*** NOW A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER ***
Maci Bookout was just a normal, slightly overachieving high school girl in Chattanooga, Tennessee. But then she got pregnant, and everything turned upside down. Even as she rose to fame on MTV's hit series Teen Mom, Maci was struggling to balance life as a single teen mom with her own hopes and dreams...all while honoring her own sense of independence.
This is the true story of how she took charge of the unexpected to build a life for herself and her son Bentley, and managed not to go crazy in the process. Because sometimes growing up is an act of will...and Maci's will is bulletproof.
Tia Mowry’s 800,000+ Twitter followers know that she tells it like it is. Now, in a pregnancy guide like no other, Tia leaves no topic off-limits while helping expectant moms stay empowered, pampered, and laughing out loud. From sex during the third trimester to pimped-out strollers, Oh, Baby! reveals what to really expect on that nine-month road to the delivery room.
Sharing her personal experience with cravings (she couldn’t have done it without sourdough bread and Funyuns); maternity clothes (Tia prefers black, with sequins); panty liners (memorize that aisle at the drugstore); vagina exercises (just say No!); and hiding your bump from your coworkers (tricky for Tia, since her character on The Game was in lingerie half the time), the maternity maven also discusses Ask the OB Q&A’s she posed to her own ob-gyn, along with dozens of tried-and-true tips for combating morning sickness, fear, and everything else that might overshadow a radiant glow.
From the time she started showing to the moment she welcomed her new baby boy, Cree Taylor, into the world, Tia was in the spotlight, from Access Hollywood to every glossy magazine and countless online sites. Yet she stayed down-to-earth throughout it all. Keeping it real, Oh, Baby! helps every mommy-to-be stay stylish, maintain her dignity, and trust her gut (no matter how big it gets).
At fourteen, Emma is just a child herself – and one who’s never been properly mothered. She has been in foster care several times already and when she discovered she was pregnant, and refused to have an abortion, her mother threw her out of the house.
Casey and her family instantly form a strong bond with Emma’s baby Roman, but dealing with Emma’s behaviour and constant lack of responsibility is a far tougher challenge. And before long Casey finds she’s doing something she never thought she would – covering up for Emma’s shortcomings as she allows her personal involvement to colour her judgement.
But the more Casey gets to know Emma the more she’s convinced that with the right help and guidance this lonely and unsupported girl can become a good mother to her gorgeous little boy. That’s what makes it even harder when Casey and her family have to make a stark choice: to hold on to Emma or look after Roman; to help a teenage girl desperate to turn her life around, or offer an innocent baby a safe home and much-needed good start in life.
From the moment a mother holds her newborn son, his eyes tell her that she is his world. But often, as he grows up, the boy who needs her simultaneously pushes her away. Calling upon thirty years of experience as a pediatrician, Meg Meeker, M.D., a highly sought after national speaker, assistant professor of clinical medicine, and mother of four, shares the secrets that every mother needs to know in order to strengthen—or rebuild—her relationship with her son.
Boys today face unique challenges and pressures, and the burden on mothers to guide their boys through them can feel overwhelming. This empowering book offers a road map to help mothers find the strength and confidence to raise extraordinary sons by providing encouragement, education, and practical advice about
• the need for mothers to exercise courage and be bolder and more confident about advising and directing their boys
• the crucial role mothers play in expressing love to sons in healthy ways so they learn to respect and appreciate women as they grow up
• the importance of teaching sons about the values of hard work, community service, and a well-developed inner life
• the natural traps mothers of boys often fall into—and how to avoid them
• the need for a mother to heal her own wounds with the men in her life so she can raise her son without baggage and limitations
• the best ways to survive the moments when the going gets tough and a mom’s natural ways of communicating—talking, analyzing, exploring—only fuel the fire
When a mother holds her baby boy for the first time, she also instinctively knows something else: If she does her job right and raises her son with self-esteem, support, and wisdom, he will become the man she knows he was meant to be.
Praise for Strong Mothers, Strong Sons
“Solid, practical advice for women on how to properly nurture their sons.”—Kirkus Reviews
Praise for Meg Meeker, M.D.
Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters
“Dr. Meeker’s conclusions are timely, relevant, and often deeply moving. No one interested in what girls experience growing up in our culture today—and the impact that parents, especially fathers, have on the experience—can afford to miss reading this book.”—Armand M. Nicholi, Jr., M.D., professor of psychiatry, Harvard Medical School
“Reassuring and challenging . . . a helpful road map for concerned fathers [that] tackles difficult issues.”—National Review
Boys Should Be Boys
“If you want to raise a boy you’ll be proud of, read Boys Should Be Boys.”—Dave Ramsey, author of The Total Money Makeover
“Filled with inspirational vignettes, Boys Should Be Boys empowers parents to stay involved and protect their sons’ innocence. It’s a wonderfully written and eye-opening book—a must-read.”—Neil Bernstein, Ph.D., author of There When He Needs You
The 10 Habits of Happy Mothers
“Offers practical ways to help you let go of ‘mom guilt’ in order to become a happier, healthier woman.”—Parent & Child
“Just about any mom, or dad, can find useful wisdom in this book.”—Associated Press
From the Trade Paperback edition.
The Award-Winning Resource Recommended by Experts & Loved by Parents
Parents love this book because it puts them in control by explaining a wide range of options, information, and questions to ask, so parents can find what works best for their health situation, personal goals, and priorities.
Experts love this book because it’s based on the latest medical research and recommendations from leading health organizations. It’s practical—rooted in the real-life experiences of new families. The five authors bring a combined total of 150 years of experience working with expectant and new families as educators, nurses, counselors, doulas, physical therapists, and lactation consultants. They have attended hundreds of births, heard thousands of birth stories, and assisted innumerable new parents in adapting to their new lives. Not only that, the authors have a combined total of 12 children and 12 grandchildren. All of this experience allows them to write with compassion, understanding, and wisdom based on what really works in the real-world of parenting.
The companion website offers even more details on select subjects, including lists of all the best resources on each topic and worksheets to guide parents’ decision-making process. The website also includes a bonus chapter on pre-conception, which provides ways to improve your health and fertility before pregnancy begins.
The inspiring and hilarious instant New York Times bestseller from the beloved writer, speaker, activist, and founder of Momastery.com whose new memoir Love Warrior is an Oprah’s Book Club selection.
Glennon Doyle Melton’s hilarious and poignant reflections on our universal (yet often secret) experiences have inspired a social movement by reminding women that they’re not alone. In Carry On, Warrior, she shares her personal story in moving, refreshing, and laugh-out-loud-funny new essays and some of the best-loved material from Momastery.com. Her writing invites us to believe in ourselves, to be brave and kind, to let go of the idea of perfection, and to stop making motherhood, marriage, and friendship harder by pretending they’re not hard. In this one woman’s trying to love herself and others, readers will find a wise and witty friend who shows that we can build better lives in our hearts, homes, and communities.
Now the couple who brought you A Dad's Prayers for His Daughter turns to a mother's unique relationship with her son. They assure Mom that even if she isn't always sure what kind of support her son needs, God always knows. Providing specific prayers moms can use, along with stories from other moms about how God has answered their prayers for their sons, Rob and Joanna Teigen give women a strong foundation to build a lifelong habit of prayer for their sons. They also explain a little more about boys and what they need to learn growing up, including character, courage, self-control, forgiveness, and more, so a mom can pray for every area of her son's life.
New York Times bestselling author and widely known blogger, Rachel Macy Stafford, reveals nine habits that help you focus on investing in the most significant parts of your life. As your hands, heart, and eyes become open, you will experience a new sense of urgency—an urgency to live, love, dream, connect, create, forgive, and flourish despite the distractions of our culture. By following each daily Hands Free Declaration, you will be inspired to adopt mindful daily practices and new thought-processes that will help you:
• Make meaningful, lasting human connections despite the busyness of everyday life.
• Live in the now despite that inner nudge pushing you out of the moment toward perfection and productivity.
• Protect your most sacred relationships, as well as your values, beliefs, health, and happiness, despite the latent dangers of technology and social media.
• Pursue the passions of your heart without sacrificing your job or your daily responsibilities.
• Evaluate your daily choices to insure you are investing in a life that matters to you.
With a Hands Free Life perspective, you will have the power to look back and see you didn’t just manage life, you actually lived it—and lived it well.
Covering areas such as worry, marriage, priorities, money, and the trap of comparison, this lively Bible teacher brings Jesus's message alive in a format geared to the short moments moms have that can be allotted to reflection. This is a devotional for the woman inside the mom--the Bible student, the learner, the world-changer.
No one knows this better than Elaine Brye, an “Army brat” turned military wife and the mother of four officers—one each in the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps. For more than a decade she's endured countless teary goodbyes, empty chairs at Thanksgiving dinners, and sleepless hours waiting for phone calls in the night. She's navigated the complicated tangle of emotions—pride, worry, fear, hope, and deep, enduring love—that are part and parcel of life as a military mother.
In Be Safe, Love Mom Elaine braids together her own personal experiences with those of fellow parents she's met along the way. She offers gentle guidance and hard-earned wisdom on topics ranging from that first anxious goodbye to surrendering all control of your child, from finding comfort in the support of the military community and the healing power of faith to coping with the enormous sacrifices life as a military mother requires. Readers looking for encouragement and hard-to-come-by information as they travel the challenging road of having a child in uniform will find Elaine a wise and trusted friend, and Be Safe, Love Mom an essential handbook to membership in a strong and special sisterhood.
From the author of The Middle Place comes a new memoir that examines the bond—sometimes nourishing, sometimes exasperating, occasionally divine—between mothers and daughters.
When Kelly Corrigan was in high school, her mother neatly summarized the family dynamic as “Your father’s the glitter but I’m the glue.” This meant nothing to Kelly, who left childhood sure that her mom—with her inviolable commandments and proud stoicism—would be nothing more than background chatter for the rest of Kelly’s life, which she was carefully orienting toward adventure. After college, armed with a backpack, her personal mission statement, and a wad of traveler’s checks, she took off for Australia to see things and do things and Become Interesting.
But it didn’t turn out the way she pictured it. In a matter of months, her savings shot, she had a choice: get a job or go home. That’s how Kelly met John Tanner, a newly widowed father of two looking for a live-in nanny. They chatted for an hour, discussed timing and pay, and a week later, Kelly moved in. And there, in that house in a suburb north of Sydney, 10,000 miles from the house where she was raised, her mother’s voice was suddenly everywhere, nudging and advising, cautioning and directing, escorting her through a terrain as foreign as any she had ever trekked. Every day she spent with the Tanner kids was a day spent reconsidering her relationship with her mother, turning it over in her hands like a shell, straining to hear whatever messages might be trapped in its spiral.
This is a book about the difference between travel and life experience, stepping out and stepping up, fathers and mothers. But mostly it’s about who you admire and why, and how that changes over time.
Praise for Glitter and Glue
“I loved this book, I was moved by this book, and now I will share this book with my own mother—along with my renewed appreciation for certain debts of love that can never be repaid.”—Elizabeth Gilbert, New York Times bestselling author of Eat, Pray, Love
“Kelly Corrigan’s thoughtful and beautifully rendered meditation invites readers to reflect on their own launchings and homecomings. I accepted the invitation and learned things about myself. You will, too. Isn’t that why we read?”—Wally Lamb, New York Times bestselling author of We Are Water
“Kelly Corrigan is no stranger to mining the depths of her heart. . . . [In] Glitter and Glue,Corrigan turns the microscope on her relationship with her own mother. . . . Through her own experience of caring for children, she begins, for the first time, to appreciate the complex woman who raised her.”—O: The Oprah Magazine
“Corrigan [is] a lively, nimble cheerleader for the joys of family.”—People
“[A] funny, sparkling memoir.”—More
“Corrigan writes with warmth and delicate humor.”—The Washington Post
“[An] irresistible cocktail of lyrical writing and solid, useful insight.”—San Francisco Chronicle
“In this endearing, funny, and thought-provoking memoir, Kelly Corrigan’s memories of long-ago adventures illuminate the changing relationships between mothers and children—as well as everything else that really matters.”—Gretchen Rubin, New York Times bestselling author of The Happiness Project
From the Trade Paperback edition.
I get it, Momma. I totally get it.
Every day you wake up and try your very best. You love, give, and pour out your life for the ones who call you Momma. But no matter how much you offer, there are still days you feel as though you come up short. You worry, Am I loving these babies enough? Is this ever going to get easier? Why does it seem like I am the only one who cannot balance it all?
Sometimes, we just need hope (and maybe a long uninterrupted nap). We need someone to help tune our hearts to the voice of the Father and to remind us that He has not forgotten about us.
In Hope Unfolding, Becky Thompson is a friend who reminds you that you aren’t alone, and that God is still writing your story. She guides you to encounter the Truth of God’s presence that not only fuels you with strength, but also a fresh confidence. And beyond gaining faith that tomorrow could be different, you find hope and purpose where you are standing today.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
In a culture that idealizes motherhood, it’s scary to confess that, in your house, being a mother is beautiful and dirty and joyful and frustrating all at once. Admitting that it’s not easy doesn’t make you a bad mom; at least, it shouldn’t.
If I can’t survive my daughter as a toddler, how the hell am I going to get through the teenage years?
When Jill Smokler was first home with her small children, she thought her blog would be something to keep friends and family updated. To her surprise, she hit a chord in the hearts of mothers everywhere.
I end up doing my son’s homework. It’s wrong, but so much easier.
Total strangers were contributing their views on that strange reality called motherhood. As other women shared their stories, Jill realized she wasn’t alone in her feelings of exhaustion and imperfection.
My eighteen month old still can’t say “Mommy” but used the word “shit” in perfect context.
But she sensed her readers were still holding back, so decided to start an anonymous confessional, a place where real moms could leave their most honest thoughts without fearing condemnation.
I pretend to be happy but I cry every night in the shower.
The reactions were amazing: some sad, some pee-in-your-pants funny, some brutally honest. But they were real, not a commercial glamorization.
I clock out of motherhood at 8 P.M. and hide in the basement with my laptop and a beer.
If you’re already a fan, lock the bathroom door on your whining kids, run a bubble bath, and settle in. If you’ve not encountered Scary Mommy before, break out a glass of champagne as well, because you’ll be toasting your initiation into a select club.
I know why some animals eat their young.
In chapters that cover husbands (The Biggest Baby of Them All) to homework (Didn’t I Already Graduate?), Confessions of a Scary Mommy combines all-new essays from Jill with the best of the anonymous confessions.
Sometimes I wish my son was still little—then I hear kids screaming at the store.
As Jill says, “We like to paint motherhood as picture perfect. A newborn peacefully resting on his mother’s chest. A toddler taking tentative first steps into his mother’s loving arms. A mother fluffing her daughter’s prom dress. These moments are indeed miraculous and joyful; they can also be few and far between.” Of course you adore your kids. Of course you would lay down your life for them. But be honest now: Have you ever wondered what possessed you to sign up for the job of motherhood?
STOP! DO NOT OPEN THIS BOOK UNTIL YOU RECITE THESE VOWS!
I shall remember that no mother is perfect and my children will thrive because, and sometimes even in spite, of me.
I shall not preach to a fellow mother who has not asked my opinion. It’s none of my damn business.
I shall maintain a sense of humor about all things motherhood.
Newly pregnant and scared out of her mind, Jill Smokler lay on her gynecologist’s examination table and was told the biggest lie she’d ever heard in her life: “Motherhood is the most natural thing in the world.”
Instead of quelling her nerves like that well intentioned nurse hoped to, Jill was instead set up for future of questioning exactly what DNA strand she was missing that made the whole motherhood experience feel less than natural to her. Wonderful? Yes. Miraculous? Of course. Worthwhile? Without a doubt. But natural? Not so much.
Jill’s first memoir, the New York Times bestseller Confessions of a Scary Mommy, rocketed to national fame with its down and dirty details about life with her three precious bundles of joy. Now Jill returns with all-new essays debunking more than twenty pervasive myths about motherhood. She’s here to give you what few others will dare: The truth.
Surprised by Motherhood is Lisa-Jo’s story of becoming and being a mom, and in the process, discovering that all the “what to expect” and “how to” books in the world can never truly prepare you for the sheer exhilaration, joy, and terrifying love that accompanies motherhood.
Set partly in South Africa and partly in the US (with a slight detour to Ukraine along the way), Surprised by Motherhood is a poignant memoir of one woman’s dawning realization that being a mom isn’t about being perfect—it’s about being present.
This is the type of insight Melanie Shankle offers in this quirky memoir of motherhood.
Written in the familiar, stream-of-consciousness style of her blog, Big Mama, Sparkly Green Earrings is a heartwarming and hilarious look at motherhood from someone who is still trying to figure it all out. Filled with personal stories—from the decision to become a mother to the heartbreak of miscarriage and ultimately, to the joy of raising a baby and living to tell about it—Sparkly Green Earrings will make you feel like you’re sitting across the table from your best friend. A must-read for anyone who’s ever had a child or even thought about it.
Praise for Sh*tty Mom:
“A totally hilarious and uncensored look at some of the impossible situations we mothers find ourselves in.” —TheBump.com
“Smartly, brashly, nearly criminally funny. It also—no small thing—carries a powerful message to all parents, but especially moms, that distilled to its essence is this: chill.” —Time.com
“As the attachment parenting craze has hit a zenith in American culture, four very funny moms—comedy writers, TV producers, and a novelist—blast open a long-locked safe filled with frustrations faced by all modern mothers, with sympathetic and sharp humor. . . . The authors’ unfiltered candor is a welcome reminder for readers that they're not alone. . . .” —Publishers Weekly starred review
“Both funny and practical.” —Brooklyn Based.net
"Hilariously entertaining. A must-read survivor's guide for every mother!"
--Christy Turlington Burns, founder of Every Mother Counts
“Finally, Sh*tty Mom does for motherhood what Chelsea Handler does for female scatology. It’s a long overdue little burst of honesty from the supposed minority of mothers who are, in fact, not that maternal. . . . After a generation of supermoms one-upping each other in dead earnest on playgrounds and schoolyards, the emerging mass appeal of Sh*tty Mom is a welcome relief.” —The New York Observer
"Witty, wise, and wicked! With tongue planted firmly in cheek, these savvy moms dispense some much needed comic relief about raising kids in our crazy culture."?
--Dr. Harvey Karp, bestselling author of The Happiest Baby on the Block
“The most inappropriate parenting book I've ever read. Loved it. The perfect book for any mother who wants to laugh instead of cry at those cringe-worthy moments and the universal indignities we experience on a daily basis.”
--Jessica Seinfeld, bestselling cookbook author and founder of Baby Buggy
“An antidote to the hostage situation that is modern parenting…subversive, delicious, and spit-out-your-latte funny.”
--Pamela Druckerman, bestselling author of Bringing Up Bebe
“[Quindlen] serves up generous portions of her wise, commonsensical, irresistibly quotable take on life. . . . What Nora Ephron does for body image and Anne Lamott for spiritual neuroses, Quindlen achieves on the home front.”—NPR
In this irresistible memoir, Anna Quindlen writes about a woman’s life, from childhood memories to manic motherhood to middle age, using the events of her life to illuminate ours. Considering—and celebrating—everything from marriage, girlfriends, our mothers, parenting, faith, loss, to all the stuff in our closets, and more, Quindlen says for us here what we may wish we could have said ourselves. As she did in her beloved New York Times columns, and in A Short Guide to a Happy Life, Quindlen uses her past, present, and future to explore what matters most to women at different ages. Quindlen talks about
Marriage: “A safety net of small white lies can be the bedrock of a successful marriage. You wouldn’t believe how cheaply I can do a kitchen renovation.”
Girlfriends: “Ask any woman how she makes it through the day, and she may mention her calendar, her to-do lists, her babysitter. But if you push her on how she really makes it through her day, she will mention her girlfriends. ”
Our bodies: “I’ve finally recognized my body for what it is: a personality-delivery system, designed expressly to carry my character from place to place, now and in the years to come.”
Parenting: “Being a parent is not transactional. We do not get what we give. It is the ultimate pay-it-forward endeavor: We are good parents not so they will be loving enough to stay with us but so they will be strong enough to leave us.”
Candid, funny, and moving, Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake is filled with the sharp insights and revealing observations that have long confirmed Quindlen’s status as America’s laureate of real life.
“Classic Quindlen, at times witty, at times wise, and always of her time.”—The Miami Herald
“[A] pithy, get-real memoir.”—Booklist
Look for special features inside. Join the Random House Reader’s Circle for author chats and more.
When American journalist Pamela Druckerman had a baby in Paris, she didn't aspire to become a "French parent." But she noticed that French children slept through the night by two or three months old. They ate braised leeks. They played by themselves while their parents sipped coffee. And yet French kids were still boisterous, curious, and creative. Why? How?
With a notebook stashed in her diaper bag, Druckerman set out to investigate—and wound up sparking a national debate on parenting. Researched over three years and written in her warm, funny voice, Bringing Up Bébé is deeply wise, charmingly told, and destined to become a classic resource for American parents.
A bestselling book that is inspiring the nation: “We have written here about terrible things that we never wanted to think about again . . . Now we want the world to know: we survived, we are free, we love life.”
Two women kidnapped by infamous Cleveland school-bus driver Ariel Castro share the stories of their abductions, captivity, and dramatic escape
On May 6, 2013, Amanda Berry made headlines around the world when she fled a Cleveland home and called 911, saying: “Help me, I’m Amanda Berry. . . . I’ve been kidnapped, and I’ve been missing for ten years.”
A horrifying story rapidly unfolded. Ariel Castro, a local school bus driver, had separately lured Berry, Gina DeJesus, and Michelle Knight to his home, where he kept them chained. In the decade that followed, the three were raped, psychologically abused, and threatened with death. Berry had a daughter—Jocelyn—by their captor.
Drawing upon their recollections and the diary kept by Amanda Berry, Berry and Gina DeJesus describe a tale of unimaginable torment, and Pulitzer Prize–winning Washington Post reporters Mary Jordan and Kevin Sullivan interweave the events within Castro’s house with original reporting on efforts to find the missing girls. The full story behind the headlines—including details never previously released on Castro’s life and motivations—Hope is a harrowing yet inspiring chronicle of two women whose courage, ingenuity, and resourcefulness ultimately delivered them back to their lives and families.
From the Hardcover edition.
“A perfect book. I want to tell everyone, every mother, every daughter, to read it.” —Abigail Thomas, bestselling author of A Three Dog Life
For the first time in decades I’m remembering Mom, all of her--the wonderful and terrible things about her that I’ve cast out of my thoughts for so long. I’m still struggling to prevent these memories from erupting from their subterranean depths. Trying to hold back the flood. I can’t, not today. The levees break.
Thirty years after her death, Alice Eve Cohen’s mother appears to her, seemingly in the flesh, and continues to do so during the hardest year Alice has had to face: the year her youngest daughter needs a harrowing surgery, her eldest daughter decides to reunite with her birth mother, and Alice herself receives a daunting diagnosis. As it turns out, it’s entirely possible for the people we’ve lost to come back to us when we need them the most.
Although letting her mother back into her life is not an easy thing, Alice approaches it with humor, intelligence, and honesty. What she learns is that she must revisit her childhood and allow herself to be a daughter once more in order to take care of her own girls. Understanding and forgiving her mother’s parenting transgressions leads her to accept her own and to realize that she doesn’t have to be perfect to be a good mother.
“Alice Eve Cohen’s warm, witty, wise memoir is an elixir of love. It captures the struggles of every woman who ever wanted to be a better mother or daughter. Read it and weep, and laugh, and love.” —Nancy Bachrach, author of The Center of the Universe
“Funny, painful, absurd, and heartwarming . . . Alice’s struggle to accept her imperfect self is a loving message tomothers who struggle to live life with grace. A beautiful book.” —Julie Metz, New York Times bestselling author of Perfection
“Cohen navigates what was a perfect storm of a year . . . What she made of this year is a book so honest, so moving, and ultimately so wise that it is a privilege to take the journey with her.” —Abigail Thomas, bestselling author of A Three Dog Life
“I love, love, love this book. It’s so rich, so real, and so moving . . . An astonishingly wonderful book—I was enthralled.” —Caroline Leavitt, bestselling author of Pictures of You
“Compassionate, compelling, and told in luscious prose that practically begs you to sink in and linger, Cohen’s imaginative story and its fascinating characters will stay with you long after you’ve turned the last page.” —Jessie Sholl, author of Dirty Secret
Childbirth is one of the most significant events of any woman’s life—and for many, also a source of enormous anxiety and fear. In The Big Book of Birth renowned childbirth educator and Realbirth Center founder Erica Lyon offers an antidote to that fear with a comprehensive and up- to-date guide to childbirth. Drawing from more than a decade of teaching expecting parents what really to expect, Lyon fills the void that currently exists in childbirth literature, offering clear, current, objective advice on everything from choosing your doctor or midwife, to the realities of assisted and cesarean births, to the many different pain-coping options you can use during delivery and proven techniques that can help you relax and often speed along your labor.
The Big Book of Birth guides women through the four stages of labor, dispelling misconceptions and providing a wealth of objective information in a warm, welcoming, and well- organized format. A long-overdue resource, The Big Book of Birth gives expectant mothers the knowledge they need to approach childbirth with confidence and joy.
Don't worry, Mom. There's a good reason why your son perplexes you. He's the OPPOSITE sex! Boys really do think, communicate, and process the world differently than girls. But no matter your son's age, he needs you, and he needs you in not-so-apparent ways.
Drawing from her own experiences, as well as those from moms and sons from around the country, Cheri Fuller shares what makes boys and young men tick and how to become a more welcome influence at every stage in their lives. She answers all the top questions, including:
"How can I help my son (and me!) deal with his emotions in a healthy way?"
"School is such a struggle. How can I help him?"
"Our personalities are SO different. How can we get on the same page?"
"My son hardly says a thing. What can I do?"
"What are the best ways to instill good values?"
"How can I encourage a lasting faith in God?"
With page after page of use-it-today advice and encouraging stories, this book will help you steer your son toward becoming a caring, confident young man.
Includes Reflection Questions for Personal or Group Use
Great for understanding grandsons, too!
"Some mother-son relationships seem to add credence to the adage that 'men are from Mars, women are from Venus.' Even mothers who have a
close bond with their sons may think they harbor a complete stranger when their male offspring reach puberty. Fuller is a speaker and author, as well as mother of three (two boys and a girl) and grandmother of six. She lists specific activities that all sons need from their mothers, such as encouragement, communication, prayer, and confidence-building. She adds questions at each chapter's end to 'ponder, journal or discuss,' lending the book to both individual and group study. Recommended for the parenting section of any church library." --Church Libraries
It's an elemental, almost animalistic urge—the expectant mother's hunger for birth narratives. Bookstores are filled with month-by-month pregnancy manuals, but the shelves are virtually empty of artful, entertaining, unvarnished accounts of labor and delivery—the stories that new mothers need most.
Here is a book that transcends the limits of how-to guides and honors the act of childbirth in the twenty-first century. Eleanor Henderson and Anna Solomon have gathered true birth stories by women who have made self-expression their business, including Cheryl Strayed, Julia Glass, Lauren Groff, Dani Shapiro, and many other luminaries.
In Labor Day, you'll read about women determined to give birth naturally and others begging for epidurals; women who pushed for hours and women whose labors were over practically before they'd started; women giving birth to twins and to ten-pound babies. These women give birth in the hospital, at home, in bathtubs, and, yes, even in the car. Some revel in labor, some fear labor, some feel defeated by labor, some are fulfilled by it—and all are amazed by it. You will laugh, weep, squirm, perhaps groan in recognition, and undoubtedly gasp with surprise. And then you'll call every mother or mother-to-be that you know and say "You MUST read Labor Day."
Sarah Shun-lien Bynum
Lan Samantha Chang
Mary Beth Keane
Marie Myung-Ok Lee
Sarah A. Strickley
Rachel Jamison Webster
For Johanna Stein (writer/comedian/forward/slash/abuser and occasionally neurotic/immature/way-too-candid mom), parenting is an extreme sport. Her stories from the trenches may not always be shared experiences—Have you ever wondered if your baby's "soft spot" is like a delete key? Trained your preschooler for a zombie invasion? Accused a nearly nude stranger of being pregnant? Made sweet, bimonthly love to your spouse while your toddler serenaded you through the adjoining wall? Attempted to calm your screaming baby on an airplane with a hand puppet, only to have it lead to one of the most disgusting experiences of your life?—but they will always make you laugh.
So, no, this book won't teach you how to deal with nipple blisters or Oedipal complexes. But if you want to learn why you should never attempt to play a practical joke in the hospital delivery room, then you're in the right place.
Michelle was a young single mother when she was kidnapped by a local school bus driver named Ariel Castro. For more than a decade afterward, she endured unimaginable torture at the hand of her abductor. In 2003 Amanda Berry joined her in captivity, followed by Gina DeJesus in 2004. Their escape on May 6, 2013, made headlines around the world.
Barely out of her own tumultuous childhood, Michelle was estranged from her family and fighting for custody of her young son when she disappeared. Local police believed she had run away, so they removed her from the missing persons lists fifteen months after she vanished. Castro tormented her with these facts, reminding her that no one was looking for her, that the outside world had forgotten her. But Michelle would not be broken.
In Finding Me, Michelle will reveal the heartbreaking details of her story, including the thoughts and prayers that helped her find courage to endure her unimaginable circumstances and now build a life worth living. By sharing both her past and her efforts to create a future, Michelle becomes a voice for the voiceless and a powerful symbol of hope for the thousands of children and young adults who go missing every year.
Winner of the 2015 Christian Book Award® in the Inspiration category.
Even when her path seemed bleak, it was this unwavering faith that allowed her to follow her dreams, both professional and personal, and survive the hardest times in her life. Like so many women out there, Marie has struggled through years of being a single parent and a working parent, while juggling the need to be there for her children and still be there for her other “family,” the multitude of fans and followers who look up to her.
Through it all, Marie has turned to the person who helped her through every stage of her life and her career: her mother. Drawing on the wisdom that Olive Osmond imparted over the years, Marie weaves a rich, touching, and honest memoir about her life offstage and off-camera, where she took on her most important role: motherhood. Through her personal delights, dreams, downturns, and devastating tragedy, Marie offers insights on creating a strong family, raising happy and independent children and, especially, moving forward when it seems impossible to do so.
If you thought Tinseltown was tough...
Tori Spelling might have grown up with everything a girl could wish for, but these days she's just another suburban working mom...whose toddler regularly recognizes her in the pages of Us Weekly. Welcome to Mommywood, where the stars are two feet tall and your neighbors know who you are before you move in.
Like most parents, Tori wants her children to have the one thing she didn't have as a kid -- a normal family. On their hit Oxygen reality show, Tori & Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood, the starlet and her husband Dean McDermott regularly wrestle dirty diapers, host the neighborhood block party, and tackle temper tantrums on the red carpet. But when the cameras aren't rolling, Tori's still having awkward run-ins with a former 90210 costar at a laser tag birthday party, scooping rogue poo out of the kiddie pool on a resort vacation, and racing to win back her pre-baby body before the media starts calling her fat. For all her suburban fantasies, Tori Spelling is no June Cleaver.
With the same down-to-earth wit that made her entertaining memoir sTORI telling a #1 New York Times bestseller, Tori tells the hilarious and humbling stories of life as a mom in the limelight. From learning to be the kind of parent her own mother never was to revealing what it's like to raise a family while everyone is watching, Mommywood is an irresistible snapshot of celebrity parenthood that you won't get from the paparazzi.
In fiercely honest, surprisingly funny, and sometimes heartbreaking prose, Jesse’s mother, Marianne Leone, chronicles her transformation by the remarkable life and untimely death of her child. An unforgettable memoir of joy, grief, and triumph, Knowing Jesse unlocks the secret of unconditional love and speaks to all families who strive to do right by their children.
With a career, a boyfriend, and a loving family, Piper Kerman barely resembles the reckless young woman who delivered a suitcase of drug money ten years before. But that past has caught up with her. Convicted and sentenced to fifteen months at the infamous federal correctional facility in Danbury, Connecticut, the well-heeled Smith College alumna is now inmate #11187–424—one of the millions of people who disappear “down the rabbit hole” of the American penal system. From her first strip search to her final release, Kerman learns to navigate this strange world with its strictly enforced codes of behavior and arbitrary rules. She meets women from all walks of life, who surprise her with small tokens of generosity, hard words of wisdom, and simple acts of acceptance. Heartbreaking, hilarious, and at times enraging, Kerman’s story offers a rare look into the lives of women in prison—why it is we lock so many away and what happens to them when they’re there.
Praise for Orange Is the New Black
“Fascinating . . . The true subject of this unforgettable book is female bonding and the ties that even bars can’t unbind.”—People (four stars)
“I loved this book. It’s a story rich with humor, pathos, and redemption. What I did not expect from this memoir was the affection, compassion, and even reverence that Piper Kerman demonstrates for all the women she encountered while she was locked away in jail. I will never forget it.”—Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love
“This book is impossible to put down because [Kerman] could be you. Or your best friend. Or your daughter.”—Los Angeles Times
“Moving . . . transcends the memoir genre’s usual self-centeredness to explore how human beings can always surprise you.”—USA Today
“It’s a compelling awakening, and a harrowing one—both for the reader and for Kerman.”—Newsweek.com
Look for special features inside. Join the Random House Reader’s Circle for author chats and more.
If Life Is a Bowl of Cherries, What Am I Doing in the Pits? is Erma Bombeck’s timelessly witty look at the hidden side of married life. Motherhood captures one of the toughest jobs on earth with humor and heart. And The Grass Is Always Greener Over the Septic Tank is Bombeck’s take on the unforgiving frontier of American suburbia.
"[Larson] succeeds in providing a well-rounded portrait of a woman who, until now, has never been viewed in full."—Boston Globe
“A biography that chronicles her life with fresh details . . . By making Rosemary the central character, [Larson] has produced a valuable account of a mental health tragedy and an influential family’s belated efforts to make amends.” — New York Times Book Review
Joe and Rose Kennedy’s strikingly beautiful daughter Rosemary attended exclusive schools, was presented as a debutante to the queen of England, and traveled the world with her high-spirited sisters. Yet Rosemary was intellectually disabled, a secret fiercely guarded by her powerful and glamorous family.
In Rosemary, Kate Clifford Larson uses newly uncovered sources to bring Rosemary Kennedy’s story to light. Young Rosemary comes alive as a sweet, lively girl adored by her siblings. But Larson also reveals the often desperate and duplicitous arrangements the Kennedys made to keep her away from home as she became increasingly difficult in her early twenties, culminating in Joe’s decision to have Rosemary lobotomized at age twenty-three and the family’s complicity in keeping the secret. Only years later did the Kennedy siblings begin to understand what had happened to Rosemary, which inspired them to direct government attention and resources to the plight of the developmentally and mentally disabled, transforming the lives of millions.
“The forgotten Kennedy is forgotten no longer. Rosemary is a rare thing, a book about the Kennedys that has something new to say.” — Laurence Leamer, author of The Kennedy Women
“Heartbreaking.” — Wall Street Journal
Recommended by Choice Magazine
Australia’s no. 1 babycare book, Baby Love, is the most practical, helpful and comprehensive book on the subject available. First published in 1994, Baby Love has since helped millions of parents navigate life with their newborn.
Xoum’s revised and updated digital edition features:
• Up-to-date advice and options to help with baby sleep and baby crying
• Accurate information and reassuring suggestions for getting breastfeeding right for you
• The latest on all aspects of your baby’s nutrition, including bottle feeding
• A selection of healthy recipes to tempt even the fussiest eaters
• New full-colour illustrations
• Handy in-built search functions and useful links
Full of Robin Barker’s trademark wisdom and humour, Baby Love also contains valuable and important information about food allergies and intolerance, safe sleeping, and immunisation.
It all began when IBM manager Cate Colburn-Smith sat down in the company's employee lactation room, shed a few silent tears, and wrote the following on a paper towel: I'm a new mom and today is my first day back at work. Is anyone else using this room?
Right away women responded, and the paper towel was eventually replaced by a series of notebooks, in which women offered one another advice and support on juggling work and a newborn. Based on the original notebooks, The Milk Memos is a heartwarming, encouraging (and often hilarious!) guide to working motherhood.
It's one of the most existential moments any woman will face: sitting in a small room tucked away in the bowels of your company, pumping breast milk for a child so close to your heart-yet, at that moment, so far away. The Milk Memos records the voices of mothers who, while struggling with the difficulties of blending their two lives, prove that women don't have to choose between work and family. Their thoughts on how it can be done will inspire women everywhere. This invaluable book weaves the actual Milk Memos journal entries with information-packed sections on such topics of great concern to working moms as:
- finding a private place to pump breast milk at work and establishing a routine that you can maintain despite your busy workday;
- establishing the right daycare solution;
- getting a decent night's sleep with a new baby so that you can shine (or at least glimmer!) during business hours; and
- negotiating flextime, part-time, or a job share with an employer.
The ultimate gift for any new mom who will soon return to work, The Milk Memos is destined to become a classic on the parenting shelf.
Separate fact from fiction with help from this comprehensive book about improving low milk supply. Written by two leading experts who have been there themselves and officially recommended by La Leche League International, The Breastfeeding Mother's Guide to Making More Milk incorporates the latest research and discoveries about causes of low milk supply, the way your body makes milk, and how babies contribute to your milk production. Best of all, you'll find valuable suggestions for both time-honored and innovative ways to make more milk.
Learn the facts about:Determining if baby is really getting enough milk Supplementing without decreasing your supply Maximizing the amount of milk you can make Identifying the causes of your low supply Increasing your supply with the most effective methods, including pumping, herbs, medications, foods, and alternative therapies Making more milk when you return to work, exclusively pump, have a premie or multiples, relactate, or induce lactation
It’s not every Hollywood starlet whose name greets you on a Virgin Airways flight into la-la land. But Tori Spelling has come to accept that her life is a spectacle. Her name is her brand, and business is booming. Too bad when your job is to be yourself, you can’t exactly take a break.
Tori finally has everything she thought she wanted—a loving family and a successful career—but trying to live a normal life in Hollywood is a little weird. With the irresistible wit, attitude, and humor that fans have come to love, the New York Times bestselling author of sTORI telling and Mommywood is back with more hilarious, heartwarming, and candid stories of juggling work, marriage, motherhood, and reality television cameras.
Tori comes clean about doing her time on jury duty, stalking herself on Twitter, discovering her former 90210 castmates’ "I Hate Tori" club, contracting swine flu, and contacting Farrah Fawcett from the dead. Like many mothers, she struggles to find balance (Stars, they’re just like us!)—only most women don’t have to battle it out with paparazzi at the grocery store. She talks openly about the darker side of life in the spotlight: media scrutiny over her weight and her marriage to Dean McDermott, her controversial relationship with Dean’s ex-wife, and her unfolding reconciliation with her mother.
Having it all isn’t always easy—especially when you’re a perfectionist—but with the help of her unconventional family and friends, an underwear-clad spiritual cleansing or two, and faith in herself, she’s learning to find her happy ending. Because when you’re Tori Spelling, every day brings uncharted terriTORI.
Just when you thought sTORI time was over, the beloved Hollywood starlet has so much more to say.
"My life has changed dramatically in the past several years. I married Dean; we moved several times; we had two children; we created a show that has gone into its fifth season on the air. I have love. I have a family. I have a home. I have work. It’s all I ever wished for. But trying to be a perfect wife, mother, and mini-mogul has its challenges, especially if, like me, you want to be perfect at all of them at the same time." —from uncharted terriTORI
Revealing the naked truth about the tremendous joys, the excruciating pains, and the inevitable disfigurement that go along with pregnancy, Jenny McCarthy tells you what you can really expect when you're expecting! From morning sickness and hormonal rage, to hemorrhoids, granny panties, pregnant sex, and the torture and sweet relief that is delivery, Belly Laughs is must-read comic relief for anyone who is pregnant, has ever been pregnant, is trying to get pregnant, or, indeed, has ever been born!
Chiquis Rivera is a singer and the daughter of the late music superstar Jenni Rivera. In Forgiveness, her memoir, Chiquis bravely reveals the abuse she suffered at the hands of her father during her childhood and the difficulties she’s faced in her personal life as a result. Despite growing up marked by the wounds of abuse, she eventually conquered her fear of love andintimacy.
The story within these pages also recounts what caused the distance between her and her mother toward the end of Jenni’s life. In Forgiveness, Chiquis brings to light truths that she wishes she had been able to reveal to Jenni.
Two years after her mother’s death, Chiquis answers the most difficult questions: Was she able to make peace with Jenni? And in this story of triumph and tragedy, who is most in need of forgiveness?
For eighteen years I was a prisoner. I was an object for someone to use and abuse.
For eighteen years I was not allowed to speak my own name. I became a mother and was forced to be a sister. For eighteen years I survived an impossible situation.
On August 26, 2009, I took my name back. My name is Jaycee Lee Dugard. I don’t think of myself as a victim. I survived.
A Stolen Life is my story—in my own words, in my own way, exactly as I remember it.
The pine cone is a symbol that represents the seed of a new beginning for me. To help facilitate new beginnings, with the support of animal-assisted therapy, the J A Y C Foundation provides support and services for the timely treatment of families recovering from abduction and the aftermath of traumatic experiences—families like my own who need to learn how to heal. In addition, the J A Y C Foundation hopes to facilitate awareness in schools about the important need to care for one another.
Our motto is “Just Ask Yourself to . . . Care!”
A portion of my proceeds from this memoir will be donated to The J A Y C Foundation Inc.
In What a Difference a Mom Makes, New York Times bestselling author Dr. Kevin Leman uses his wit and wisdom to show Mom how to lay the groundwork that will allow her son to grow into a good man. Armed with Dr. Leman's expert advice and insight, Mom will gain an understanding of her boy at every stage, from that very first diaper change to the moment he leaves for college. Dr. Leman shows how to discipline a boy, how to command respect, how to let him fight his own battles, how to understand his sexuality, and how to weather the changes in the mother-son relationship as he grows up. Most of all, Leman shows Mom how to lighten up and have some fun along the way with that boy who will always have her heart.
Mayim Bialik was the child star of the popular 1990s TV sitcom Blossom, but she definitely didn’t follow the typical child-star trajectory. Instead, Mayim got her PhD in neuroscience from UCLA, married her college sweetheart, and had two kids. Mayim then did what many new moms do—she read a lot of books, talked with other parents, and she soon started questioning a lot of the conventional wisdom she heard about the “right” way to raise a child. That’s when she turned to Attachment Parenting, a philosophy and lifestyle popularized by well-known physicians like Dr. William Sears and Dr. Jay Gordon.
To Mayim, Attachment Parenting’s natural, child-led approach not only felt right emotionally, it made sense intellectually and instinctually. She found that when she followed her intuition and relaxed into her role as a mother instead of following some rigid parenting script, both she and her children thrived. Taking into account her experience as a mother (and her scientific background), Mayim presents the major tenets of Attachment Parenting, including:
Baby wearing: How to “wear” your baby in a sling or a wrap to foster a closer bond with your child—it’s possible even for mamas with bad backs (and with big babies)!
Breastfeeding: Learn how to listen to your baby’s cues rather than sticking to a rigid schedule—and why people on airplanes love a nursing mother!
Gentle discipline: How to get your child to behave without yelling, threats, or time-outs—it really is possible.
Co-sleeping: How to avoid “sleep training” and get a great night’s sleep for the whole family.
Without the pretense and luxuries typical of so many Hollywood actors and parents, Mayim describes the beauty, simplicity, and purposefulness of Attachment Parenting, and how it’s become the guiding principle for her family. Much more than a simple how-to parenting guide, Beyond the Sling shows us that the core principles underlying Attachment Parenting are universal and can be appreciated no matter how you decide to raise your child.
Viewers everywhere have fallen in love with this candid look at post-war London. In the 1950s, twenty-two-year-old Jenny Lee leaves her comfortable home to move into a convent and become a midwife in London's East End slums. While delivering babies all over the city, Jenny encounters a colorful cast of women—from the plucky, warm-hearted nuns with whom she lives, to the woman with twenty-four children who can't speak English, to the prostitutes of the city's seedier side.
An unfortgettable story of motherhood, the bravery of a community, and the strength of remarkable and inspiring women, Call the Midwife is the true story behind the beloved PBS series, which will soon return for its sixth season.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Pat Summitt was only 21 when she became head coach of the Tennessee Vols women's basketball team. For 38 years, she broke records, winning more games than any NCAA team in basketball history. She coached an undefeated season, co-captained the first women's Olympic team, was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame, and was named Sports Illustrated 'Sportswoman of the Year'.
She owed her coaching success to her personal struggles and triumphs. She learned to be tough from her strict, demanding father. Motherhood taught her to balance that rigidity with communication and kindness. She was a role model for the many women she coached; 74 of her players have become coaches.
Pat's life took a shocking turn in 2011, when she was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's disease, an irreversible brain condition that affects 5 million Americans. Despite her devastating diagnosis, she led the Vols to win their sixteenth SEC championship in March 2012. Pat continued to be a fighter, facing this new challenge the way she's faced every other--with hard work, perseverance, and a sense of humor.
From the Hardcover edition.
Rosie Perez first caught our attention with her fierce dance in the title sequence of Do the Right Thing and has since defined herself as a funny and talented actress who broke boundaries for Latinas in the film industry. What most people would be surprised to learn is that the woman with the big, effervescent personality has a secret straight out of a Dickens novel. At the age of three, Rosie’s life was turned upside down when her mentally ill mother tore her away from the only family she knew and placed her in a Catholic children’s home in New York’s Westchester County. Thus began her crazily discombobulated childhood of being shuttled between “the Home,” where she and other kids suffered all manners of cruelty from nuns, and various relatives’ apartments in Brooklyn.
Many in her circumstances would have been defined by these harrowing experiences, but with the intense determination that became her trademark, Rosie overcame the odds and made an incredible life for herself. She brings her journey vividly to life on each page of this memoir—from the vibrant streets of Brooklyn to her turbulent years in the Catholic home, and finally to film and TV sets and the LA and New York City hip-hop scenes of the 1980s and ‘90s.
More than a page-turning read, Handbook for an Unpredictable Life is a story of survival. By turns heartbreaking and funny, it is ultimately the inspirational story of a woman who has found a hard-won place of strength and peace.
RUTH WARINER was the thirty-ninth of her father’s forty-two children. Growing up on a farm in rural Mexico, where authorities turn a blind eye to the practices of her community, Ruth lives in a ramshackle house without indoor plumbing or electricity. At church, preachers teach that God will punish the wicked by destroying the world and that women can only ascend to Heaven by entering into polygamous marriages and giving birth to as many children as possible. After Ruth’s father—the man who had been the founding prophet of the colony—is brutally murdered by his brother in a bid for church power, her mother remarries, becoming the second wife of another faithful congregant.
In need of government assistance and supplemental income, Ruth and her siblings are carted back and forth between Mexico and the United States, where Ruth’s mother collects welfare and her stepfather works a variety of odd jobs. Ruth comes to love the time she spends in the States, realizing that perhaps the community into which she was born is not the right one for her. As she begins to doubt her family’s beliefs and question her mother’s choices, she struggles to balance her fierce love for her siblings with her determination to forge a better life for herself.
Recounted from the innocent and hopeful perspective of a child, The Sound of Gravel is the remarkable memoir of one girl’s fight for peace and love. This is an intimate, gripping tale of triumph, courage, and resilience.
"I come from a country that was created at midnight. When I almost died it was just after midday."
When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, one girl spoke out. Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education.
On Tuesday, October 9, 2012, when she was fifteen, she almost paid the ultimate price. She was shot in the head at point-blank range while riding the bus home from school, and few expected her to survive.
Instead, Malala's miraculous recovery has taken her on an extraordinary journey from a remote valley in northern Pakistan to the halls of the United Nations in New York. At sixteen, she became a global symbol of peaceful protest and the youngest nominee ever for the Nobel Peace Prize.
I AM MALALA is the remarkable tale of a family uprooted by global terrorism, of the fight for girls' education, of a father who, himself a school owner, championed and encouraged his daughter to write and attend school, and of brave parents who have a fierce love for their daughter in a society that prizes sons.
I AM MALALA will make you believe in the power of one person's voice to inspire change in the world.
An unlikely political star tells the inspiring story of the two-decade journey that taught her how Washington really works—and really doesn't—in A Fighting Chance
As a child in small-town Oklahoma, Elizabeth Warren yearned to go to college and then become an elementary school teacher—an ambitious goal, given her family's modest means. Early marriage and motherhood seemed to put even that dream out of reach, but fifteen years later she was a distinguished law professor with a deep understanding of why people go bankrupt. Then came the phone call that changed her life: could she come to Washington DC to help advise Congress on rewriting the bankruptcy laws?
Thus began an impolite education into the bare-knuckled, often dysfunctional ways of Washington. She fought for better bankruptcy laws for ten years and lost. She tried to hold the federal government accountable during the financial crisis but became a target of the big banks. She came up with the idea for a new agency designed to protect consumers from predatory bankers and was denied the opportunity to run it. Finally, at age 62, she decided to run for elective office and won the most competitive—and watched—Senate race in the country.
In this passionate, funny, rabble-rousing book, Warren shows why she has chosen to fight tooth and nail for the middle class—and why she has become a hero to all those who believe that America's government can and must do better for working families.