It’s the last day of the official MotherTalk book blog tour.
When it began two weeks ago, I likened it to a virtual party, which turned out to be a good way to think of it: I reconnected with old friends, and made new ones. A few people I’d hoped would come couldn’t make it, for one reason or another. Like any party, there were the guests who arrived, criticised the food, and left early. And despite all the planning, there were the inevitable mishaps along the way (I still don’t have my books!) and slight miscalculations (we ran out of dip, but we still have all these carrot sticks…)
As it comes to a close, I’m feeling that familiar happy/sad feeling that I get at the end of every big event in my life. I’m tired and wound-up at the same time. I’m grateful for the quiet, but even before the last guest leaves, I miss everyone.
Someone has done the dishes and put the garbage in bags. Someone else has pinched out the candles and gathered them in the center of the table. Another someone has straightened the couch cushions and stacked the leftover plastic cups and paper plates in the kitchen, to save for another time.
All this help; I couldn’t have done it without help.
I’m thinking of the woman who taught herself to post an image on her blog, so that she could put up one of my book. Or the women with new babies at home, who made time to read and write about my story. Or the ones who read quickly, so they could pass my book to others. The women who sent invitations and gave out books. The ones who were shy, who read quietly and followed along; and the ones who carried the conversation, jumping in to add their thoughts and feelings and experiences.
And I’ll say what I whisper to each friend leaving my house: Safe travels. Be well. Keep in touch.
Cathy of Ethan and Lauren remembers a time from her own life, when she reached out to another mother of a child with Down syndrome, and how the experience was healing for her. She feels Road Map to Holland is the same: one mother reaching out to another. She writes, “This was one of those life-changing books for me, of which I can only count a few. I encourage everyone to read it, whether you have had a child with special needs or not. It is a beautiful story in its entirety, a testament that sorrow indeed carves out a greater space for happiness.”
Christine at Mothering by the Seat of My Pants is reading slowly, taking time to digest the details of my story, so that she can gain insight into her own. She says, “It has been comforting, and at times cathartic to share in her journey, a journey that she shares with such refreshing honesty.”
So a Blonde Walks Into a Review shares how prenatal diagnosis touched her own family; while reading my book, her sister-in-law received the results of her prenatal screening. She writes, “I wish every single woman who is faced with this possible diagnosis be given this book to read. It is honest, gripping, and raw, and a testimony to the boundless love a mother can have for her child.” She related to me feeling as if I needed a mother’s support van, and notes that in a sense, my book is just such a thing.
Reading my book brought Jessica of Loving Sophia back to her daughter’s baby days, and this time, she is able to savor the good memories. She says, “That’s the great thing about memories, all of the negativity and unease kind of settles to the bottom like sediment and all the best parts rise to the surface.” She related to the cover photo, and she too has felt similar emotions all at once. She writes, “If you are a mom expecting a baby with Down syndrome, throw away all those black and white statistics the doctor gave you and instead read a true account of the realities of being touched by Down syndrome.”