One of the must read books on motherhood - "Mother Shock: Tales of the First Year and Beyond" by Andrea J. Buchanan discusses the anxiety and thrill of new motherhood and the comical after years of parenting. By mother shock, the author means the utter state of confusion and chaos experienced by new parents that can be depicted as the clash between expectation and result, the difference between theory and reality. The author was pregnant with her second child when she penned down this book. She maintains that motherhood is a new state of being, a new responsibility, a new conception of oneself and a delegation of domestic duties. Buchanan, in her book, tries to detail the difficult yet rewarding course of becoming a mother. Spanning over a period of three years, this book is more of an amusing ruminations of motherhood. Dealing with motherhood, its anxiety and ecstasy, "Mother Shock" would be a perfect Mother's Day gift to your mom.
In "Mother Shock," Buchanan relates the initial stages of parenting and motherhood when life is no longer divided into day and night, when the immediacy of motherhood leaves you struggling for time for yourself. It is surely chaotic and confusing, but nonetheless hilarious. Hormonal imbalance, physical exhaustion, and sleep deprivation during this stage can topple the equilibrium of any woman. All aspects of being a mother to a newborn child have been captured in the 30 essays compiled in the book. Through her essays, the author takes across a hectic, nevertheless, a fascinating journey of early motherhood stages. Once you read her book, you start understanding the language and the rules of the land.
Buchanan was carrying her second child when she attempted "Mother Shock." She says that "One of the things that helped me prepare was the fact that I was actually writing "Mother Shock" when I was pregnant with my second -- writing about the "shock" of new motherhood reminded me that there is a learning curve to parenting, and revisiting that time in my life did, I think, help prepare me for what was coming next." She talked to other mothers who mothered two children and listened to their experience of transforming from being the mother of one kid to the mother of two. Proactively, she consulted with a post-partum counselor before giving birth to her baby to avoid any chances of post-partum depression or in her own words, she prepared for the worst-case post-partum scenario. Though she was not experiencing it first-hand as she had her first experience of motherhood to guide her, she wanted to make her second experience a bit easier.
This book, which is a collage of short essays written over a period, is an ideal book for mothers who are hard pressed for personal time. Though motherhood provides you with extremely pleasant experience, it is also an exercise in resistance. This classic approach of elaborating both emotional and pragmatic confrontations of motherhood, this book takes you across a voyage down all the aspects of maternity. In this book, she tells her readers, especially the expected mothers that it is impossible to know "what to expect when you're expecting." Though unfortunate, it is a fact that not all pregnancies end up in beautiful babies, some cases are extremely ill fated to be terminated almost as soon as they begin. Putting light to various aspects of the wonderful transformation of an ordinary women to much blessed motherhood, the writer tells that "it is much, much easier (an a lot more blissful) to imagine being a mother than it is to actually be one -- and that the perfect moments of motherhood are subtle, rare, and almost never bear any resemblance to the pictures we carry around in our heads."
Thus, analyzing the positive and negative aspects associated with pregnancy, childbirth and motherhood, this book is a must-read, especially for all mothers. It can be an excellent choice for a Mother's Day gift as it awakens the mother in a woman. And, at the same time, it leaves a pleasant aftertaste in the reader's mind.
"Mother Shock: Tales from the First and Beyond" is a compilation of 30 essays on the initial stages of Parenting by Andrea Buchanan.