The Korean moms group I run

kimchi ummas

For almost nine months now I’ve been running a Korean ummas (moms) friendship group that meets for playdates, ummas night outs (노래방!), storytimes, potlucks, meals, and other events. It’s been really wonderful to connect with other Korean moms and lately it’s been expanding my mind about what it is to be a Korean mom.

Why I started the group
I grew up without any connection to Korean culture until I was in my 20s so I was compelled that my kids have a different experience. I want them to have Korean friends and to know what it means to be Korean. When I started the group I had a few Korean friends whose houses I could go over to from time to time, but there were days when I pined for something more. As a friend of mine explained: “You have a distant star but what you want is a galaxy.”  Exactly. I looked around and none existed so I had to create it for myself. (Sense a trend here? I do this–want something and through research find it doesn’t exist so then have to go and create it for myself. Example: my birth family.) Continue reading

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Sometimes it’s great to work with mostly women. . .

On the waddle into work this morning, feeling huge and slow and roly poly, I ran into a few co-workers who all asked me how I was feeling. Below are some of the responses I got–they completely changed my mood!

And yes, I am pregnant.  My due date is October 5th.

  • “You don’t look swollen at all. Women at this stage of pregnancy normally look swollen all over and you don’t look swollen anywhere!”
  • “Wow, you look amazing!”
  • “Your belly is so perfect; such a perfect shape! It looks like when people put a ball in their belly to pretend they’re pregnant.”
  • “You don’t look huge at all. From the back you can’t even tell you’re pregnant.” For the longest time I found this statement so strange; the baby is in your belly, not in your back. But by now I’ve gotten used to it. Some women really gain weight all over their body and so sometimes it does look like they’re pregnant in the butt, hips, etc.
  • “Your hair looks different. . .” I cut my bangs and shortened it. “It looks great!”
  • “Are you working out like everyday of your pregnancy?” No, I worked out yesterday and the day before and maybe before that once/week for a few weeks. Before that, yes, I was working out a few times/week. “Wow, you work out more than I do and you’re like 10 months pregnant.”

This same woman told me that her sister’s due date was the same as mine last year and she had her baby today but last year. Ohhh, fingers crossed!