Today I finished “The Danish Way of Parenting: A Guide To Raising The Happiest Kids in the World” by Jessica Alexander, Iben Sandhal (the website) I love reading about different cultural approaches to child-rearing. The book was good overall, it didn’t go into depth about practical methods, but I agree with all the main points. The idea of hygge (“getting cosy together”) and authenticity appealed to me the most.
I thought why not share a comforting pile that is always, always by my bed:
1. Buddhism for Mothers by Sarah Naphtali– wonderful book that came to me in just the right time, literally fell into my hands from the shelf where it sat forgotten after I grabbed it at the library. sale. Such simple, such obvious method (when I thought about it) to be a calmer, more present parent. A gentle reminder of acceptance and compassion.
2.Mary Oliver’s poems. What concentrated amazingness, love for nature, the ability to observe and notice things. Her poems, even the sad ones are always a comfort. I often recite “The Lamps” to myself when I light the candles in my kitchen. And the final verse of The Buddha’s Last Instruction always touches my heart:
And then I feel the sun itself
as it blazes over the hills,
like a million flowers on fire–
clearly, I’m not needed,
yet I feel myself turning
into something of inexplicable value…
There are so many poems that have little pencil hearts next to the title. Just Beauty. Check out lovely article about Mary Oliver on Brainpickings too.
3. Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. Indeed this year is the year of book magic. Another spontaneous buy and what a delight. And in such a right time too. Anne Morrow Lindbergh wrote this book over 50 years ago, yet every word rings true. It made me think a lot about self care, if “me time” I have is really for me, it made me think of overall health of the relationships I have with the world and my loved ones. Wonderful book.
4. The Abundant Mama’s Guide to Savoring Slow by Shawn Fink of Abundant Mama Project. It is the newest addition to my comfort pile and I absolutely love it. Many important things that are obvious but so often forgotten in the daily turmoil are brought up. The author suggests this book should be read in monthly chunks to give one time to implement the way of embracing life and make these simple changes a habit.
5. A Year of Mornings from 3191 miles apart team, a wonderful collection of diptychs showing simple pieces of everyday life throughout the year. I keep it next to my bed as a reminder to see magic in the most ordinary of moments.
6. Your Illustrated Guide to Becoming One with the Universe by Yumi Sakugawa, bough for the art, kept for wonderful ispirations for meditation. I am not the type to read a lot of self-help books (even when I know I should), and this one sums up the important points and illustrations help to visualise the whole thing.
So here they are, my little “mama’s comfort” stack, all of these books made a difference in my perception of motherhood and who I am as a person overall. Please share your favorite “mama reads”, I would love to find new fascinating reads.