The misinformed outrage of parents who want schools to open full time this Fall

“Zoom is ruining my life!” R says melodramatically.

It’s always a little jarring to me when I hear mental health terms used colloquially these days. On the one hand, I’m glad that mental health is not a hidden, taboo topic like it was when I was growing up. It is without a doubt an absolutely essential conversation for all of us to be having.

On the other hand, I sometimes feel like the conversations surrounding mental health are too superficial.

Lately I am finding that there has been a casual overuse of these terms in the context of schools being closed. There is an outcry among parents that…

A personal timeline of living outside of White Privilege

Asian Americans breaking the model minority mold by Connie Wang

I wrote the following essay over a year ago in April 2019. It was in response to a restaurant called Lucky Lee’s that opened, and swiftly closed, in New York City. At the time, I was consumed with outrage. I forwarded the story to all my non-White friends and family. Racism was not something I regularly spoke about in my day-to-day life. But it was always just under the surface, and any time something like this happened, it awakened a ferocity in me.

For a few days, I had heated conversations with confidants. Almost everyone agreed that the woman who…

How We Are Surviving Distance Learning

Photo courtesy of author

I have never been one to take teachers for granted. For me, growing up with a mentally ill parent, teachers were my primary link to sanity and the world at large. School was my safe place and I prided myself in being Teacher’s Pet, even as this often earned me the disdain of my peers. I am a teacher by trade myself, though what I teach is yoga to grownups, which is really not comparable to the mighty work of school teachers.

It took only a few minutes into our first day of “homeschooling” to truly feel the enormous importance…

Q: Is there anything you’ve learnt as a mother that you’d pass on?

A: To my dear friend who had her first baby just three weeks ago… You asked me this question over text but I couldn’t figure out how to succinctly respond. Here are 22 things I’ve personally learned as a Mother (so far):

  1. The experience of Motherhood is as unique as your individual self and as your incredibly individual new baby. We all know that comparing ourselves to others is pointless and quite probably detrimental to our self esteem and mental health. This is perhaps never more true than in the context of new Motherhood. You may be surprised by deeply entrenched expectations that you did not even know that you had, but that have a place in your subconscious simply from what you’ve seen, been told, and assumed as being ideal throughout your life up to this point. It is important to…

The Masks that We Wear

Photo by Joanna Swiercz on Unsplash

I am in the Swiss countryside for my childhood bestie’s wedding. Despite the dense fog stubbornly asserting itself amidst the alps, the atmosphere is deeply beautiful. There is a sense of serenity, a feeling of closeness with Mother Nature.

My family has been traveling for the better part of the last three weeks, which have seen us from our current home of New York City to my hometown of the Bay Area to my husband’s hometown of London and we now find ourselves in a country that is brand new to us all. Reconnecting with loved ones is our primary…

lone elephant in the room. Creative concept

I can count on one hand the number of direct conversations I’ve had with my parents about my mom’s mental illness. These very few conversations were all during the time that my mom was in a coma following yet another suicide attempt. As such, these conversations were only with my dad and they only transpired due to the forced necessity of answering doctors’ questions, as well as an impossibility for our family to continue carrying on in denial.

I was 30 years old at the time, which means that for basically three decades, my family lived with and around the…

Finding My Mother’s Love After Our Darkest Hours

Stephanie Wunderlich/Getty Images/Ikon Images

I spent last weekend with my parents at their home in California. Family visits are often complicated — even for the best of us, aren’t they? We all have our dysfunctions, histories, and quarrels.

I kept waiting for my mom to criticize me, or R. (my son), or about how I was parenting R. The criticism, however, never came. I kept wondering: was she going to say I needed a haircut? Or that R. — a boy with waist-long hair — needed a haircut? Was she going to say that I had gained weight? Comment that I was eating too…

As a daughter of mental illness, I carry with me a profound sadness and pain that I don’t think will ever fully heal. I am never unaware of it. How could one ever forget such a fact? But the big-ness of it usually, thankfully, sits back from my day to day. I don’t actually think there’s room for it, if I am to carry on as a mother myself and as a generally functioning person of society. …

Healing the guilt and shame over having an unexpected C-section.

bMother and Baby | GoGraph

We are getting close to R’s 5th birthday. Five!! I’ve always thought of five as being the age when everything starts for real. It might be because my own earliest memories are from when I was five or because five is traditionally when you start Kindergarten. The way I see it, before five, you are a newborn, then an infant, then a toddler. I once looked up what age you stop being a toddler and I mostly came across the idea that you’re a toddler until you’re four. But four feels much littler than five for some reason. …

Illustrated by Suzii Chan

When someone responds to tragedy or bad news by pointing out the “silver lining,” it reflects their own discomfort and even fears about the situation. It reflects their inability to truly empathize and hold space for pain — yours as well as their own. You don’t always have to jump to naming the silver lining. Be okay not being okay. Be okay not trying to make things okay because some things won’t be okay, or will require much more time before they will be okay.

When you’re hurting and you reach out to someone to talk about it, it’s jarring…

Leah Kim

Bios are hard. I am a mom, wife, and yoga teacher. I write about mental health and motherhood. You can find my yoga programs on the Nike Training Club app.

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