When I discovered I was a mother to be I decided that knowledge was power.
I devoured every book I could lay my hands on which dealt with the subject.
I read information books, expert books, funny books, I talked to friends, I talked to relatives and I would watch each and every programme on parenting that eeked it’s way out of my TV screen.
I sucked up information like a dried out sponge and I took each and every snippet in and stored it in my internal parent-to-be hard drive.
Unfortunately back then I hadn’t discovered blogs or blogging. I didn’t know such a thing existed.
I can now safely say that ‘mummy’ bloggers are the best read if you are expecting a baby.
In the year I have been reading them I have seen more raw honesty, plain speaking and home truths than I ever saw in a shelf-full of help books.
And just recently I have read a couple that really made me sit up and think ‘now THIS is what blogging is about. This is what I should have been reading 7 years ago’.
There is something quite beautiful in the heartwrenching honesty of a mother sharing her darkest moments or her worst fears. There are no sanitised words – just the truth about real mums and their experiences and THAT is what we should be encouraged to read when we’re heavy with child.
I was thinking about my new found bloggy friend Metropolitan Mum, who is expecting her first child any day now, and how lucky she is to have found the path to blogsville and how much richer it will make her life as a new mum.
So, here are a few posts that I have read recently and just made me think wow.
They don’t make easy reading, but they do make me proud to be part of this online community.
Breastfeeding: What they don’t tell you.
Nursing mum Catherine , who writes at Her Bad Mother, recently breastfeed another woman’s baby.
That’s right, she breastfed another woman’s baby.
Shocking I know and, while I’d like to think I could do that for a mum in need, I struggled with the question ‘what would I have done?’
But far more shocking was the backlash she received from an outragedonlooker. Check out the comments section. Rivetting stuff.
“What I do with my boobs – what any mother does to ensure that her baby gets fed – is none of your business . . . your public expression of disgust and alarm hurts. It reinforces the idea that breasts and breastfeeding hover on the very razor’s edge of shamefulness, that these things on our chests are somehow, in some way, dirty and icky and bad.”
Depression: Not the version your mother ever told you about
New blogger More than Just a Mother is so upbeat and fun that it’s hard to believe she suffered with depression. But boy did she. And boy did she write about it elloquently and honestly.
A beautifully haunting post that must have been so very hard to write, but we should all be so thankful she did.
“Far worse than my indecision and inertia was how I felt towards my new babies. Or more accurately, the way I didn’t feel. Oh, I’d have rescued them from a burning building, but I didn’t love them. I didn’t feel a connection with them in the way I knew I should; in the way I felt with my other children.”
So when she wrote a post about her life before children and the destructive and abusive relationship she managed to escape, my chin hit the floor.
Beautifully written as a letter to her daughter, it’s utterly captivating and actually made me punch the air and think ‘you go girl’ – and that is SO not like me.
“Reesie-girl, I hope you know that as you grow older, you can always talk to me about anything. I will always listen with open ears, and open mind, but more importantly, an open heart. Don’t be like me. Don’t be ashamed, embarrassed, scared”
The real face of bullying
We hear all kinds of whys and wherefores about children being bullied in school and what we should do and what we shouldn’t do, but when Vodka Mom wrote this short piece about her boy being picked on it really hit a nerve.
“Then, after you are asleep and the worries of the day are wiped away, I will pray that God gives you the strength that you will need to navigate your way through what will surely be painful and difficult teen years.”
Did you read everything you could when you were pregnant, or did you opt to go with the flow?