My latest movie column, on Autism: The Musical, is up now, and I urge you — even if you think the movie has nothing to do with you — to take a look. It’s a terrific and eye-opening film. Here’s a blurb from my column:
Elaine, Hillary, Roseanne and Dianne are some of the mothers of autistic children we meet in the stunning new documentary, Autism: The Musical (Tricia Regan, 2007). Elaine brings them together at The Miracle Project, a theater and movement program she has founded to help her son Neal and other autistic kids learn to communicate their feelings and to control their impulses, but most of all, “to have a great time, [to] feel great.”
Also, check out “A Vinyl Batgirl Notebook” by Mama, PhD contributor Jessica Smartt Gullion; the essay offers a funny glimpse into the daily balancing act of being a writer and a mother (I don’t know a thing about that). Here’s a blurb:
“The kids are fighting again: ‘She keeps goin’ in my room!’ ‘He hitted me!’ ‘She push-ted me first!’ ‘Mama!’ ‘Mama!’ I wipe a Clorox-coated rag across the blue paint-splattered pattern of my kitchen counters and wonder for the thousandth time what kind of person would choose this design.”
Literary Mama’s Literary Reflections department is seeking personal essays about writing as a mother, reading as a mother, or developing a career as a professional mother-writer. If any of you have such an essay in your portfolio or an idea brewing along these lines, we welcome your participation. Also, pass along this call to any other writers/mothers who may have an interest in submitting to LM.
Click here for the complete submissions guidelines.
This month in Literary Reflections, Kim Todd’s gorgeous essay, “Under the Skin: Lessons in Transformation. ” Here’s a taste:
When I discovered I was pregnant, I was knee-deep in research for a book on an adventure-loving woman who, 300 years ago, at the age of 52, sailed to South America from Amsterdam to study insects. My desk lay buried under notes on Maria Sibylla Merian and her pioneering investigations of metamorphosis, the change of caterpillar to butterfly. Stacks of books detailed how she and her peers, at the dawn of science, explored questions of development and transformation. How does a creature gain new parts, either a human embryo growing lungs or a caterpillar sprouting wings? They wrangled with the enigma of self divided. Larva and moth. Mother and child: Were they one, or two?
Suddenly, the mysteries probed in these seventeenth-century treatises were unfolding under my skin. Within weeks, my hair developed a luster beyond the magic of the most expensive conditioners. Insomnia, a clean, hard light bulb of wakefulness, switched on reliably at 3 a.m. A three-mile run had been part of my routine for years, but now I was limping back, gasping, after a few blocks. A trip to the ob/gyn not long after revealed that I was breathing not just for two, but for three. Twins.
Head on over to Literary Mama to read the rest!
Image from Maria Merian’s Dissertatio de Generatione et Metamorphosibus Insectorum Surinamensium, The Hague, 1726 edition.
Check out all the good Father’s Day reading over at Literary Mama, including Libby’s column, my column, and one of the new features that we have been working hard on: a reading list!
We’re celebrating Father’s Day all month long over at Literary Mama, including a Literary Reflections essay by Lisa Gates titled “Essential Functions.” Here’s a blurb:
At 7:30 a.m., as I drive my son to school, he asks, “What are you thinking about, Mom?”
“Oh, lots of things.”
My son grins. “You always get that far away look when you’re inventing something to write.” My heart falls on top of itself. He wiggles out of the back seat and before he slams the door, he says, “You should call Grandpa, Mom.”
Click on over to Literary Reflections to read more!