Did you know that one of my essays is about to appear in a soon-to-be released collection? It's the third book in which one of my pieces will appear, and I'm very excited about it. It's called Mommie Diarist, and the official release date is April 7.
Here is an excerpt from the book; I hope you like it.
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It is when I am going through a divorce, ten years later, that I see my mother’s gossamer fragility and steely strength, hand in hand. She is devastated that I am in pain, and she listens to me beg for strength on the other end of the phone, dissolved by tears, hundreds of miles away. Yet she stands up and tells me that I will survive this. She reminds me to remember the happy things in my life. She swears under her breath and calls my soon-to-be ex-husband every bad name in the book in both English and Italian.
And later still, when I remarry and have a child of my own, I realize that I have started bossing my mother around as though I am smarter than she is. I suffer from postpartum anxiety, and in the midst of the struggling, I forget that my mother raised two daughters already, and quite well, thank you. And yet, nothing she does seems to be right when it comes to my son.
“Why are you holding him like that? He doesn’t like that.”
“Please keep your eye on him.”
“Swaddle him like this, not like that.”
I’m not sure why I believe that I am God’s gift to mothering and she doesn’t have any idea what she’s doing.
My mother and I take a drive to run some errands while I am visiting her in Florida. I am once again telling her what to do and how to do it, and suddenly I stop. I put my hand on hers as she drives and I say, “Why do I do that?”
“Do what?” she asks.
“Tell you what to do as if you are a child,” I say. I am sheepish.
She opens her mouth and a laugh peals out like a bell.
“I did the same to my mother, too,” she says.
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Do you remember what it's like to be in the muck? Christine Organ is right there with you.
Allison Slater Tate hits it out of the park again with this simple list of things she wants for her kids in school: The 5 things I wish for my elementary school kids
Leslie Marinelli, a fellow Listen To Your Mother alumna and all-around amazing woman published this post today, and her vulnerability speaks to me. No matter what you're doing as a mom, you're probably going to feel like you're not doing it right.
I have to admit that we try hard to get all of our thank you notes out on time, but we don't always succeed in completing them. This post from Tracy at Sellabit Mum about teaching your kids how to do it right is spot on.
This slide show from Katie Hurley at Everyday Family is helpful and instructive on anger management for parents.
Adrienne Jones is a beautiful and honest writer, and this essay about learning how to be a stepmom is another example of her fantastic work.
Janelle, of Renegade Mothering, has a straight-up delivery that pulls no punches. This one really made me appreciate my mother, and also, my own way of mothering.
In case you missed it at my Facebook fan page, this essay from Wendy Bradford at The Washington Post is perfectly crafted and real; if you have a child with any kind of special needs, you will appreciate this.
If you have a blog, read this. I saw it on Nina Badzin's wall (and Nina always has excellent content to share) and it reminded me of all of the wonderful things that being in the online community has brought to me.
This one at Salon about a woman's biological mother finding her was heartbreaking and hopeful at the same time.
Don't open this one in front of your kids, to save yourself from red-face syndrome, but if you have an appreciation for brands and what they do to mitigate potential disaster, this example from Groupon is fantastic.
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I want to celebrate my friend Rachel's book debut, Hands Free Life. She is one of the nicest, most thoughtful people I have ever met - she really is everything she writes about on her blog; she's the real deal.