I was a perfect mother. For eight days.
For eight painful, exhausting days, I thought of nothing but my newborn son’s happiness and wellbeing.
Each day, I allowed him to feed from my breast at ninety-minute intervals, despite the terrible latch, the cracking, and the bleeding.
“It’s okay,” the lactation consultant reassured me over the phone on Day 3. “If he gets a little blood with your milk, it won’t hurt him.”
“It hurts ME!” I wanted to scream.
But mothers aren’t supposed to scream about their own needs, so I gulped hard and croaked out, “Really? Oh. Okay. Good.”
* * *
That’s an excerpt from an essay I wrote for the latest HerStories Project anthology, RELEASED TODAY, called “So Glad They Told Me: Women Get Real About Motherhood.”
The goal of this book is to empower and unite mothers with real and honest parenting advice from women who have been there. And when I say “real and honest,” I very much mean real and honest.
Each of the 60 writers in this book highlights the best piece of parenting advice they’ve ever received — or the advice they wish they’d received. What we’re left with is an incredibly wide-ranging and diverse collection of advice from mothers in different stages of parenting and facing their own individual challenges. Here’s a sampling of the advice offered up in the book:
- Your child will adore you exactly as you are.
- You can love your kids and need a break from them at the same time.
- Being a teen mom doesn’t mean you can’t love motherhood.
- You may never stop wondering if you should have had one more.
- Not only can I not prevent my child’s suffering, sometimes I will be the cause of it.
- Divorce doesn’t define who you are as a mother.
- It’s not the end of the world if they don’t graduate.
It’s a perfect gift for expecting moms and new moms.
Also, experienced moms.
(P.S. This is the first time I’ve had my writing published in a book, so please forgive all the social media happy dancing I’ll be doing for the new few days. *dancedancedance*)