Desperately Seeking Baby...Babies Found

My thoughts on raising twins and a singleton after infertility.

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Monday, October 12, 2009

Book Club - "It Sucked and Then I Cried"

I've finally decided to get back into the online book club and this month they were discussing "It Sucked and Then I Cried" by Heather Armstrong aka Dooce.

First of all, I loved this book. Her writing style and humor are great!

Now onto the questions...

Heather obviously has a very distinctive writing style that comes across in both her blog and her book. What do you think has made Heather such a famous blogger? Her writing style, honesty, or something else? Do you write with the same passion and honesty that Heather does?

I definitely think it's her writing style and humor, like I said above. :-D She has a way of talking about serious subjects with humor that it's hard not to want to read the next entry or the next chapter. I definitely don't write the same way she does. I just am not that good of a writer, nor do I have the wit she does. I do sometimes wish I could write with as much honesty as she does, but I'm afraid of what those I know who are reading would say. I don't think some would realize that I'm just venting sometimes and I just need to get it out. Although, I could just as easily take things personally too.

One of the main reasons why I was interested in this book was that she was going to address her issues of postpartum depression, which I struggled through with both my children. I found her frank style dealing with this issue very helpful and I could relate to her distress. Have you or some one you know dealt with PPD or depression? How did the author’s experience resonate with you?

I've known people who have dealt with PPD, read books about it, and have gone through a minor bit of it myself. Sometimes I wonder if I'm really through it even now. Her experience was definitely different from mine though. I didn't feel like it was strong enough to need medication for a long time, and when I did think it could help, I only was on a minor dose and for the most part, I think that helped me. I do wish I would have written about it more to get those feelings out there as she did. I think that would have helped tremendously, but I just could never find the time. Reading her talk about it made me think I should have tried harder.

The author's blog is well-known for her biting sense of humor, interspersed with expressions of deep emotion toward her children and husband. Although there was plenty of humor, I found the book to be much heavier on emotion than I expected based on reading her blog. On your own blog, how much emotion do you express? Is that more or less than you tend to express in real life?

I just to write more emotional pieces before we were pregnant. Since then, I've become the "mommy blogger". I don't seem to write about the times that I'm having a hard time with things anymore because no one wants to hear that from someone who was able to get pregnant from IVF and then have a surprise pregnancy! However, I think there are things post-pregnancy that would be good to write about - i.e., PPD.

I don't think, however, I could go to the level of honesty that she expresses. With her and Brooke Shields - they were so open about how they were feeling - even the bad parts. I guess I was too afraid to admit that there were times that I had some of the feelings that they expressed in their books/blog (of course, I kinda just did).

The author talks about how she imagined her future children before becoming pregnant:

When you're childless and young and hopeful, you have this idea of what your children are going to be like, and you make mental notes when you see other kids in public. You say to yourself, "My kid will be cute like that," or "My kid won't ever throw a tantrum in public like that little demon." I had always envisioned a sweet little princess who looked just like me sitting quietly in a high chair, her pressed velvet petticoat creased perfectly as she sat and waited to be handed things in a timely manner. And then you grow up and have kids and realize that YOU HAVE NO SAY...

Before starting to try to conceive, how did you imagine your future children? If you now have children, how did your expectations fit reality?

I guess I did have this vision in my head of how parenting was going to be like - that my children won't misbehave in public. That I'd be able to control them and they would listen and understand when I needed them to behave. While at the same time, I rationally knew that I was going to have times that this wouldn't be the case. After all, my sister has 4 kids. I was a teenager when my brothers were first born (or close to it), so I knew what was reality. But you still think things are going to be different for you - but it turns out, my children will have breakdowns in public and they will not sit quietly at the restaurant table the whole time until it is ready to go. People used to say our children were well-behaved - well, that was before they turned 2.

Hop along to another stop on this blog tour by visiting the main list at Stirrup Queens ( You can also sign up for the next book on this online book club: The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster. I got my copy today!

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  • At 8:11 AM , Blogger loribeth said...

    Glad you decided to join in!

    I think we all have this idealized picture of motherhood in our heads. No wonder reality so often turns out to be such a shocker.

  • At 6:57 AM , Blogger Baby Smiling In Back Seat said...

    Hopefully the day will come again soon when people can say that your children are well-behaved!


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