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I Can’t Wait Until Lena Dunham Becomes a Mom

Photograph by Instagram

There are gigantic dark circles under my eyes, and I have a pulsing headache that comes from getting too little sleep. I stayed up way too late last night — I was still up when my son crawled in my bed at 2 and when my daughter arrived an hour later. I was reading Lena Dunham’s new book "Not That Kind of Girl," and as physically depleted as I feel today, I can say this: I regret nothing.

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When your girl-crush writes a book, you have it express-shipped the day it’s published and you read it until the sun comes up.

After each delightful chapter covering topics ranging from bed-sharing with her sister, losing her virginity and seeing therapists most of her life, I became more and more convinced of one thing: I cannot wait until this woman has a baby.

I can picture it now. She’s four weeks post-partum and there’s a spread in "Life Magazine" (that still exists, right?) of her nursing her baby in the buff. While Angelina Jolie gave us one sacred vision of motherhood, I myself will be partial to a woman who looks more like I do and admits she’s as neurotic as I am. Dunham is famous for bearing it all on her critically-acclaimed series "Girls," so can you even imagine what someone as brave and creative as Dunham will do will her postpartum body?

I’m sorry, but it’s awfully hard, nay impossible, to project my own postpartum body onto Ms. Jolie (or Ms. Alba, or Ms. Ripa or Ms. Stefani). None of those women look like me or show the type of humanity — fraught with anxiety, insecurity and longing — that Dunham writes about so eloquently in her book and displays so generously on her show.

The one-sided reporting of the experience of motherhood only makes the rest of us struggling with breastfeeding, depression and anxiety feel more isolated and freakish.

And of course Dunham is so much more than her fierce, beautiful, tattooed body. She’s a potent mixture of humorous, honest and humble that is too often missing when famous celebrity moms talk about motherhood. I remember once nursing my baby at 3 a.m. and catching an interview with Celine Dion, who could not stop gushing about how “perfect” her children were. Every word out of her mouth was unmitigated, glowing praise for every aspect of motherhood. I couldn’t relate. In fact, that was the night I smashed the remote control against the wall in rage. I had a similar reaction when GOOP was on Oprah talking about her daughter, Apple, in a similar vein. I don’t begrudge any mother her bliss, but the one-sided reporting of the experience of motherhood only makes the rest of us struggling with breastfeeding, depression and anxiety feel more isolated and freakish.

So to the woman who memorialized for the world that she once tried to flirt by announcing that she “only get[s] BO in one armpit,” I salute her candor and beg her to keep it coming when she takes that magnificent leap into motherhood. We need more voices like hers.

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Confidential to Lena Dunham: I know you’re busy conquering Hollywood and setting the world ablaze with your fearsome creative brilliance and motherhood may not be a top priority, so no pressure, but I’m saving a spot for you and your Mini-Me in my playgroup.

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