Sunday, January 5, 2014

the Good Mother Myth review and giveaway

giveaway is now closed - congrats to #2 Natalie!

I love to read! I always have at least one book on my nightstand, and I visit the library once a week.  I tend to check out mostly craft books, but I read a lot of novels on my kindle and nook.

So I was excited to receive a copy of a new book to review. It's called the Good Mother Myth: Redefining Motherhood to Fit Reality. Edited by Avital Norman Nathman, who writes the blog The Mamafesto. It's a collection of 35 essays, by a variety of mothers. And I do mean a variety. There are essays by a porn director, professors, musicians, and even a transgender mom.

Given all that, and the fact that I don't get myself worked up about feminism, I wondered if I would be able to relate to these stories. And I have to tell you, I loved this book. I didn't rush through it, instead reading an essay or two each night before bed. Doing some deep thinking. Reflecting on my own motherhood and my success/failure as a mom. It was a perfect read for this time in my life. You know, new year, new you and all that.

I've been slowed down my my surgery and forced to "do less", which leaves me feeling like I am falling behind somehow. I feel as though I'm in a race and losing to all the other moms who didn't leave a price tag on a santa gift, who already have their tree down and are taking adorable pictures of their kids playing in the snow.

There is a story in the book about facebook which made me laugh. Those sunshiny photos people share are just half the story. You don't know if the mom behind the camera is yelling at them to stop squirming, or if she's still in her pjs with unwashed hair. If the mess in the living room has been cropped out and filtered.

I found myself with tears rolling down my face as I read one essay from a mom who had PPD and a colicky baby. I look back on those days and I can't believe I lived through them. That same screaming baby who had me on the brink of despair turns eight tomorrow. 

I often feel like as bloggers, we have a certain theme to uphold - clean house, happy kids, lots of fun activities. And when I have a lot of time between posts, it's because those things aren't happening! I can't do a photo shoot when I have dirty dishes in the sink and piles of laundry to fold. And I'm letting myself be ok with that. I could be fake, or I could be real. I hope you'd prefer the real me.

Would you like to read it? Yes? Just leave me a comment. Maybe share a defining moment of your own motherhood experience, or a memory of your own mother being real (mine is of my mom in her muu-muu, sitting at the cluttered kitchen table) Or if you have a book you think we all need to read, share the title. I'll choose a winner in one week. US only please.


Anonymous said...

Oh dear Tammie, 2 1/2 years into motherhood and I still feel like a failure most times, especially when comparing myself to the likes of you and so many of my friends and family. Today's my day off, and I should keep cleaning, be working out, and doing something really awesome with my sweet boy. I guess as long as I get a big hug and an "I love you, Mom a" today, I'll manage thru another week and live to clean another day

natalie grant said...

when I worked at Comcare providing services for people who suffer with severe mental illness, I started to see that almost every woman on my caseload had lost a child (or 2,3,or 4) to the system due to issues with their MI. Although society and the law may say they did not "deserve" their children for a variety of reasons, I saw women who suffering from the most raw places of their soul. It was the first time I really began to consider what motherhood really was. I had all three girls by then, two were still toddlers, and I set on a quest to try and be a good mother (whatever that means). It has by far been the most difficult and rewarding position in life. I would love to read this book, thanks for pointing it out. It's cool that you are a book reviewer! And fellow supermom of course!

Lynn said...

thanks for the chance

Karrie S said...

I'd love to read it. I had my daughter at 17, and she IS 17.

Elizabeth said...

I love the concept of this book. Moms are always looking for the "right" way to do something, instead of trusting that they are already everything their child needs.


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