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Love & Marriage

Winston and Clementine Churchill

 

A friend of mine recently shared a 2014 article from the Atlantic,  How to Save Marriage in America, that I really enjoyed and promptly shared with my husband and a few others. The premise of the article is that college educated women are the most important drivers of the new model of marriage- one that has morphed from its reliance on traditional ideals (as they state it: he brings home the bacon and she cooks it) to a more equitable partnership built on family. “Unlike their European counterparts, increasingly ambivalent about marriage,”author Richard Reeves notes, “college graduates in the United States are reinventing marriage as a child-rearing machine for a post-feminist society and a knowledge economy. It’s working, too: Their marriages offer more satisfaction, last longer, and produce more successful children.” The crux of the article is that well educated Americans are waiting longer to get married, make more thoughtful decisions on their partners, are wealthier when they enter into said union,  experience romantic love with one another to boot, and then take the final step to become parents. “Money, Marriage, Maternity: in that order.” 

It is a fascinating look at the dissolution of a traditional marriage mold that doesn’t suit the demands of our increasingly demanding economy. Both parents bring home the bacon and share a value system that puts family first. These are couples who gladly spend the weekend at children’s activities as a departure from their office lives and a way to spend quality time with their most prized relations. But what perhaps goes unmentioned is the strength of the traditional marriage construct in these post-feminist marriages. Unrelated to the act of child rearing, many couples continue to divide the minutiae of marriage along traditional party lines, with a twist. I cook, he does the dishes. I do the laundry, he takes out the trash. I coordinate child care, he ensures those bills are paid, and promptly. The New York Times, rather humorously, touches on this in another (newer) article, titled “Taking Out the Trash? That’s Still a Man’s Job, Even for the Liberal Coastal Elite.”   But it’s a division of responsibility I hear time and again from fellow professional married women, And it seems to work well, or as well as it can, under the circumstances.

In the end, the negotiation of where time is devoted between a couple (your value system quote unquote), is one that continues to evolve. I am reminded of this 1970’s New York Magazine cover, which begs the question: “He Works, She Works, But How Does the House Work?” This might seem like a hilariously retro question, but it is a central one. Keeping the house might seem frivolous but where else are family lives built? 

In the end, marriage as a construct might be evolving but the benefits a good marriage confers on its participants, and especially their children, appears undeniable. And with that – I am reminded of Sir Winston’s reflection that“My ability to persuade my wife to marry me was quite my most brilliant achievement…” Churchill was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, won the Nobel Prize in Literature, and was the first person of eight to be made an honorary citizen of the United States. And yet despite his myriad achievements, however, his 56 year relationship with his wife Clementine, one that bore 5 children, was his most revered.

In a letter that Winston penned to Clementine in 1935, twenty-seven years into their marriage, he said this:

“Time passes swiftly, but is it not joyous to see how great and growing is the treasure we have gathered together, amid the storms and stresses of so many eventful and to millions tragic and terrible years?”

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new life (who dis)

This time my extended absence is wholly justified… You see, at the end of January, my husband and I brought a new baby girl into the world. The last 6 weeks have been both a massive blur and the first time in my life, since childhood, where I have truly lived every moment.

Having a baby is incredible. I’m not sure I heard that much from people going in, quite the contrary actually. More than anything, we were given multiple warnings about how our lives would change: we’d never be able to go out again, we would lose our sense of spontaneity, I might all of a sudden be obese (this was a very real fear), we might never sleep again, I might come down with depression, my husband and I might divorce, in short- life with a baby was made out to be pretty terrible. On account of that, I spent the final weeks leading up to her arrival in a state of mild panic. One night, I cried, convinced that I might not have a motherly instinct after all, and what if I didn’t love her like she deserved to be loved? I wasn’t cut out for this- no, no, take me back please.

Then one Monday in January at 6 am we made our way to Mount Sinai for her scheduled delivery. I cried through multiple attempts to get the IV in, I cried when I had to leave my husband and make my way into the OR alone for what amounted to a 15 minute separation from him, I shook in terror on the surgical table wondering what on earth would happen. And then, between the talk of planned vacations and light hearted medical directives, they called the time, “8:40 a.m.” and I knew she had been born. And then I heard her cry. And it was the most unbelievable, utterly magical, insane moment of my entire life. The carried her past me and I thought surely I had gone to heaven- her perfect complexion, framed with a full head of dark brown fluff, her piercing blue eyes, her tiny little frame. My husband was beside himself. For the umpteenth time that morning, I erupted in tears.

It is difficult to describe how the experience has been, but I will try. People say it is a love that you didn’t know you had, and that is 100% accurate. It is an addictive type of love, a heretofore unattainable high. When they put her little body on my chest in the recovery room, I was beside myself. She was in there, this whole time? This angel’s spirit made tangible in the flesh. I guess I knew that there had been a physical being in there- there were kicks and turns that I felt, and sometimes saw, occur. But it was wholly impossible to link those movements to this little being in reality- it all felt like an illusion. It is an active type of love, one that impels you to do things you never believed possible- including yes, rising out of bed at ungodly hours to attend to her. But it is also one that forces, in that instant, a new hierarchy of the important things in life- one that places her so far above anything else that I previously cared about so as to render the rest near obsolete. We had only been in the hospital for a day or so before I was asking my husband if he was keen on having another.

I don’t know where the days go. We are fortunate enough to have full time help; and yet, I can’t tear myself away from her. She is the most poignant reminder of the fleeting nature of time; I see it in every ounce she gains and every changing facial expression she makes. And suddenly, tearing away for this dinner or that somewhere seems like an utter waste of time. I know I will feel differently as time goes on, and that this is largely the effect of some evolutionary instinct that would impel even the most scatter brained human to take care of her offspring- but nonetheless- I have wholly welcomed the change of pace. For someone who always had to have a full calendar- a trip always on the horizon and some perfect hotel chosen to stay in in that picture perfect locale, it is a wonder of the largest order that some of my greatest joys can be found in the most mundane moments at home.

I’d be remiss not to mention what it means to create one’s own family. Again, this is surely nothing new to anyone who has had children before- but it was and is a revelation to me. When I married M, I knew of course that he would be the father of my children. But I didn’t know how tremendously he would rise to the occasion. I have found in this experience a new well of love for him too, that I didn’t know had been there. The long and short of it is that over the course of a marriage you are able to see so many different sides of a person, and this one of M’s has been so defining of the strength of his character. It’s brought me so much joy. Now, more than ever, I realize how grateful I am to have found him. And how lucky our daughter is too- to have a father like I have in mine.

In some ways, having finally experienced all of this- I find myself wishing I had known it all sooner. If only I’d known how much I’d enjoy marriage, and parenthood, perhaps I would have embarked on it sooner. Or perhaps, it was the prolonged and exciting (sometimes tortuous) journey there that has made the destination all the sweeter. How is one to know why life unfolds the way it does. What I do feel now is that I have tapped into my reason for existence in a very real way. I was telling a good friend the other day that motherhood is one of the rare roles in my life that rewards tenderness. My desire to achieve career wise had made made me such a hardened person, and I hadn’t even realized that until I took an extended absence from the daily battle. That lesson has been eye opening- how can I go back, knowing what I know now of the person I actually am, and reconcile it with the person I was? Luckily, I won’t have that decision forced on me for yet a while. But it has been on my mind all the same.

Until then, I plan to return here more often, having thus emerged from the 6 week fog. Hello world. Is it me you’re looking for?

Ever yours,

Miss Sheiky

 

 

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I’m Back!

Well hello there!

I am back after an embarrassingly long “hiatus” that was really not a hiatus at all but 6+ months in the trenches of LIFE on the most intense level!  But I am so thrilled to be back at Maison Sheik with some very exciting life news and a recap on what I have been up to!

 

Studies:

Image via Ace Interior Design

When we last connected, I was just beginning my studies at Parson’s, and have since completed a number of in depth projects, including a complete redesign of the Parson’s Lobby into a restaurant and cafe space, a bedroom for a 10 year old girl with a passion for math, and my personal favorite, a Louis XV inspired pool house in Miami! I can’t wait to show you some of the work that I put together on these! I can’t tell you how much my technical expertise or vision have improved, and I am so excited to embark on this journey further this year. It has been the most rewarding and fulfilling discovery of my life so far! Speaking of decorating:

 

We Moved to Brooklyn!

After 10 years in Greenwich Village (yes, a full decade!) we made the move to Boerum Hill. It’s been incredible. We sleep with the windows open when it’s warm, and we see trees from every window of our (much more expansive) place. We have a working fireplace and 2 floors and basically, to a New Yorker, that sounds like fiction, but it’s true. We absolutely adore it here. I can’t wait to share pictures as we continue to finish decorating!

 

Work: 

After probably the most intense year of grinding it out, bending over backward like I was a gymnast in cirque du soleil, and what amounted to a full fledged political campaign (the trifecta according to tech) I earned a very hard fought for promotion at work in November. So now I can breathe again. It feels good. Especially because I worked intensely through some of the sickest and hardest months of my life when i should have probably been staying home nursing a gatorade, which leads to my next piece of news.

 

Baby!

My husband and I are expecting a baby girl in 2 weeks you guys! (Also, is there anything better than fat baby feet? I couldn’t resist the image above) Anyway, we can’t really believe it either. Going through this experience has made me realize just how miraculous the perpetuation of life is on this planet. We cannot wait to meet her and see her face. But first, a little recap of how the pregnancy has gone so far….

Memorial Day weekend, our friends Hilary and Allen invited us up to their family friend’s place, a summer camp in the Northeast Kingdom, Vermont. We decided to drive up the Thursday prior to the weekend’s kickoff so as to avoid the traffic leaving New York City. An idea which was, of course, shared by approximately 8 MM other people. Anticipating that this was the case, we picked up cold cut sandwiches at the Bedford Cheese shop on Irving place before hitting the road. I didn’t make it past Westchester before my vision turned blurry and I broke into a cold sweat. In other words, I became rapidly and deathly ill. And so we made a detour at a particularly lovely gas station in Larchmont as I proceeded to get more and more ill. Our husbands deliberated outside as to whether my husband and I should uber it back to the city and call it a day. Meanwhile, Hilary cornered me outside the bathroom.

“Dude, do you think maybe you’re pregnant?”

“Absolutely not,” I replied. After “trying” for 3 months, we had lost steam and decided to enjoy our lives instead (our resilience knows no bounds). Which amounted to us living it up, going out, sleeping little and generally having a ball for the month preceding. In other words, there was no way my body was a hospitable temple for anything other than late night falafel.

An hour later we were back on the road and I promptly fell asleep in my husband’s lap, and 5 hours after that we arrived at a freezing and rainy summer camp. The rest of the weekend brought sunshine, boat rides, feasts overlooking the lake, plenty of raw cheese and other indulgences, and an overall marvelous time. But when we returned to the city, Hilary’s words returned to me, and so I decided to take a test and just put the issue to rest.

Reader, it was positive.

From there started 18 weeks of the most brutal illness I have ever encountered. Every day was a fight to survive. But I did. And after that, I felt amazing. And inexplicably, she continued to grow.

And here we are, in the final stretch, excited, terrified, but ready to dislodge this baby from my rib cage ;-). I started my leave from work December 22nd, and after hosting my in laws for Christmas and getting a number of things in order home wise, I am rededicating myself to my loves, one of which is this beautiful blog.

So, those are the broad strokes, with A LOT to share in between.  Needless to say, I am thrilled to be back and sharing this journey with all of you! Thank you for reading!

xoxoxo

Miss Sheiky

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Weekend Recap

Weekends are just the absolute best, especially when you don’t have children (sorry, but also per our experience, true), and we lived it up and laid like logs in due measure.

Friday night we had a great friend and former mutual colleague over for appetizers, followed by the tasting menu at Domo Domo for dinner. Domo Domo is one of my  absolute favorites in the city for sushi, and have just expanded into a massive new space next door on Houston street as well. For the best meal, the experience at the original bar, where each pair is assigned a dedicated chef- is unbeatable. This time, we sat in the new space, which was beautifully done if not grossly understaffed. Nonetheless, the food was exceptional and the company even better. It was a perfect Friday night.

Saturday we woke up to torrential and unceasing downpours that lasted all day, leaving us with a pretty ideal situation: a brand new season of Master of None, and virtually nothing else competing for our time. We somehow managed to watch 6 episodes in a row, and each one is absolutely masterful. I already knew Aziz Ansari was a genius, but the light he sheds on the lives of women, people of color, immigrants, the children of immigrants, friendship, religion, wanderlust, career dissatisfaction, and relationships- is astounding. Needless to say, we barrelled through the remaining episodes on Sunday and don’t regret a single moment. HIGHLY recommend Master of None on Netflix for those who haven’t yet enjoyed it.

Aziz biking through Modena in Episode I – shot in black in white in an homage to old Italian cinema

Francesca (Aziz’s on-show love interest) and Dev (Aziz) in Washington Square Park

Eventually, we had to rise up for some fresh air, and attended a birthday party on the Upper East Side for a dear friend of ours who is extremely talented and all around lovely. With the intent to just pop in for a drink, we ended up staying for 4 hours. I think the running theme here is that my husband and I completely lack self control, lol.

As the Italians say, ALLORA….onto Sunday.

Minetta Tavern

Sunday morning started off as it usually does, with coffee and the paper, and we followed it up with a beautiful and sunny walk through Washington Square and deep into the east village, looping back again to meet our friend Tom for brunch at Minetta Tavern. We have a shared obsession with Minetta’s divine burgers and decided to gorge ourselves this Sunday, if for no other reason than that none of us had plans with our mothers for brunch. As always, it was decadent and amazing.

Washington Square truly showing off after the rain

 

Batman even made an appearance

There was a brief but intense rain storm that followed in the afternoon, followed by the most glorious sunshine, and we decided once again to head to the park. It was the dreamiest Sunday afternoon- the sun was so bright it created rainbows in the fountain, and the bubble man was there making these enormous bubbles that all of the children were going mad for. We sat on a bench and watched the young families with the small children who were losing their minds, the couples on romantic strolls, the beautiful dogs standing majestically in pairs, and all of the characters with boomboxes strapped to bicycles who come to the park to get attention. It was a quintessentially New York day, and the perfect end to a perfect weekend.

Finally, I’d be remiss to comment on Mother’s Day itself being yesterday. Being the excellent children we are, we sent our mother’s flowers to enjoy for the entirety of the weekend, and woke them up with calls yesterday too. We love them both so dearly, and are so lucky to have them in our lives. Mothers make the world go round (literally) and the ones in our midst are the very best, and deserve all of the love and adoration not just yesterday, but everyday. To them all, I wish a million weekends like these, or at the least, a million little kisses and hugs to make up for it.

With all my love,

Miss Sheiky xxx

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Updates

Sacre Bleu! I’ve been out of commish since 4/20?! Did I blink only for 20 days to pass?!

We had my parents in town this past weekend and it was absolutely incredible! They very rarely come to New York (for reasons unbeknownst to me because they are TRUE New Yorkers at heart when they are here) and we had an absolute ball with them. Friday’s weather brought forth a full fledged deluge that had their flight rerouted through ALBANY, but they finally made it (although- we had to relinquish our 4 tickets to the New York Philharmonic, which was the entire point of their visit). Not to fret however as my husband pulled out his phone and promptly bought 4 tickets for Saturday night’s performance via Stubhub. Yet another instance of our luck being hit considerably and our ability to respond in stride! We are getting pretty good at this!

Given that, we found ourselves with a free evening and some “post-show” dinner reservations uptown at Boulud Sud- so we had my parents over for a cheese spread that was fit for the Gods. They had a great time, and above all LOVED our apartment which made me the happiest person in the world. My mother was ready to move right in! And for the first time ever ever, not for nothing- she said she was proud of me. #daymade #yearmade What have you. Dinner at Boulud Sud was INCREDIBLE- I started with the asparagus soup which was bursting with flavor – followed by Sea Bass and then the most DELUSHUS spread of baklava and lemon verbena tea you ever did see.

Highlights of Saturday included dog watching in Washington Square, shopping in Soho, a long and luxurious nap with all the windows open while my husband and mom chatted on the balcony (hello alternate universe I love you never leave) followed by Beethoven’s 9th at David Geffen Hall at LIncoln Center, which was the most moving and MAGNIFICENT concert I have ever seen in my entire life. I cried like a baby you guys. It was insanely beautiful. Afterward, we were all on a high and floated over to PJ Clarkes for Oysters and Burgers. Both nights we stayed out well past midnight, something my husband and I don’t even do in our normal lives. Party animals those parents of mine!

Finally, Sunday we met them for breakfast at the Soho Grand, where they were staying, and saw them off to the airport. It was an incredible reminder of the beauty of New York in spring, how wonderful it was to spend time with my parents when 10 nieces and nephews aren’t vying for their attention, and just how lucky I feel in every single way. A soul restoring weekend, as it were.

There you have it! I SHALL be back tomorrow with all types of culture vulture and design updates- but I will leave you with that little jaunt through the weekend until then. Just so you know I am alive and well. Hoping you are too! BAH!

 

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Life Lately

Happy 4/20 my friends. Where oh where has this April gone? Am I seriously on a July 4th diet already? curses.

We’ve had a lot going on, quel surprise; this last week alone found us in Chicago and Boston (LA too for my husband); we’ve been redecorating and working and exploring and catching up with friends who have emerged from hibernation. It’s been a whirlwind, but it looks like things might be calming down slightly for both of us and we couldn’t be more thrilled. As such, I wanted to collect myself and share some excellent places we’ve been to and things we’ve done as of late.

 

1- The Whitney Biennial

This year’s Biennial was politically charged and we thoroughly enjoyed it. Of course we saw Dana Schutz’s “Open Casket”, a work that has come under a boatload of controversy for co-opting black suffering (Dana is a white woman). I however found it powerful and beautiful, and thoughtfully done. Dana has promised not to sell or profit from the painting, and I think that should be a good enough compromise for shedding light on a gruesome event in history.

The Whitney’s new space is also incredible, not only due to the fact that it’s a stone’s throw from my current office. The space is expansive and filled with light, and much easier to navigate than the Whitney’s old space on Madison. I particularly loved the works of New York photographer Deana Lawson and LA painter Henry Taylor, both of whom made intimate portraits of black men, women and children. Samar Golden’s The Meat Grinder’s Iron Clothes was a magnificent feat of illusion, and Raul de Nieves’ Installation was a revelation. It is a particularly wonderful way to kick off a weekend as the Whitney stays open late on Friday evenings – go and let me know what you think!

Works by Henry Taylor

Dana Schutz’ “Open Casket”

Raul de Nieves

Another view of Raul de Nieves

One of my favorite rooms – when we went at 6pm it was full of purple light (not captured here)

 Podcasts

I know, I’m always raving about podcasts, like a typical early 30’s NPR listening yuppy, but hear me out. On the way down from Boston we listened to “Missing Richard Simmons”, a podcast by obsessed filmmaker Dan Tiburski. An apt description from the podcasts’ own site:

“On February 15, 2014, fitness guru Richard Simmons disappeared. He stopped teaching his regular exercise class at Slimmons, cut off his closest friends, and removed himself from the public eye after decades as one of the most accessible celebrities in the world. Nobody has heard from him – and no one knows why he left. Filmmaker Dan Taberski was a Slimmons regular and a friend of Richard’s. Missing Richard Simmons is Dan’s search for Richard – and the deeper he digs, the stranger it gets.”

It’s so good, y’all.

The second and much more bizarre one I am listening to currently (if that is at all possible) is actually a work of fiction called “Alice Isn’t Dead”. From their site:

“Alice Isn’t Dead – a new serial fiction podcast from the team behind Welcome to Night Vale. A truck driver searches across America for the wife she had long assumed was dead. In the course of her search, she will encounter not-quite-human serial murderers, towns literally lost in time, and a conspiracy that goes way beyond one missing woman.”

After listening to a bunch of depressing non-fiction podcasts (S Town, Missing Richard Simmons), it’s refreshing to get my dose of depression from a work of fiction. At least then I can pretend it isn’t real ;).

 

Parsons the New School

Finally, and perhaps most exciting of all, I’ve enrolled in night courses at the Parson’s School of Design so that I can begin working toward my certificate in Interior Design. This has been a long time passion of mine and I am over the moon to be taking this step to credentialize  myself in that regard. Who knows where this will take me, though I have big plans for that too – I can’t wait for classes to begin and am so utterly thrilled to be taking this step. So I am knee deep in research on all things interiors and loving every minute of it.

 

That’s just a touch of what is going on around my parts, but all good things and I am feeling grateful for many things right now. Love to all of you and wishing you all a good and rapidly dwindling week! Enjoy your greens today!

xoxo

Ms. Sheiky

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10 Things

Oh Happy Day

Time for a Friday roundup – but first, how fucking fabulous is the wallpaper above? Yes- that is actual wallpaper from House of Hackney’s “Art Deco Menagerie” series, and I am lusting after it so badly for our entry way. (I can feel my husband’s nether regions receding into his body from here. Hear me out babe, I plead.)

But real talk, I’ve had it up on my desktop all day. It’s mesmerizing. AND ONE DAY SOON IT WILL BE MINE.

Other things I am loving so so much right now:

2) Chance the Rapper performing Blessings on Jimmy Fallon. Breathtaking. Must watch. This whole album is so gold.

3) Bonus: This drawing of “Chance the Raptor” that our bestie Tom sent me. Thanks brother.

4) Our new built in bookshelves and yuge ass OLED TV which are the two best things that ever happened to our apartment minus the humans in it, but just barely if we’re being honest. Here is a stock picture of the TV, for your pleasure.

5) Ava Duvernay’s The 13th on Netflix, which is the most astounding and enraging documentary I have seen in a long while. The NYTimes calls it “electrifying” and that’s honestly an understatement. Watch it.

6 & 7) On the opposite end of the spectrum, the new Dave Chappelle and Louis CK Netflix specials are so smart, so witty, and so utterly hilarious, they expose the true genius of these two gentlemen. Netflix is slaying it as per usual. SLAYING.

8) Have you checked out the new Vogue Arabia? I love how they are interpreting the Middle Eastern aesthetic. And aren’t we all tired of reading about former coked-out white girls marrying English lords and moving to the countryside? (Much more glamorous to marry a fat Emirati sheikh and dress in couture!)

Feast your eyes on this insane cover photo of Gigi Hadid. She is everything.

9) These shoes are the ultimate man repeller and for that reason I love them. Mules are back in y’all!

Rococo inspired mules. You know you like them.

10) And finally, the following organizations that have tirelessly provided support throughout the brutal, senseless, and endless onslaught on the Syrian people. Please click on the links below to donate to these exceptional causes, and start the weekend off knowing that regardless of your side in this latest argument (and for what it’s worth, this Syrian liberal sides with Trump), you will be supporting a people that so desperately need medical relief.

 

Doctor’s Without Borders

Syrian American Medical Society

With hopes that you all have a wonderful weekend full of lively adventures with great friends, long mornings spent poring over newspapers, good coffee and delicious meals, long walks and plenty of laughs. Thank you so much for your kindness after my last post. I truly love you all.

 

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Thoughts

Last Friday, I went in for oral surgery.

By way of background, these past few years my stress levels have been especially high; I have felt heightened pressure, like many folks in their early 30s do, to pour myself into my work as much as possible and make something of myself before the invisible “the window closes”. this window an insidious creation of both a culture that praises at the altar of 30 under 30, and an industry in which I don’t see a single face over the age of 45.  I have dug deep down and to process my own hypocrisy – on the one hand chiding Trump voters who don’t understand that it was automation, not immigrants, that took their jobs, and on the other hand knowing that I am single handedly playing a massive role in this automation and am myself putting structures in place that will allow for fewer people to do more and more.

There was a scene on this Sunday’s Billions where Mick Danzig has a session with Wendy Rhoades. In it, he relays his nightmares about Russian hackers destroying his portfolio. Wendy weighs this crisis of conscience and suggests his nightmares are reflective of the very real fears he has about the negative impact of his work on the people of Sandicott, who are about to be unceremoniously bled dry by a bad investment.

Thoughts similar to these and the stress it creates manifests itself in something very real, and that is grinding the ever loving shit out of my jaw. Despite wearing a mouth guard, I have spent what is now tens of thousands of dollars to correct issues arising from the crushing weight of my grinding, until last weekend I woke up with a partially swollen face and knew something terrible had happened. And I was right; I had, as a matter of fact, fractured a bone in my jaw, which had created a pathway for infection that caused half my face to swell. I saw two specialists first thing Monday morning.

Multiple scans later, I was given the news.

“I’m so sorry to tell you this, but we aren’t going to be able to save your tooth,” she told me, as I broke down into tears. “And we’ll have to do a bone graft to replace the one you have so that your gums don’t collapse.”

33 years old and already losing teeth, I thought. At this rate, I won’t have any if I’m so lucky as to live into old age. For me, this was devastating.

Friday afternoon, I went in for corrective surgery. I wish to God I hadn’t been awake for it- it was grizzly and painful and I wouldn’t wish it on an enemy. And two thoughts kept going through my head- 1) I am so Goddamn lucky I have dental insurance and 2) I am even more lucky that I can pay for what isn’t covered without a second thought. Because in addition to being painful and awful, this surgery would have bankrupted anyone, and that is a horrifying thought. And a proof point that health care is a fundamental human right.

I spent the weekend at home recovering, and was kind enough to have so many friends and family check in on me constantly. But I had a lot of time to think; and I realized that I need to get fucking serious about my stress levels and my health and what I want out of this short life. I have proven to myself that I can “do it all”, that I can start a new team at work and plan a wedding at the same time, that I can do right by my clients and do right by the example that my tireless parents set for us every day. But I also understand now that it is okay to set limits on what can and cannot be achieved, and that using fear to motivate myself to work harder, better, faster, stronger- is landing me in dire straits. When I look at what I want out of life – to have a happy marriage, children, to be nearer to my family and have more access to the outdoors and to read and write, and pursue joy, I realize what is not at the top of that list, and never will be.

That’s okay. And okay will have to do for now.

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Valentine’s Day

I woke up this morning to a very cheery “HAPPY VALENTINE”S DAY!” and a card which made my entire morning. Then I called my mother, who turns the ripe young age of 63 today, and wished her a great day. Then a close friend made a sizable donation to our favorite charity as just one part of an extremely generous wedding gift. Needless to say, I woke up feeling the love today.

People may decry valentine’s day and the “consumerist love” that it stands for, but it’s not about that at all. It’s about showing your love to the people around you. Giving your +1 an extra kiss or your friend an extra hug. It’s about giving the whole class store-bought valentines at school when you were little, and eating enough chocolate to make your stomach hurt. Now more than ever I feel a need to celebrate the things worth celebrating- and love is the most important thing there is.

So to all of you I wish the utmost love- from your families, your friends, your children, your spouses, your boyfriends or your latest Tinderella. Everyone deserves an extra little smoocher today, and I hope you all get that and more. Happy V Day from Maison Sheik to urrbody. With love

xoxo

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A Snowy Weekend in the Village.

    

What did you get up to this weekend? Friday night we went for dinner at the LIbrary at the Public Theatre, which I became a Partner of earlier this year in a successful attempt to get opening night tickets to Shakespeare in the Park, only to never return for an actual show. So dinner was a pretty good compromise and we feasted on fish and chips which was somehow perfect for how frigid of a night it was and how cozy it was indoors at the theatre.

I had pretty grand aspirations of Saturday which involved going to the New Museum to see the final weekend of the Pipolotti’s Rist exhibition, but faced with a snowstorm that came out of nowhere and no one to go with, I opted not to, which I now regret. I often don’t mind going to museum’s alone but it is infinitely more enjoyable to go with someone. I decided to turn the snowstorm into lemonade though and invite over friends for a rib sticking dinner of Yotam Ottolenghi’s Roasted Cauliflower and Hazelnut salad and a gorgeous Lamb and Date Tagine. Followed by ice cream sundaes and a rousing game of Apples to Apples, because we are officially not in our 20s anymore.

Sunday we went to see Manchester by the Sea at the Angelika, which is incredible if not the most depressing movie of the year. But it’s awards season and I get really into seeing all of the nominated movies, so M was nice enough to surprise me with tickets and we snuck in lunch and watched it Sunday afternoon.

Today I am off to San Francisco for a few days of meetings, and I’m not sad at all about going back to California. I hope you’re all staying warm wherever you are and I will post from there shortly!

xoxox

Miss Sheiky