When the opportunity to review The Rookie Mom's Handbook came up, I thought, well, 'rookie' doesn't really apply to me, seeing as I'm about to - OH PLEASE GOD SOON - become a mom again for the second time, but maybe it would be a good recommend for first-time pregnant friends.
So when I began reading it, it was with that in mind: to consider whether a first-time pregnant woman or brand new mom would find it useful. I hadn't really expected that I would find it useful.
But I did.
Granted, a lot of the tips (and can I say? I LOVE the flip-open numbered-tip format. It made it fun to just occasionally pick the book up while grabbing a coffee or something and flip through for inspiration) (but I digress)... a lot of the tips are very been-there/done-that for a second-time mom, but again, this book isn't pitched at second-time moms. Which is why it was a nice surprise for me to a) find tips for activities that I'd never thought of (host an ugly baby clothes party, take a picture in the same spot once a month over a period of months), and b) find some inspiration in ideas for activities that I already knew about (go swimming - this time around, I'm having a warm-weather baby; enjoy art - I meant to go to galleries and museums last time around, but, um...)
I also enjoyed the book because it validated something that I didn't fully appreciate with my first baby - the idea that these creatures are highly portable and user-friendly in a way that toddlers very often (*cough*) are not. I struggled with PPD the first time around and spent a lot of time huddled on the sofa being terrified of everything - the very idea of an excursion out of doors filled me with tremendous anxiety. Looking back, I wish that I'd been of sound enough mind and strong enough will to just get my ass out that door - and into shopping malls and art galleries and cafes and airplanes and bars (those last two? On the agenda for this time, because I'm going to BlogHer with this kid strapped to me kangaroo-style NO MATTER WHAT and I am definitely hitting those parties. So.) This book validates - more than validates, encourages - that approach to early motherhood, and this time around, I was ready for that message.
And, hell yeah I'm gonna spread that message around.
You can find more reviews of The Rookie Mom Handbook at PBN. And consider joining in on the Rookie Mom blog blast this coming weekend!