I felt being listed among their ranks. 

True confession? I was *this close* to emailing Pauline to say I was too busy with my new job as the Editor in Chief at In The Powder Room to do any pro bono work right now.

And then I wrote that post about pranking my kids at the beach and almost deleted it because of my nearly paralyzing fear of putting photos of myself in a bathing suit on the Internet.

That fear? That was my cue that maybe what I was feeling was worthy of sharing with others.

Maybe bringing that fear into the light would strip it of its power and help others along the way.

So I wrote this for Girl Body Pride.

And then I almost deleted that one too.

How dare I submit something so shallow about myself? By being a contributing writer to a blog like that, aren’t I supposed to be a leader in helping women to be more accepting of ourselves right now, just the way we are? (#self-esteem-fail)

I was absolutely certain Pauline would reject the post and tell me it wasn’t really the message she was trying to convey at Girl Body Pride. I braced myself that she would probably encourage me to apply for a position at Dumbass Body Shame instead.

But she didn’t. And neither did the thousands of people who have read the post and shared it on Facebook.

And now, those two posts that almost never were have become my two most popular and significant posts yet.

The irony!

So what am I taking from this experience?

1.) I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Twitter is awesome. It’s a great way to connect to new friends and opportunities.

2.) Self-doubt usually indicates that we are onto something important! When we doubt ourselves, we should listen to other people who are more objective and see the greatness that we aren’t seeing. (Elan Morgan gives an incredible TED talk about conquering self-doubt. If this is an issue for you, I highly recommend you watch this.)

3.) Feel the fears and put ourselves out there anyway. (“No pain, no gain.”) The reward might greatly outweigh the risk.

4.) We are our own worst enemies and need to get better at seeing ourselves the way our loved ones see us.

5.) Never underestimate the comedic power of a bathing suit on the head.

Here’s that link again. Go. Read. If it resonates with you, please respond and share.

With love and gratitude,


  1. Kristin @ What She Said

    I’ve found that it’s usually the posts I fear publishing the most that wind up having the most impact on people. I almost didn’t publish “The Road to One and Done.” And, well… now it’s my most popular post ever with over 5,000 page views. Go figure.

    And now I’m off to read this amazing post of yours at Girl Body Pride! 🙂

  2. Sue at Wub Boo Mummy

    I absolutely loved both of these almost-deleted posts. We all have body image issues, so having someone we respect saying that they do too makes us feel better about ourselves in a roundabout way.
    BTW in that photo I’m so taken with how happy you both look that I didn’t actually notice your body, but on closer inspection I can tell you that you have nothing to worry about.

  3. L. Hewitt

    I was so overcome I could not even comment on GBP! Still don’t know what to say – Your mean girls are idiot bitches and are forevermore banished from the Vaginiverse. If they come back we will beat the shit out of them. M’kay? Muah. Now you have me feeling all inspired and shit.

  4. Jef

    Marianne Williamson once said that if you feel you have something to say, there’s probably someone who needs to hear it.

    I try to remember that, but I’ve had a few blog posts that I almost didn’t publish. I think it has something to do with the fact that when I was a child, my parents were always terrified whenever I opened my mouth. I thought that veins in everyone else’s parents necks bulged out whenever they talked, too.

    Speak your truth and wear a swimsuit while you’re doing it!

  5. Kim at Let Me Start By Saying

    Hot Mess = Pageviews is sooooo spot-on, lol!

    I’m so happy that you’re getting the attention and the love you deserve. xo

  6. Jana (@jana0926)

    I find the posts I’m unsure about and that I almost delete, are my best ones. Also the ones that only take about 5 minutes to write (ie: my VOTY post).

    I’m proud of/for you. Good things are happening. Keep going.

  7. Mary Anne

    Thanks for giving me the courage to get my mojo back. I’m 52 and still worry when my 80 year old dad says-‘you really shouldn’t make fun of yourself on the Internet you need to stop, honey’. Ok really??? I’ve never been personally happier or had more page views than when I write about my crap. You rock!

  8. Leslie

    FTR all I thought upon reading that post was how beautiful your daughter is and how she looks so much like you.

  9. pauline m. campos (@aspiringmama)

    Dear Hot Mess,

    I want to thank you for making me teary. There are many reasons for this and those reasons happen to include the selling of my five year-old’s jogging stroller today, the fact that Murphy is probably going to laugh his ass off when I turn up pregnant tomorrow, the fact that you think I’m a BFD, and how adorable it is that while you’re all I AM NOT WORTHY I am still trying to figure out how the FUCK all of you dynamos decided I was worth your time. You wrote exactly what I want to convey at GBP. I don’t want perfection. I don’t want easy answers. I don’t want readers to be turned away because they think they don’t belong in a place where all the writers have our shit together.
    Because we don’t.
    We are broken. We have good days. We have bad ones, too. And we are made of awesome because we keep trying.
    I love you and your words and your tendency to blog what most save for the therapist. Because I do exactly the same thing.


    The Other Hot Mess

  10. tracy@sellabitmum

    I love this and am so glad you published it. xoxo

  11. Rebecca

    Dear hot mess,
    You know I love you. I think you are brave and hilarious and like a Lucy, Kristen Wiig, Irma Bombeck sandwich. I love your antics.
    Please always click that publish button and not the delete button. For all of us.
    Oh, and now I will be stalking/loving on Pauline!

  12. Nisha

    Literally have tears running down my face after reading your Girl Body Pride post. We all have those demons in our head telling us that we arent good enough. I’m so glad you posted those pictures. It is a pure, sweet, raw moment between you and your Mini Me. I didn’t look at your arms, I looked at your big laughing smile and the love and simple “my mom rocks” look your daughter has across her face. Beautiful, just beautiful.

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