Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
My Year of Living Naughtily

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January 2005
New Year's resolutions: Stop biting nails. Work on writing. Fight fear. Get an agent. Who do you think you're kidding? Tame inner critic. Grow thicker skin. Find lost libido.

March 2005
Sign with agent! Sign Naughty Mommy book contract! Celebrate! Enjoy drunk, wild celebratory sex with husband. Take that, inner critic! I'm the Naughty Muthafuckin' Mommy. What will I wear on Oprah?

May 2005
Receive first half of advance. Panic about depositing it. Bite nails a lot. Stop having sex. Fight about not having sex. Yell at everyone. Cry. Bite nails more. What the hell was I thinking? Question writing ability. Question naughty ability. Question mommy ability, particularly overuse of Calliou while buying time to write.

June 2005
Procrastinate. Decide editor hates me. Decide daughter hates me for sending her to preschool five hours a day. Avoid writing by cleaning and enjoying sex with husband in child-free house instead. Feel pretty sure husband doesn't hate me. Cry over that. Cry over edits. Miss daughter.

July 2005
Write like crazy. Remember old naughty side -- risk-taking, whiskey-drinking, dancing-on-table side. Remember my nasty, mean-spirited, imperfect, imaginary childhood friend, Herina. Use her as inspiration. Develop thicker skin. Consider that maybe editor is not so bad. Abuse caffeine. Agree with editor. See that daughter is fine. Paint fledgling nails.

September 2005
Realize other people might actually read book. Realize being thinned-skinned isn't the way to go when you're in the middle of writing a tell-all book about yourself. Panic. Worry about coming off as too naughty for my parents, worry about coming off as too nice for my naughty friends. Worry about stalkers, shame, and opinion of grandparents, in-laws, book reviewers. Melt when husband says he'll stand up for me, go to bat for me, kick any critic's butt. Inner critic fades under his certainty. Show husband thicker skin and new nails. Really show him, if you know what I mean.

November 2005
Receive copy of finished book. Who cares what anyone thinks? I wrote a damn book! I WROTE A BOOK! Carry book around for days like it's my new baby. It is: conception, gestation, three months of labor. Sleep next to book. Decide I'd nurse it if I could. Note that book baby doesn't affect sleep or libido in same way as real baby. Rejoice with more naughtiness.

December 2005
Fly to NYC to be on TODAY Show! Bite nails instead of sleeping on red eye. Wander city looking for fake nails but pick up stomach flu instead. Try to have naughty hotel vacation sex but end up puking instead. Sleep on hotel bathroom floor. Puke more. Stay up all night changing sheets for husband and daughter while they puke. Drag everyone to interview. Fight fear. Have strange desire to curl up in Ann Curry's lap and sleep. Talk about sex life on national TV instead. Daughter charms everyone in Green Room, hugs TV monitor with my picture on it. Take phone calls from friends who make fun of my hair. Talk to Mom, who calls to say I'll always be her star. No one notices nails. No more naughty New York nights. And, just like that, we're home.

January 2006
New Year's resolutions: Stop biting nails. Work on writing. Fight fear. Oprah? Who do you think you're kidding? Tame inner critic. Grow thicker skin. Enjoy mostly here, sometimes still-on-the-lam, quality-is-so-much-more-important-than-quantity libido. Start by kissing husband at midnight. Use tongue.

Heidi Raykeil is the author of the books Love in the Time of Colic: The New Parents’ Guide to Getting it on Again (Collins, 2009) and Confessions of a Naughty Mommy: How I Found My Lost Libido (Seal Press 2006). She is a contributor to Our Bodies, Ourselves: Pregnancy and Birth and to several anthologies, including Unbuttoned: Women Open Up About the Pleasures, Pains, and Politics of Breastfeeding (Harvard Common Press, 2009) and Literary Mama: Reading for the Maternally Inclined (Seal Press 2006). Her writing has also been featured in Parenting Magazine, Redbook, and online at Heidi lives in Seattle with her husband and two daughters.

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