JEN'S ZEN ~ This and That

My mind, suddenly racing, is saying, “It’s just the man who owns the house. He’s a nice man coming to chat, watching over his pumpkins for sale …” While at the same time, I find myself looking around for anything, a stick, a tool. Protection.

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Jen W. O'Deay
JEN'S ZEN ~ Transition

But in the end, it's a slice of a "day in the life" that all of us Parents are living right now as we transition from carefree Summer into the mega-scheduled school-year of Fall. I'm not planning to share this video beyond here in JEN'S ZEN and with our community who receives JEN'S ZEN in your inbox.

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Jen W. O'DeayComment
JEN'S ZEN ~ Bye, Baby

After a week at the YMCA Swim Camp, playing and learning, I was sitting on the opposite end of an Olympic-sized pool from my then 8-year-old, watching the final-day fun and activities.

She began to walk away from the diving block.

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Jen W. O'Deay
JEN'S ZEN ~ Growth

For the first time ever, since 2013 when I started writing JEN’S ZEN and many of you began loyally reading and sharing via Facebook along the way (thank you), I’m offering the opportunity to receive JEN’S ZEN through email straight into your inbox!

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Jen W. O'Deay
JEN'S ZEN ~ Dad-given

Unlike our children of this cyber-age who receive a social security number and email address upon birth (kidding, but marketing-minded folk are finding the idea brilliant), I’m of the generation who doesn’t breathe technology but must learn and take notes from my kids about how to post on Instagram. You, too?

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Jen W. O'Deay
JEN'S ZEN ~ Moms

often wondered what qualified me to be, or what could prepare me for being, their stepmom. I later realize that nothing qualified me and nothing could have prepared me for the role, which exists—and, personally, has grown into something beautiful—but was never intended. No two people have a baby together while daydreaming of who their child’s stepparents will be someday.

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Jen W. O'Deay
JEN'S ZEN ~ Weighty

How I didn’t drop to my knees right there at the sheer emotional weight of all that had taken place in the last few hours, the soaring emotions and life lessons between sisters and Parenting through it all … How I didn’t hit the fetal position and bawl and wail out, “Yes, so much yes!”

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Jen W. O'Deay
JEN'S ZEN ~ Sisters: Part 2

I approached the end of the hallway. To my left, big sister sitting on her bed in tears, her angry, hurt eyes piercing into me. To my right, little sister curled on her floor, big eyes pleading with me. I stood in the middle of the hallway, and opened my mouth to them both.

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Jen W. O'Deay
JEN'S ZEN ~ Sisters: Part 1

What to do when each of my two daughters were in their rooms at the end of our hallway, each crying, each upset, and with each step I took I was closer to potentially making matters worse.

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Jen W. O'Deay
JEN'S ZEN ~ Hope

Pregnant with twins, I’d gone into premature labor at 34 weeks and four days—far too far away from 40 weeks full gestation—but there was no stopping this. We’d already been there, 10 days prior. The meds (and the scary, made-my-body-shake-uncontrollably shots to boost lung growth of my two babies not yet ready to be born) had bought us time, but not enough time.

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Jen W. O'Deay