Illustration by Emily Taylor Illustrations

In yoga class, of all places, I'm having a hard time feeling present. For starters, I've worn the wrong clothes. I've gained a few pounds (all right, 10), so my V-neck T-shirt and sports bra are too tight. There is a very real possibility that one or both breasts could burst forth during downward-facing dog.

But my thoughts are mostly on my 16-year-old daughter, who is here on the mat beside mine. This solo time with her is rare. She has drifted so far into her sports and art and friends lately that I hardly see her any more.

I know this is as it should be. Still, it seems as if only moments have passed since she was a baby and we we're spending our afternoons not in exercise class, but in the park, her stroller laden with toys, books, sippy cups and the little treasure she collected: pinecone, shiny stones and sticks caked with goo that I very much hoped was mud. I'd spread a blanket on the grass, and we would swat at dandelion fluff floating by. In those days, our intertwined future seemed infinite.

Now that same little girl meditates beside me - an athletic, lovely young woman with lithe legs pretzeled, hands resting on her knees, palms facing up. I watch her shamelessly. I can't help it. When she was little, I used to father her chestnut wisps into miniature butterfly clips, Now she wears her hair in a long ponytail that winds down her back. She rises to her feet, and the arms I swaddled 16 years ago - arms now longer and more muscular than mine - stretch toward the ceiling. How could this magnificent being rising on such strong limbs have anything to do with my fragile infant, or with me? I miss my newborn, my toddler, my preteen, all somewhere inside this flexible masterpiece. My heart swells with loss and pride.

Class comes to a close, and we're told to lie on our backs, hands at our sides. Ninety minutes have sailed by, but all I can remember are flashes: the feeling of my weird little toe pressing stubbornly against the mat: balancing in an awkward downward-facing dog, trying to keep my cleavage under wraps; my daughter posing like an elegant stork.

As with class, my memory of her is defined by such flashes. I picture her nestling in my lap as an infant, pointing at an image of the moon in a book and saying "Moo," a preview of the independent voice insider her itching to get out. There she is again, at 8 months, gripping the coffee table, face flaming red, her tiny jaw set with determination. She pulls up all her weight and stands, grinning as if to say, "I can do it myself, Mom, but I am glad you are here."

As the images flit through my mind, I feel a familiar pang. How many times have I wished I could stop the clock?

She looks at me now. "That was nice," she says, smiling, yoga-buzzed and radiant. Her gray-blue eyes connect with mine.

My girl, I think.

I capture the moment and hold it.

Jill Margaret Shulman is a mother and writer in Amherst, MA.

Let me start off by saying that my love for breastfeeding certainly did not come from my own personal experience with it. When I had my son a little over 4 years ago I did not have far as much knowledge for breastfeeding and many other parenting related things that I have now. I hadn't even created my support page, “Breastfeeding Mama Talk” until about 2 years in to motherhood.

How My Struggles With Breastfeeding Lead To my Activism

At first I hadn't even really planned to breastfeed, I didn't know what the point of it was. I figured it would just be easier to formula feed and I didn't have confidence that I would or could even make milk. Fortunately, in order to be qualified for WIC they make you attend classes and they will not provide formula for the first 30 days after you have your baby because their hope is that you choose to breastfeed. Well it just so happened they had one of the classes on the benefits of breastfeeding. Once I learned the comparison between formula and breastmilk and how much more benefits breastmilk had, I thought, “How could I not at least try to breastfeed?” because I wanted to give my baby the best possible start in life.

Please read the rest of the articles here:

When it's time to switch shifts…

"I love this photo my friend captured of me breastfeeding my daughter Corgan. I never knew how much I would truly enjoy this experience. It is so empowering and beautiful. I feed my child with my body! It's crazy! It's been 15 months and we're still going strong. Yes, there are days when it's frustrating and in the beginning it is a learning process but it is sooo worth it." - Momma Amanda

Even those who have it all together on the outside need a little reassurance on the inside ;)

"I love breastfeeding. I love the fact that my body can provide nourishment for my child, and I love the way it connects us. I feel very lucky that

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#mindyourowntits ….totally making that a thing! LMAO

"I don't even know how it happened. My mom used to be the only Secret Agent Mom I knew. She's still got it, but now...I'm finding the missing *fill in the blank*, I'm getting my son to school on time, I'm magicking up ways to get the skinny bugger to eat. I'm a single mom, but don't misunderstand...I'm not alone in this. My parents are my village. My village of superheroes. See, I need the support, the help and the housing. My anxiety disorder and depression get the best of me quite often. That's when Grandma and Grandpa swoop in to rescue me. I'm extremely competent. I'm a fantastic mommy. But sometimes, I'm no more than an overgrown child. I can blame it on my ex-husband's abuse. I can blame it on childhood bullies. I can blame it on the phase of the moon. But it boils down to periods of "Damn, bitch could work for the NSA." to ones of "Who thought it would be ok to give this bumbling twit a child?" Add in the kiddo's "special needs" factor (I prefer the term "high functioning sociopath") and stand back to watch the fireworks! I think I'm doing better than anyone expected me to do. Maybe I worry too much. Maybe I over analyze every speck of my son's behavior. But you know what? I'm finding the missing chargers. I'm pulling the missing angry birds shirt out of thin air to avoid a meltdown. I'm making sure my baby never knows just how hard everyday life is for Mommy. And that...that right there, is the most Secret Agent Mom job of all." - R. Copperfield

…at least WebMD didn't say "Go to the hospital immediately!"…although I might have a better chance at getting a good night's sleep there!
Trigger warning: get your tissues ready!

If you have 10 minutes to spare in your day and want to hear an incredibly sweet and heartwarming story about a 5 year old boy named Miles Scott who's Make-A-Wish wish was to be Batman's sidekick for a day, this video is for you.

A little back story: Miles was diagnosed with Leukemia at 18 months old. With the title of "Cancer Survivor" under his belt, he was granted a wish from Make-A-Wish. His one wish? To be "Batkid", Batman's sidekick who would mentor the 5 year old in crime fighting.

Once the wish was spoken aloud, tens of thousands of volunteers set out to create the most elaborate wish granting adventure.

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