On The Slow Boat To Namaste by Mary Rekosh

My husband Ivan and I do not happen to adhere to the practices of any organized religion, and before we had kids that seemed to be working just fine. We come from different backgrounds (mine agnostic with varying degrees of Christianity in my heritage, his a mix between Jewish and agnostic), but had generally landed in the same spot in adulthood: We believe in a Higher Power, and He or She may or may not be bearded (which does not necessarily designate gender; perhaps just a divine aversion to wax).

A Shard of History

Unexpected Skype issues forced This Manic Mama to take a hiatus. She thought that while she was visiting her parents she might as well interview her mom, author JY Lilly (a.k.a. Lillian, a.k.a. Mom). J.Y. Lilly hails from Edmonton Canada. She is entering the Fantasy genre with her first book A Shard of History: Moment of Truth on a dare to herself. She is a mother, grandmother, and wife. She is also a painter and artist in her own right. J.Y.

No One Told Me There Would Be Nudity Involved by Eliana Osborn

I’ve just released Peter Parker from his leash.  His little terrier legs are running free at the dog park.  Four year old Cole isn’t racing after his best friend like he usually does; instead he’s doing some awkward sort of calisthenics.  I’ve seen this dance before.

“Why didn’t you go before we left the house?  There’s no bathroom here.”

“I have to pee Mom!”  If it wasn’t abundantly clear, now he’s grasping at his crotch in addition to bouncing around.  I have an urge to cross my own legs and hope he doesn’t injure himself.

Words by Cristina Tartaglia

As a forced and oh, so reluctant shopper at Army & Navy boy’s ‘husky’ section, I was never mistaken for a skinny girl.

I wanted to be skinny. Every magazine I saw had multiple articles telling us how to get skinny, it must be good and what everyone wanted. There weren’t tips for getting husky, now, were there?

My childhood observation was that it was an insult to comment on someone’s weight if you thought they were too heavy, but that saying they were thin was good.

Cancer and Cookies by Elizabeth Roland

Cancer, cookies... and a little boy’s first time visiting his dad in the hospital

That Thursday was a day of transition.  My husband Steve, whose colon cancer had returned six months earlier, had already undergone 28 radiation treatments and still looked forward to 5 months of chemotherapy.  But Friday was going to be the Big One.  Doctors at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia planned to completely remove his rectum and re-route his remaining colon to a permanent stoma in his abdomen.  

Ultrasound

This week TMM talks to Rachel Reynolds about her beautiful audio-autobiographical essay on pregnancy called Ultrasound, and about her interest in oral history as a feminist practice. Rachel is Educations Programs Manager for the (In)Visible Memoirs Project, a literary outreach program that nurtures aspiring writers in underserved communities. Listen now.

All's Well and Fair

"I'd rather be free than rich or poor."

This week TMM talks to documentary filmmaker Luci Westphal about her film All's Well and Fair. The series juxtaposes the lives and ideals of 3 single punk rock moms in the 1990s, and takes up the story again to examine their realities and opinions ten years later. This interactive web series provides a unique perspective on alternative culture, parenting, and identity. Listen now.

In Control by Heidi Reimer

A single mother lived upstairs with her seven-year-old son. I was a guest for the week in my friends’ new second-floor apartment in a sunny three-unit house. They hadn’t seen much of their neighbor, they told me, but they’d heard her. Screams, threats, curses, relentless wrath against her child. They laughed about it. She’d had the baby at seventeen; it was a hard life. A lot of times the son screamed back.

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