Being a mum has never been an easy journey, but for several reasons, motherhood becomes harder in midlife. Whether it’s because you’ve waited for so long before having a child and are now in your 50s dealing with his or her first tantrums and a lack of energy, or you’re busy navigating your teen-agers dilemmas as well as caring for your old parents or experiencing the so-called “empty nest syndrome“, there’s no doubt you need a break once in a while to reconnect with your inner soul.
Thankfully, there are some empowering books, written from the perspective of other sleep-deprived women, that can help us to see everything from a different angle.
Here are our top choices.
Are you an imperfect, trying-her-best mom? If you’re overreading parenting advice, The Magic of Motherhood should be your next read. Motherhood can often feel overwhelming and isolating. Your feelings swing between joy and uncertainty, intense love and anxiety, laughter and tears. Ashlee Gadd and the writers behind the popular blog Coffee + Crumbs have written a beautiful reminder of your identity, both as a woman and a mother. The Magic of Motherhood is a curated collection of honest stories weaving together the love, joy, and magnificent heartache of motherhood. Instead of offering advice, the writers offer something even better: their hearts. You’ll read essays about identity, adoption, body image, miscarriage, friendship, faith, and more.
This is the eagerly anticipated second essay collection from Jessi Klein, author of the acclaimed New York Times bestselling debut “You’ll Grow Out of It“. In this new book, she hilariously explores the cultural myths and impossible expectations around motherhood as well as the humiliations, poignancies, and possibilities of midlife.
From “Listening to Beyoncé in the Parking Lot of Party City,” to “Your Husband Will Remarry Five Minutes After You Die,” Klein depicts this stage of life in all its cruel ironies, joyous moments, and bittersweetness.
Journalist Amy Westervelt‘s book looks at American history through the lens of motherhood and shifting norms around what is expected of women who chose to become mothers. From maternity leave policies to gender-based double standards, mothers in the U.S. today have to deal with hurdles on top of the inherently stressful process of raising a child. In addition to examining how we got here, she charts a path forward, proposing ideas from the past worth reviving and new models we desperately need.
- From Mom to Me Again: How I Survived My First Empty-Nest Year and Reinvented the Rest of My Life by Melissa Shultz
Part memoir and part self-help, From Mom to Me Again shares the struggles Melissa Shultz experienced when her children left home. Funny, comforting, and practical, this book tells not only her personal story but also provides valuable advice for readers preparing to send their children off into the world. She shows women that while they’ll always be mothers, it’s time for them to take centre stage in their own lives once again and embrace this new stage, in both their personal lives and their professional careers.
Do you have any other books to recommend? Please share your favourites with our CrunchyTales Midlife Rebooting Facebook group.