Friday, December 02, 2005

Kicking the habit

When the Plunket nurse told me that Gina Ford's Contented Little Baby book ought to be burned, I initially bristled with a librarian's indignation. Then I had second thoughts about the usefulness of trying to fit my baby into a stranger's vision of how babies work, and have now decided it's time to stop reading parenting books (except for the ones I already have on hold at the library, that is; I've already paid for the privilege).

I'm also going to try avoiding reading novels and biographies about mothering too - that means leaving We need to talk about Kevin on the bookshelf for a few months.

I've started reading Across the Wall by Garth Nix. A book of short stories, the first is a novella which follows on from Abhorsen (a terrific end to a terrific trilogy).

It's going to be much harder for me to stop buying the parenting magazines though, because I have an addiction to magazines in general (unless they are girlie mags, golfing mags or fishing & boating mags). Perhaps if I smoke a cigarette every time I itch to buy a Practical Parenting?


Amanda said...

I actually found the Contented Little Baby book quite helpful though not for the first few months. But at about 3 months I found my daughter quite naturally fitted into the routine but everyone is different and the important thing is what works for you and your baby.

I know what you mean (I think ) about getting sick of reading books about parenting and being a mother and so forth. I went through a minor identity crisis becoming a mother wondering who am I? Who am I supposed to be? sort of thing and since reading is a big part of how I make sense of the world I immersed myself in reading about other peoples experiences. But eventually I got tired of feeling like my experience was being mediated and actually compromised by doing that because I just didn't feel the same way a lot of people seem to be feel about it all. And eventually I decided that I wanted to be me, not them, and that I'd do the mother thing in my own way.

Avery's mom said...

I recieve every magazine known to rearing a child. my sweetheart bought a 3 year subscription and its flooding the house. seriously if you want any, I have like twenty brought to my home every month and its killing me. I dont mind reading them but who really has the time

darth said...

i was a bit disappointed with Across the Wall-i did like the arthurian story about the lady in the lake, but nothing grabbed me the way the abhorsen series did-i'm re-reading sabriel right now!

Violet said...

mtnw: yep, reading about it is how I make sense of the world too. Only in this case all it's doing is confusing me because there's so much contradicting advice.

avery's mom: That's a real nice offer, but we live at opposite ends of the world. The postage fee itself would be almost as much as the newstand cost of the magazines!

darth: didn't you like Nicholas Sayre and the Creature in the Cabinet, even?

Ms Mac said...

Oooh! My James loves Garth Nix books!

Hae you thought that perhaps if baby stays awake a litle more during the day she may sleep a bit more at night? I think the best way to handle parenting books is to pick and choose the best bits which you think may work for you from your faves. Have you read any Dr Christopher Green? I used to think he was pretty on the money.

Violet said...

ms mac: she doesn't have trouble sleeping at night, except that wakes up frequently to feed due to her disinterest in food during the day. Also she stays up too much during the day already, because she only naps for 45 mins at a time as still lookes tired aftwerwards. I think I have the Christopher Green book on hold at the library.