“It’s real!”


Molly, our wonderful speech therapist (I write about her in Chapter 12), sent me an email titled, “It’s real!” after seeing my book on a bookshelf in Waldenbooks.  (I still haven’t seen the book yet, which to me is both funny and perfect.  I mean, I already know how it all turns out, I suppose there’s no rush…)

One of the things Molly helped me with was the idea of Total Communication.  It took me many attempts before I understood what she meant.  I’d say,”Ummm, so could you tell me about why we’re doing sign language, again?” or, “We do this with the toothbrush, because, well, why?” 

So in the first draft of the book, I had Molly SPEAKING IN ALL CAPITAL LETTERS.  If you know a speech therapist, you know why I did it this way.  Theirs is a very deliberate, very clear diction, and I’d never heard anything like it before.  But the all-caps made it seem as if Molly were yelling, and she never yells (not even at me for my 1,000 questions) so in the final version of the book, we changed it to italics.  When Molly does her speech therapy talk, she speaks in italics.  And she taught me, so I do it too.

In other matters, this week marks the beginning of the MotherTalk Blog Book Tour.  There are new links to a Reader’s Guide, and my Backstory feature, and there will be more links appearing a few times each day throughout the week.  I’ll be reading the reviews, and commenting on them, and posting additional thoughts here at Pinwheels, too.

And finally, what’s a party without prizes?  I’d considered giving away copies of my book, but so many of you already have purchased it (thank you!) and really, by the end of this tour you’ll all be sick of me.  So I have 5 gift certificates to Amazon.com ($20) to give away instead, as my way of saying thanks for sticking with me.  (Just leave your name in the comments, and I’ll choose one winner at the end of each day.)

 Today’s Reviews

Aka Monty at The Daily Bitch has spent time in the NICU, and my book brought her right back to those days, and the complicated feelings such circumstances create, including anger and even shame.  She writes with the heart and passion of a woman who has lived through a similar experience, and her review alternates between quotes from my book and sections of her own words, weaving our two stories together into something familiar, yet also completely new. 

Michelle at Big Blueberry Eyes related to many of the feelings in the book–the heavier ones regarding the diagnosis, and the lighter ones about evaluations and my questioning the value of a skill called “the poke.”  She writes, “This is an amazingly powerful story of love, hope, and motherhood. Anyone would enjoy this book -whether you’re dealing with a diagnosis (Down syndrome, or otherwise) or not. It’s a story that will touch you, and one you won’t soon forget.”  I’ve been a longtime reader of her blog and I couldn’t love Kayla more, so Michelle’s endorsement means the world to me.  And she has copies of the book to share!  4 winners will be selected Monday; go to her blog to enter.

Claudia of The Practical Vampire Slayer says I’m beautiful and compares my writing to John Steinbeck’s:  full disclosure, Claudia is the amazing friend who gives me prescient advice all throughout my book.  She’s biased!  But who isn’t?  I think she’s wonderful, too.


43 thoughts on ““It’s real!”

  1. Such terrific news! I’m looking forward to reading it, and have been for some time. You and your blog are mentioned on my blog, btw. I have a feeling I’ll be featuring you again once I’ve got my hands on a copy of Road Map! Congratulations from Denver!! K.

  2. Thank you for your kind words! And most of all, thank you for this book, and for expressing all the parts of you so well. You’re so courageous and I’m honored to have been chosen as part of the blog tour. 🙂

  3. Congratulations, Jennifer! It was an absolute honor to be with you during the process of writing this book. I know it’s going to be an inspiration to so many people.

  4. Congratulations on the publishing! I think I would have been at Barnes and Noble on day 1 taking pictures as they stocked the shelf with the book! LOL! Please enter me in your giveaway and thanks for the generosity.

  5. Congratulations, congratulations, congratulations! Can’t wait until my book arrives in the mail.

    Also, when I read this entry I got that emotionally bubbly feeling in my chest, the one that makes me want to cry both happy and sad tears because I get it, I really do get it, when you described the way Avery’s speech therapist speaks and how she taught you to speak the same way. Oh, I really do understand because I also speak the same way.

  6. Jennifer, I’m Molly’s cousin, and I have to tell you how excited she was when we found your book sitting so proudly on the bookshelf at Waldenbooks. We both stood right there and read chapter 12. I plan to read the book in the very near future. Congratulations on your publication.

  7. I couldn’t get to sleep last night trying to figure out which of my three lucky friends I was going to buy your book for. I figure I can afford 3 copies for now, and I think, “Mom for sure,” “Julia and her husband Tim for sure,” and “Janice D. for sure.” And then I think of about 20 other people who really should have it, too. Guess I’m going to have to have a bake sale so I can buy RTH for everyone I know.

  8. what a great community you have cheering you on! i’m happy to join in… congratulatons 🙂 there will definitely be a copy of that book in switzerland one way or another.

  9. So exciting! I just read the back story of the photo on the front of the book. I love the photo before I read the history and now, even more. I LOVE photos and that is unbelievable that the moment was so perfectly captured! Best of luck~Leslee

  10. I’m so happy for you! Congrats on getting your 4th “baby” published 🙂 I finally got my review up…I know I didn’t do it justice, hard to think and type when Lucas is only cat-napping! It’s a wonderful book and you should be proud!

  11. Congratulations. 🙂 Michelle announced this over at her blog and this such wonderful news. If I win I promise to put the $5 towards a copy as I would like to read it and I’m not sure when the library will have a copy.

  12. SO proud of you!!! And hey, *I* have that same ST!! Her enunciation cracks me up, God love her.
    I would love to get my hands on a copy of this book, and then blog about it.

  13. Jennifer, this is amazing and I am so happy for you (you don’t have to put me in the drawing, let someone else win…) I hope Amazon starts shipping those pre-orders soon!!! I can’t wait to read.

  14. I just ordered my copy of your book the other day and I just got an email telling me that it’s been shipped! I can’t wait to read it!

    Do I get it autographed at the NDSC convention?? LOL! Are you still planning on speaking at it? I saw your name on the list of speakers, I hope we’ll be able to finally meet eachother! Talk to you later!

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