It’s that time of the year when the kids head off to college and university all over. And of course everyone is happy about it. The kids moving ahead in life and setting out on their own and all that. But there’s a feeling of sadness too. Which is why I think Mothers, Daughters, Braces is such an ideal feel-good book for moms and daughters to share when the kids head back to school! So much to sink into, about shared feelings and all that teen stuff they went through. Of course it’s not the same mother-daughter experience – but I think that’s part of the fun of the book. That it gives you a much bigger story than the one you faced yourself!
My girls know about my writing, but they’re usually not that interested in it. At first I was sort of relieved, especially when they were younger. Now I try hard not to be disappointed! I would have thought that they would be more curious, but they really have their own things and don’t have the patience to deal with mom’s stuff. But I did give both of them Mothers, Daughters, Braces and asked them to tell me what they thought.
They actually both read it! The older one really quickly, the younger one bit by bit over most of the summer. Of course they thought some of it was weird and parts made them uncomfortable. Especially the parts that reminded them too exactly of their own experiences, since I did use some of those in the book. They both said they really liked it – though I know, they had to, mom wrote it. But especially the older one really reacted to it. A couple of evenings this summer, she actually came and sat down to talk with me, and she told me about parts of the book that really spoke to her, which was so rewarding. She was the one who had a tougher time with her braces (and the whole teenage years), and it was great to see that maybe this helped a little with dealing with that – even though she’s already been out of braces for so long. But she hasn’t really gotten over having them yet – I don’t think anyone ever does, but her sister is sort of able to park it away in her memory better – and she really found the book helpful with that. She even asked me for a printed copy of the book – they both read it on their iPads – and she took that with her to school. Which was like the best feeling ever for me, that she wanted to have that near her, and in the real, substantial format. Even if for them the electronic version is just as real and substantial – I’m still old-school… And I like the idea that it will be on her bookshelf, and when her friends ask, “What’s that?” she can say, “Oh that – my mom wrote that!”