Ariela Knoles, Writer & Founder of First Word is Ma
A story out of trillions
"So, what are you going to do now? You know, like, career-wise..." I sat across the inquisitive, well-meaning person as my three-month-old laid across my chest nursing for the fourth time that day. "This!" I replied, not knowing whether I made her feel dumb for asking or if she was disappointed I didn't come back with a satisfactory answer for our veteran feminists. Fortunately, a new movement of feminists called SAHM's (Stay-At-Home-Moms) was already on the rise, and for a movement, I'd say society caught on pretty quick. Now I get women who say to me, "Ah, you're so lucky you get to stay home with your kids. I wish I got to do that," or, "You see, that's what I want to do when I become a mom."
It wasn't before long after having my firstborn when women started asking for my advice on pregnancy, birth, parenting and baby gear. It also wasn't before long until I started having an itch to write again. So, with baby in arms, I put two and two together and started a "mom blog!" which sounds onomatopoeic for "throwing up." Try saying it out loud and you'll see what I mean...
Partly for that reason, this is not a mom blog. It's a collaborative journal for moms.
"Who were you before becoming a mom?" is something everyone wonders about SAHMs and I'm always happy - if not, eager - to answer. Before kids, I was part of the most caring and unpretentious team working in post-production of Season 9 on Curb Your Enthusiasm. One can only imagine how much of an honor this was for me, an LA-native who grew up watching Seinfeld and considered Curb to be a never-ending crash course on human behavior. Shortly before that, I lived in NYC and Chicago where I fervently wrote screenplays and poetry while sucking down on ciggies and stuffing my face with gluten-free peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Rewind some more, I made a good living in LA as an actor and model in national and international ads. Fast-forward just before moving to NYC, I was initiated into Vedic Meditation, became a twice-a-day meditator and somewhere in that met the man I was going to marry, Thom Knoles.
Everyone has a story. Especially the mom you see pushing the big, red cart down the aisle at Target. The mom crossing the street with the baby on her hip and twins holding each other's hands while being guided by her single, free hand. The mom who's your doctor and just weaned her baby shortly before your appointment with her. This is a place for every kind of mom to share her hard-earned experiences and duly passionate opinions with the world.
Moms, I hope you find First Word is Ma to be as much of a creative safe-haven as I do. For others, I hope this journal gives you more insight into the experience of every kind of mother out there, including one's own.