I'm Proud To Have Raised Such An Amazing Daughter

The first time I realized that my daughter was actually mothering me, she was all of 7 years old. We were at a summer pool party thrown by my ad agency's creative director—a mom herself, who loved kids. She was swimming with my daughter Lillie, who was playfully splashing her. "Take it easy," I called to Lillie. "That's my boss!" ...more
Sounds like you raised a great person!more

12 Marriage Dealbreakers

Most women get all up in arms about their husband cheating on them or getting gender reassignment surgery, but you know, honestly, that isn't what boils my bunny. I am totally cool with that. I say, go ahead—have an affair! Get a sex change! We've all got to follow our bliss. In my opinion, here's the real list of deal killers: ...more
OMG, the missing scissors!! I thought it was just a problem in my house!more

What Does Friendship Mean To You?

What makes someone a real pal? I mean, sure, there's a death in your friend's family, you show up for the funeral. She gets married, you go to the wedding. She gets sick, you show up for the sick part. (As long as said friend is not barfing. In the event of barf, I will leave something lovely at the door, but you will not see me till you're not germy. Sorry. It's a phobia.) I know all that, and I also know not everybody gets even those basics right. One guy turned down the invitation to my wedding because, as he put it, "Really, what fun am I going to have at your wedding?" ...more
I've had to go through the motions with this stuff too. Lately, I make an effort to detach ...more

Empty-Nest Syndrome Can Hit You When You Least Expect It

I didn't freak out when I turned 50. I liked the surprised reaction when I told people I was 50, as if I couldn't be so old. It was a proverbial milestone. Mostly I still felt young. Menopause was a breeze that year, and eh, presbyopia—reading glasses can look sexy. I just got used to turning 50, liked it even, when the unthinkable happened—I turned 51. It was like the day after a party and you wake up with the beginning of a hangover that lasts forever. ...more
I want to hear the next instalment! ps I am 51 this year too, bummer!more

Thanks, Mean Girls! You Taught Me a Valuable Lesson!

Despite all my worries, I'd enjoyed a pretty good first year of high school, with friends, decent grades and even a potential boyfriend — after the summer, of course, where I'd hopefully hook up at sleep-away camp. Upon arrival at my Catskills camp, I was surprised to see I wasn't with my friends from years past — the drama kids, the arts kids, the music kids — but put in a bunk with the "cool kids." Why not try something new?, I figured. ...more

That Time I Failed a Summer Camp Swim Test Because of a Hand-Me-Down Swimsuit

At 10, I was a strong swimmer. I'd been swimming since I was seven, when my complicated, hot-tempered father had taught me to swim at Orchard Beach, a huge, crowded public beach in the Bronx. We couldn't afford a "swim club," like many of the families we knew, who spent their summers lounging at the saltwater pool at Shorehaven Beach Club (now closed) and admiring the teenaged girls who competed at the end of the summer to become "Miss Shorehaven." ...more

The Moment I Realized I Had Become "Garden Lady"

I was hunched inside my flourescent orange raincoat, poking pole bean seeds in the dirt, when two teenage boys ambled past, one nestling a basketball under his arm. The same spring rain that had coaxed me out into my vegetable garden had driven the boys from the court next door. "Hi, guys," I said standing a little robotically after long minutes of crouching. "How's it going?" ...more
I loved this! And I bet you looked beautiful in your garden, even if the boys didn't recognize it.more

Will I Handle Aging Like My Father or Like My Mother?

Watching how my parents handle old age has taught me quite a lot. My mother has taken the scenic route of anger, resentment and blame. She complains about every little thing the caretakers do at the facility she lives in. The person who does her laundry is an ass; the person who helps fix her television is a moron. The food is awful and the other residents are worse than the food. ...more

My Period and Me

At the school bus stop, in fourth grade, Julie Hoff asks me, "Do you know what menstruation is?" I want badly to impress her because she's older by two years and she's pretty, but I also don't want to say anything dumb, so I just shake my head. ...more

I Miss My 'Sex and the City' Days

The days, weeks and months after my husband left me were the worst time of my life. At age 58, after 18 years of marriage, I couldn't imagine a future without him. Therapy didn't help. Neither did Prozac. For me, only one thing could lift my spirits—"Sex and the City." The HBO series transported me back to the life I lived before I got married in the first place. Watching Carrie and the girls allowed me to imagine I was single and in my thirties again, on the loose in New York, hanging out with my friends. ...more