NETHERLANDS:  Milestones


130812811_5175751024_zI remember the day I gave birth to my firstborn very well.

After a long exhausting delivery, a baby boy was placed in my arms.

I remember feeling overwhelmed, I remember shaking from exhaustion.

But my fatigue and pain faded to the background, the moment I held him for the first time.

It wasn’t just a child that was born that day, a mother was also born and a love beyond comprehension.

Something in my mind and spirit opened up and I never saw the world the same way again.
From that moment on, I wept, whenever I saw the news.

With every casualty I realized that that was someone’s baby, someone’s child.

The irony is, that at the same time that an alertness and a desire to keep my baby close was awakened in me, a will and force to stand on his own was stirred up in him.

Yes, I had brought this little boy into the world, but he wasn’t mine. Yes, mine to hold, but for a short amount of time. He was born to walk his own course and to be his own person.

To emphasize this the cord  binding us together was cut.
And thus started our walk together. His, a walk of learning to take his own steps and mine, a walk of loosening grip by grip.

“Hold my hand as you cross the street.”

“You get back here, young man!”

“Yes, you can walk ahead in front of me as long as I can see you”

“You may ride your bike, but you have to stay on the curb.”
I held him, carried him, I cheered him on.

I held his hand and accompanied him, I sometimes gave him a little push when he lacked confidence.
And on many, many occasions I held him back.

“No, don’t touch that, that’s hot.”

“No, you can’t watch that, you’re too young.”

“No, you can’t go there, that’s too far.”
And now I have to let him go beyond my grasp, beyond my sight.

A part of my job is done and my role is changing.

I can no longer hold him back.

I have to let him go yet a little further.
The other day I accidentally grabbed his hand as we were crossing the street. He quickly pulled his hand away and gave me a look fit for crazy people.

My mistake, I thought, for one moment I mistook you for the little boy you once were.

My little boy is going to high school.

Can someone please hold me now?
Do you have moments that you have trouble letting your child or children go?

This is an original post for World Moms Blog by Mirjam of the Netherlands. Mirjam also blogs at Apples and Roses.

Photo credit: kwanie. This picture has a creative commons attribution license.


Mirjam was born in warm, sunny Surinam, but raised in the cold, rainy Netherlands. She´s the mom of three rambunctious beauties and has been married for over two decades to the love of her life. Every day she´s challenged by combining the best and worst of two cultures at home. She used to be an elementary school teacher but is now a stay at home Mom. In her free time she loves to pick up her photo camera. Mirjam has had a life long battle with depression and is not afraid to talk about it. She enjoys being a blogger, an amateur photographer, and loves being creative in many ways. But most of all she loves live and laughter, even though sometimes she is the joke herself. You can find Mirjam (sporadically) at her blog Apples and Roses where she blogs about her battle with depression and finding beauty in the simplest of things. You can also find Mirjam on Twitter and Instagram.

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A Birthday Wish for Every Child: a Shot@Life

A Birthday Wish for Every Child: a Shot@Life

For the past two years, World Moms Blog and many of our global contributors have been deeply engaged with and committed to the mission of  the UN Foundation’s Shot@Life campaign.

In recognition of  World Immunization Week and in celebration of the official launch of the Shot@Life campaign a year ago today, World Moms Blog is proud to introduce you to global Champion, Courtney Diesel O’Donnell. 

Courtney-ODonenell2World Moms Blog: Where do you live and are you from there?

Courtney O’Donnell: I live in Berlin, Germany. I moved to Berlin a little over a year ago with my family. My husband is originally from Germany, but it’s my first time living here. Berlin is a fascinating city – full of history, remembrance and rebuilding.  Today, in addition to government and other industry there is also a thriving art culture here.
Are you a mom?
Yes, I am a mom of two boys, ages 4 and 2.
What did you do before becoming a mom? Do you still do that?
I have worked for many years in the communications field – for political candidates, non-profit groups, and also corporations.  I still work in this capacity as a consultant to various organizations.
How did you learn about Shot@Life?
I became aware of Shot@Life through social media and a friend who began working with the UN Foundation.
Why did you become a Shot@Life Champion? (more…)

World Moms Blog

World Moms Blog is an award winning website which writes from over 30 countries on the topics of motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. Over 70 international contributors share their stories from around the globe, bonded by the common thread of motherhood and wanting a better world for their children. World Moms Blog was listed by Forbes Woman as one of the "Best 100 Websites for Women 2012 & 2013" and also called a "must read" by the NY Times Motherlode in 2013. Our Senior Editor in India, Purnima Ramakrishnan, was awarded the BlogHer International Activist Award in 2013.

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INDONESIA: The Blessing of Individuality

DSC_9290I have been blessed with two sons. My oldest is almost three years old and my baby just turned one. My pregnancies went as expected, bloating, swelling, nausea and horrible morning sickness, you know, the usual. However, the first breaths of life of each of my boys have been completely different.

Evan, my oldest came out of the womb kicking and screaming. Two nurses had to hold him down in order to be able to aspirate his nose. He was loud and restless from the first second, and he still is.

Joshua, my baby, came out with the calmest demeanor and the wisest look I’ve seen on a baby’s face. From his first minutes of life he seemed to be taking everything in and seemed at peace with his new environment.

When Josh was born, I thought to myself, “I’ve made it.” I already have a toddler and I know exactly what to do. I thought that all the things that worked with Evan would immediately work with Josh and that the things Evan enjoyed, Josh would, too.

Boy, was I wrong. (more…)

Ana Gaby

Ana Gaby is a Mexican by birth and soul, American by heart and passport and Indonesian by Residence Permit. After living, studying and working overseas, she met the love of her life and endeavored in the adventure of a lifetime: country-hopping every three years for her husband’s job. When she's not chasing her two little boys around she volunteers at several associations doing charity work in Indonesia and documents their adventures and misadventures in South East Asia at Stumble Abroad.

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Help Name This WMB Saturday Column!

It’s almost 10:30pm.  The kids are asleep.  My husband is out playing cards.  And, I should be in bed because the baby will be up in the night to feed, I’m sooo running on empty in the sleep department, and I’ve been trying to get myself to a Saturday morning 8am yoga class for two months now. (I haven’t made it there yet!)

But, I’m up blogging.

If you’re reading this, perhaps, you can relate.  What is it about us “mommy bloggers”?  We just can’t get enough, can we?

I’ve had the idea for World Moms Blog’s “review/letter from the editor” column for our empty Saturday slot in my head for weeks now.  (I need help with the name for it, please help!) It’s time to put it into type…

Here’s how I describe it: (more…)

Jennifer Burden

Jennifer Burden is the Founder and CEO of World Moms Network, an award winning website on global motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. World Moms Network writes from over 30 countries, has over 70 contributors and was listed by Forbes as one of the “Best 100 Websites for Women”, named a “must read” by The New York Times, and was recommended by The Times of India. She was also invited to Uganda to view UNICEF’s family health programs with Shot@Life and was previously named a “Global Influencer Fellow” and “Social Media Fellow” by the UN Foundation. Jennifer was invited to the White House twice, including as a nominated "Changemaker" for the State of the World Women Summit. She also participated in the One Campaign’s first AYA Summit on the topic of women and girl empowerment and organized and spoke on an international panel at the World Bank in Washington, DC on the importance of a universal education for all girls. Her writing has been featured by Baby Center, Huffington Post,, the UN Foundation’s Shot@Life, and The Gates Foundation’s “Impatient Optimists.” She is currently a candidate in Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs in the Executive Masters of Public Affairs program, where she hopes to further her study of global policies affecting women and girls. Jennifer can be found on Twitter @JenniferBurden.

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WASHINGTON, USA: Running on Empty

“Looking out at the road rushing under my wheels, looking back at the years gone by like so many summer fields.”  I hear Jackson Browne on the radio, and I realize that he just described the way I have been feeling over the past two months. 

The last year has FLOWN by so fast!  As I look back, I feel like I haven’t had control over how fast the days unraveled. 

The juggling between working professional,  wife and mother, have made me feel like I’ve been “running on”, but add in Kindergarten research and house-hunting to the mix and I’m just tired and feel like I’m “running on empty” . 

It didn’t feel like this exhausting when there was just one child to care for.  (I know, that’s a no brainer.) 

I honestly don’t know how women do it with more than two kids…my hat goes off to you ladies!  (more…)

Eva Fannon (USA)

Eva Fannon is a working mom who lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her hubby and two girls. She was born and raised on the east coast and followed her husband out west when he got a job offer that he couldn't refuse. Eva has always been a planner, so it took her a while to accept that no matter how much you plan and prepare, being a mom means a new and different state of "normal". Despite the craziness on most weekday mornings (getting a family of four out the door in time for work and school is no easy task!), she wouldn't trade being a mother for anything in the world. She and her husband are working on introducing the girls to the things they love - travel, the great outdoors, and enjoying time with family and friends. Eva can be found on Twitter @evafannon.

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