For some reason the baby issue is one fraught with terror for me. I have come to the conclusion that at some point in my life I will be having a child (colluding with a psychologist mentioned by the author as saying "having a child is just one of the life stages of a woman"). But to be honest, the vagueness of mothers disturbs me. No one seems to want to tell me the truth, so much is sugar coated. My own mother once told me that if she could do it again she wouldnt have children. And this was because of the later years, dealing with my delinquint sister almost tore my parents previously stable marriage apart. Was it worth it in the end?
This book pulls no punches. I was searching for a reason for why women do this to themselves, and realise it is really something no one but a mother understands. The 'baby switch' is on, you have an overpoweing hormonal urge to have a child, and somewhere, somehow, all that you endure becomes worth it for one smile from your baby.
Perhaps it is the same for people who do charity work or missionary work, largely unnoticed although they still gain grateful recognition for what they do, but I agree with the author, mothers are almost never appreciated enough. I have the urge to give my mother a hug, except I did what almost all independant children do - move as far away from my parents as possible, maybe just see them on Christmas. What a sad state of affairs, as the author chronicles in her book.
She was also brutally honest about the gender equality at work. She hits the nail on the head: "women will never be equal to men in the workplace until men develop wombs and are able to bear children"
i have often sat in conferences and felt this same resentment myself when a perfectly good employee suddenly announces she is pregnant with no plan to return to work. This book has made me re-evaluate my opinion, and respect the expectant mother's choice more. It cant be easy. At the same time I understand from a company (or a man's ) point of view...what is the point of hiring someone who will just disappear the moment they become pregnant?
So yes, this book was honest and unflinching...but she hasnt sold the mother thing to me. Maybe I will be like her one day, and my baby switch will turn on because I think I am missing out, or time is running out, and I will be sad and regretful and lonely if I never have kids. I wonder if she would have even wanted kids if she hadnt had that verdict that day...she says she tried to find the facts, but the whole book boiled down to emotions running high (suddenly she HAD to have a baby! No matter what! She bursts out crying suddenly when she sees other women with babies - before she wasnt even certain she wanted one, she notices them EVERYWHERE - not rational or logical)
But this is what I think it does all boil down to. So a great read (couldnt put it down and made me think about it for days afterwards) and an unflinching honest look at motherhood, even if it isnt something you want to hear.