When I was contacted about reviewing MomSense: A Common-Sense Guide to Confident Mothering by Jean Blackmer, I must admit my interest was piqued. After all, it seemed like perfect timing. It came right at the time where I was beginning to question my abilities as a mother. After the initial shock of having a newborn baby to take care of, I felt like I got into the swing of things pretty easily. But it seems it was a false sense of security. Things that used to work wonders don't work at all now. Sleep is no longer something Peanut is all that interested in. He cries for no reason now. At least not any reason that is apparent to us. I was definitely losing confidence that I am doing this mommy thing right. So, it was with interest that I picked up MomSense and started to read.
Right from the start I could tell that it would be an easy read. And thank goodness, because it's hard to find the time to squeeze in any reading between diapers, nursing, cleaning up puke (so much puke!) and attempting to keep the house in some sort of incredibly messy order. The book has a great, natural flow, and it's pretty funny. I definitely had a few moments where I laughed aloud. Which is awesome because a sense of humour is necessary for being a mom.
I enjoyed the fact that this isn't a "how-to" guide for mothering. As mothers, we get enough people, books, media, etc. telling us what to do, how to mother, what we are doing wrong. MomSense is all about listening to what your common sense and your intuition tell you. And that is a refreshing reminder; that we know what the heck we are doing if we just listen to our instincts. Another thing I liked was the section on "Practicing your Momsense". There are 8 "senses" she explores: a sense of patience, respect, consistency, perspective, self-control, calm, joy and love. Each little chapter gives you ideas on how to practice these "senses", which I think are essential for being a great parent.
Jean is the publishing manager for MOPS International. I must admit I had never heard of MOPS before this book. MOPS is a community that offers support, encouragement and resources for moms. It is also a faith-based group, and the book does address the role of faith in a mother's life as well. This is an honest review, and so I feel the need to disclose that I would not classify myself as a very religious person, and was a little wary about whether or not I would connect with this aspect of the book. I also struggled with whether or not to address this issue in the review, as I feel faith is a very personal issue. However, I feel that it was an intrinsic part of the book, and to write an honest review, I had to address it. And, in keeping with the honesty, it is definitely something that I have been examining for myself lately. The chapter on "Sensing Something Greater" starts out like this:
"Becoming a mother opens up a new window in a woman's mind and heart. Maybe it's that cute cherubic face smiling up at her, or the overwhelming feeling of love and a sense of responsibility, that lead a mom to experience a newfound longing for God in her life."
And you know what? For me that has been so true. In fact, it's a discussion that I had with Hubby a couple of weeks ago. Becoming a parent does make you re-examine the spiritual side of yourself, whether that be God, or whatever higher power you believe in. At least it has for us. And so it was interesting to have a book that talks about that aspect of parenthood, and how it all fits.
All in all, I really enjoyed the book. It is the perfect balance of reminders of what it takes to be a good parent without telling you what you NEED to do, think or say. I think it's a great read not only for new mothers, but for experienced ones as well. It did give me more confidence in myself as a mother, and that when I am questioning if I am doing it right, to trust my MomSense.
Please note (in the interest of honesty, and legality!): I was given a copy of MomSense for this review, however all opinions are my own. I was not financially compensated in any way for this review. Thanks!
I'm Amy, and I'm a Mommy with nary a clue as to how to do this whole "parenting" thing. As a former traveler, I view this as another journey, although this time without a map, a plan or a clue! We call Canada home.