Compelling stories of motherhood from the producers of the popular public radio show This touching, thought-provoking book includes pieces on motherhood in its many manifestations written by more than sixty remarkable men and women from ordinary life, whose reflections and sentiments will resonate with readers far and wide. Among the contributors are young, middle-aged and elderly mothers (and stepmothers), as well as sons and daughters of all ages and from many different backgrounds. By turns funny and profound, this book is always engaging. Includes stories that are reverential and loving, as well as stories that are sad and clouded by yearning, loss, and regret Offers a compelling portrait of the diverse range of beliefs and experiences related to what is the most powerful and complex of human relationships Describes universal experiences that everyone can relate to, no matter your age, gender, or parenting status Written as a keepsake book that can be thoughtful gift for someone special in your life, This I Believe: On Motherhood feels like flipping through a family photo album, each page offering another richly detailed snapshot of daily life from the delivery room to the deathbed.
Introduction 1 Evolution 6 lauren leblanc Do What You Have to Do 9 kimann schultz Grabbing the Baton 12 julie sellers You Can’t Always Get What You Want 15 kate searle Visitor at the Table 18 maya christobel The Power of Parenthood 21 andrea coleman Call Your Mother 24 suzanne biemiller Fighting for Motherland 27 susan monas My Mother’s Gifts 30 alizon kiel Monster Juice 33 lisa tucker mcelroy Tell the Children 37 patty dann The Comfort in Rituals 40 carol lathrop The Simple Joys of Life 43 kris hansen The Buddha Bean 46 beth crawford The Bond Between Mother and Child 49 beth beery On the Same Page 52 robin fitzgerald The Real Measure of a Life Well Lived 55 annie azzariti The Courage of One Woman 58 lien pham The Juice Box Mom 61 candance gordon The Wisdom of Children 64 patricia battaglia The Gravity of Love 67 eleanor vincent A Bountiful Harvest 70 kathrine leone wright It Takes a Mother’s Love 73 bruce rankin A Matter of One’s Perspective 77 josephine guido Putting Myself First 80 sheri weinberg Listen to Your Mother-in-Law 83 judi russell A Mother’s Love 86 jennifer smith I Can Make Time 89 lily llamzon darais Our Children 92 haydeh takasugi Being Yourself 95 carolyn williamson We Are Optimists 98 angela west Hope Dished Out in Plenty 101 david e. cowen Saviors 104 lisa holmes Raising Kane 107 shannon blady Mom’s Everyday Advice 110 lea cassel matthews Mother and Me 113 jamie lemke-barrand Considering Adoption 116 susie m. green The Eternal Sunshine 119 traci higgins Don’t Tell Me How Rocky the Sea Is—Just Bring in the Ship 122 christine jarvis Simple Saturdays 125 stefanie wass Memories of Lessons Learned 128 mary lou hurley A Parent at Home 131 lisa crystal Expect to Have Enough 134 jodi ackerman frank The Transformative Power of Letting Go 137 mary lacy porter My Mother Is Beautiful 140 kelsey morgan The Gift 143 keri freeburg My Mother’s Eggplant 146 vijaya bodach Dancing to the Music 149 amanda joseph-anderson The Flaw-Free Body 152 kikki short Some Things to Know About Your Mother 155 anne donahue A Sacred Gift 158 alice roche cody Motherhood Is Real 161 wendy lawrence Miracle from Within 164 geeta maker-clark, md The Essential Gift of Childhood 167 marla rose Heaven Is Now 170 amy miller Words Can Heal the Heart of a Mother 173 lynda sentz The Second-Hardest Job 176 tina boscha Bessie Mae: Nobody Famous 179 michael taylor Pieces of Me 182 kimberly trevisani Am I Doing This Right? 185 jeana lee tahnk appendix How to Write Your Own This I Believe Essay 189 Acknowledgments 191
“These heartwarming and heart-rending essays will all but wrench the knowing tears from a mother’s eyes, and from quite a few children as well... Throughout, the authors tell fascinating stories to illuminate the importance of their own mothers in ways to which we can all relate.”—Scott Coffman, Louisville Courier-Journal
Dan Gediman is executive director of This I Believe, Inc., a not-for-profit organization that engages people in writing and sharing essays describing the core values that guide their daily lives. These short statements of belief have been featured on public radio since 2005. Gediman is coeditor of the New York Times best seller This I Believe, as well as several other books in the series, including This I Believe: On Fatherhood. John Gregory is editorial director and Mary Jo Gediman is outreach director of This I Believe, Inc.
This I Believe: On Motherhood From the popular radio series This I Believe comes this inspirational compilation of original essays on what one writer has called the "definitive relationship"—motherhood. It is a relationship filled with love and heartbreak, pride and rebellion, advice not taken, and dreams realized. A mother can be a cheerleader, a teacher, a breadwinner, an eternal optimist, and the safe harbor from life's many storms. This collection tells the personal stories of sixty essayists who share, in intimate terms, what motherhood means to them, exploring the unique bond that can be at once painful, loving, constructive, and nurturing With rare candor, old and young children, biological mothers, stepmothers, and adoptive mothers all offer their perspectives. These essayists remind us that mothers may not always share our opinion or approve of all our actions, but they believe in us—and we believe in them, even if we aren't always able to show or say it. Written as a keepsake book that can be a thoughtful gift for someone special in your life, This I Believe: On Motherhood offers a compelling portrait of the diverse range of experiences and beliefs related to the mother-child relationship. With personal insights and inspiration, this collection makes a wonderful gift for longtime mothers, new mothers, and mothers-to-be. To read more essays and submit your own, please visit www.thisibelieve.org.
Praise For This I Believe: On Motherhood "It is a one-of-a-kind connection. The mother-child bond is not necessarily a product of the birth process. It is a product of love and caring, time and commitment, patience and teaching, enjoying the good times and working through the hard times." —Beth Beery "I believe in calling your mother. No matter where you are, no matter what you are doing, a phone call to your mother will make the world seem less daunting and help you feel stronger." —Suzanne Biemiller "I did not give birth to Trenton, but I love him as a mother would. I believe that being a mother is more than biology; being a mother is a state of mind." —Jennifer Smith "When my daughter was born, one of my many fears was that raising a child with Down syndrome would diminish my experience of parenthood, that this would be a less joyful kind of mothering. It is not." —Beth Crawford "There are few things that have been around since the beginning of time. Birth is the beginning of time. For me, it is a great metaphor for all that is still mysterious and magnificent in the world." —Geeta Maker-Clark, MD
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