Yesterday we ate dinner early, so by the time the children were done watching a few videos and playing together, they were ready for a snack before bed. We popped up a big bowl of popcorn, got out the roasted peanuts, and sat in the middle of the kitchen floor with books Andrew had picked out for us -- of course the all-time favorite, Make Way For Ducklings, and then a few others.
It's kind of funny how a spontaneous thing like that can become the very best part of a day. Everyone happy, content. My legs started to go numb from the hard floor, but it was totally worth the peaceful togetherness of the moment.
This week I read my new favorite book, Rockabye: From Wild to Child ($10.85 on Amazon.com), by Rebecca Woolf (of online zine Babble.com's Straight From The Bottle and her personal blog Girl's Gone Child).
It's the most hilarious, blatantly honest, raw, moving look at motherhood that I've ever encountered. There are a myriad of parenting books out there, but this one touched me the way none else have. I actually cried and laughed out loud throughout, and I cannot say that about many books -- fiction and non-fiction alike.
What I appreciate most about this book is Rebecca's insistance on the fact that it's possible, and indeed desireable, to remain your own, individual self, even after becoming a Mommy. As a mother I've struggled many times with the issue of feeling swallowed whole by the new identity given to me by being Andrew's Mother. Elijah's Mother. Lavella's Mother. Motherhood is such a title -- how can there be any room left over for the Me I've always been?
Reading this book was like getting to know a new friend who could relate to so many of the things that I've gone through in the past 5 years, and who could give me the re-assurance that I don't have to be afraid of the things I think, or the way that I think, but I can just express who I am, and be a mother in the way that is best for me, and for our little family.
I'm not sure if Greg will appreciate it as much as I did, but I'm mailing it off to him just the same. This is going to become my new go-to book for New Mom gifts.
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