Tara Mandarano
Tara Mandarano lives just north of Toronto. A first-time mama navigating life with a tyrannical toddler, she loves to share stories about life with her two-year-old daughter on her blog, taramandarano.com. She's also a book lover who drinks copious amounts of herbal tea. Her work has also been published in The New Family. Follow her on Twitter (@taramandarano).

Entries by Tara Mandarano

How Children's Books Make Me A Better Parent

(1) Comments | Posted September 8, 2016 | 2:05 PM

My bookworm heart always hoped my daughter would take after me. That she would turn naturally toward the written word, and find herself another world. Sometimes I catch a glimpse of her, tucked up on the fuzzy carpet in her room, flicking through brightly coloured pages, and I feel the wonder in...

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PMDD Symptoms Turned My Period Into An Emotional Write-Off

(6) Comments | Posted August 3, 2016 | 3:54 PM

I remember sitting on my psychiatrist's fancy white couch six months after giving birth, perched on the edge of sadness. I had already been diagnosed with post-partum depression and prescribed anti-depressants. They were helping me cope with the chaotic day-to-day life of new motherhood, but inside I was...

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How I'll Survive My Daughter's Transition To Daycare

(0) Comments | Posted May 26, 2016 | 12:43 PM

Change is on the way, and I am not ready for it. Daycare is your destination, the next step in your development, but my heart is struggling at the thought of letting you go. For two and a half years I have loved you and worried about you, nearly in...

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How To Hang On To Your Marriage When You Have A Kid

(0) Comments | Posted May 13, 2016 | 12:06 PM

I never fully realized how much of a strain parenting would be on my relationship until my daughter arrived. Sure, in theory I knew that having a baby would change everything -- forever -- but I didn't really grasp just how much that extra person would alter the fabric and...

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My Daughter Taught Me It's OK To Be An Introvert

(10) Comments | Posted April 18, 2016 | 2:29 PM


Thirty-six years. That's how long it's taken me to discover it's OK to be a soft-spoken introvert in a loud-mouthed world. I've always felt like an imposter and an interloper. The life-changing event that changed my perspective happened in 2013: I gave birth...

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Lena Dunham And I Have Something in Common: It's Called Endometriosis

(15) Comments | Posted February 10, 2016 | 11:15 AM


When I saw Lena Dunham post recently about her battle with endometriosis and how she needs to take some time off work to rest, it really struck a chord in me. I never expected to have much in common with a famous actress, but it's...

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Motherhood Is A Constant Challenge - And Not Just On Facebook

(4) Comments | Posted February 4, 2016 | 4:54 PM

When my friend nominated me in a "motherhood challenge" on Facebook the other day, I glanced at her cute photo collage and smiled. It didn't make me angry. I wasn't outraged on behalf of all women, and I certainly didn't feel tempted to punch my computer screen.


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5 Lessons Play Dates Have Taught Me About Life

(0) Comments | Posted February 1, 2016 | 11:45 AM

For the first 18 months of my daughter's life, I avoided play dates and mum groups like the plague. Any mention of a social outing involving a bunch of mothers and their babes left me feeling anxious. Introverted by nature, I dreaded the thought of trying to strike up conversation...

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The Moment I Lost My Toddler At The Mall

(10) Comments | Posted December 21, 2015 | 8:39 AM

It was a Wednesday like any other: a mid-morning outing to the mall with my two-year-old. We were enjoying our new mother-daughter tradition -- strolling around the shops and splitting a banana chocolate chip muffin in the food court. She ate most of it while I inhaled my caramel-flavoured coffee,...

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Maintaining My Identity In Motherhood

(1) Comments | Posted December 10, 2015 | 10:28 AM

I remember sitting in the fertility specialist's snazzy chair and not quite comprehending what I was hearing: my baby was due on my birthday? Did this actually happen to people? 

It felt like I was winning some sort of cosmic, karmic lottery. What were the odds? What did it mean?...

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Let's Stop Pretending We're Perfect Parents

(0) Comments | Posted December 2, 2015 | 5:29 PM

Life with a child is rarely picture-perfect. Yes, there are flashes of unfiltered happiness to be captured and held close to the heart, but more often than not, there's also a lot of mess and chaos and crying behind the scenes.

When I see friends, family, or even complete...

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A Second Glance At First-Time Motherhood

(6) Comments | Posted November 27, 2015 | 2:46 PM

It's amazing what a second glance at first-time motherhood reveals. Those early days are steeped so strongly in my memory. Before my daughter was born, my brain drew up a blueprint of what I thought life would be like, post-baby. It included nursing in the rocking chair in the middle...

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