The Good Mother Myth: Redefining Motherhood to Fit Reality

The Good Mother Myth: Redefining Motherhood to Fit Reality

Avital Norman Nathman

Language: English

Pages: 288

ISBN: 1580055028

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

In an era of mommy blogs, Pinterest, and Facebook, The Good Mother Myth dismantles the social media-fed notion of what it means to be a "good mother." This collection of essays takes a realistic look at motherhood and provides a platform for real voices and raw stories, each adding to the narrative of motherhood we don't tend to see in the headlines or on the news.

From tales of mind-bending, panic-inducing overwhelm to a reflection on using weed instead of wine to deal with the terrible twos, the honesty of the essays creates a community of mothers who refuse to feel like they're in competition with others, or with the notion of the ideal mom--they're just trying to find a way to make it work. With a foreword by Christy Turlington Burns and a contributor list that includes Jessica Valenti, Sharon Lerner, Soraya Chemaly, Amber Dusick and many more, this remarkable collection seeks to debunk the myth and offer some honesty about what it means to be a mother.

The Book of All Things (Sacred Books, Book 4)

Fast-Forward Family: Home, Work, and Relationships in Middle-Class America

Overwhelmed: Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time

They Left Us Everything

Kids Who Think Outside the Box: Helping Your Unique Child Thrive in a Cookie-Cutter World

Between Sisters

















congregation booming in unison, the repetition of Christian-centric ideas—would overrule any impact I could have on Jonah’s perspective as his mother. I worried Mass might create an alienating schism between Jonah’s understanding of the world and mine, the canyon between the faithful and the doubtful. I was afraid that he would see Christianity as the only way up the proverbial mountain and later realize his mother was taking the scenic route. I feared his theoretical future judgment. I even

time again until finally we were only days from his birthday. I reconfirmed, for what felt like the hundredth time, exactly what type of cake he wanted: chocolate with vanilla frosting. We went over the guest list and what I had finally acquiesced to for his goody bags. And every so often during our birthday party discussions, he would remind me, with a look of glee on his face, that he had come up with the best birthday wish ever. Eventually his birthday came and went in a blur of kids,

upon the mistakes of the previous generation. What is remarkable is that I am still not able to extend the same kindness and compassion to myself. When nervous tension builds, and it invariably does, I am more than unkind—I am merciless. My fingers bleed, but the real violence occurs internally. The deep love I hold for my children has a frightening doppelganger in the contempt I have for myself. • • • My mother cries in our sessions, but I rarely do. In these meetings, I am scrupulously

complicated by a tiny, mewing, perfect creature she couldn’t ignore all day long, even if she wasn’t changing her diapers, or feeding her, or holding her nonstop (though she held her as much as she asked to). I never expected that taking the curves in the parking garage from the backseat of our station wagon beside a newborn in an infant bucket seat would feel like riding in a getaway car from a bank heist, or that this would be a sensation of parenthood, but there you go. Once home, I switched

between his vise-like thighs, you know. It takes years to develop the ropey muscularity he has. His little brother never seemed to have much baby fat. He didn’t have those bracelet-like folds of skin that form around some infants’ wrists or the hefty thighs that beg to be squeezed. Now, the tiny bit of chub remaining around his belly button seems to be getting smaller by the day. And most times when I try to gather it in my hand for a quick squish, he brushes me off with a mildly annoyed “Mom!”

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