For the past year I’ve been working away at fulfilling a lifelong dream: I wrote a book. It all started with a goal to be found by a publisher and then turned into this empowering project of independence. I’ve learned so much about the publishing world and myself since I started writing Me Before Mom in October of 2017. There have been ups and there have been downs. Many low points to be exact. I didn’t anticipate the amount of emotional energy this book would have on me.
Introducing my labor of love, Me Before Mom: Putting Your Oxygen Mask on First
I think I always had this book idea in the back of my head. I hadn’t come up with a name for it but when I look at my earlier writing as a mother, the idea is so present. What idea? The idea that you don’t have to completely lose who you are and all that you were to being a mother. My own mom really lived this way when I was a child and I never felt like she didn’t love her or never paid attention to me. I did see how difficult it was for her to reclaim her identity when my sister and I got into high school and she spent more time alone. Of course, it didn’t help that we had recently moved again because of my dad’s job with the United States Air Force, she felt very lonely and my sister and I were off living our best lives.
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Then there’s my best friend, who, after being a stay-at-home mom for over 16 years had her marriage completely fall apart. She too had devoted everything to her family and then she was left having to start all over in her forties. Watching her wrestle with not only the question of how am I going to support myself and my children to having to find herself all over again was so eye-opening to me.
Plus, I can think of more than a handful of people that I knew who crumbled the minute their children left the nest. I started to ask myself, “How can I stop this from happening to me?”
What is Me Before Mom exactly?
I want to start a movement where we as mothers not only embrace our role as mothers but embrace who we have become since we started on this motherhood journey. I am not the same woman I was at 26 years old when I had my son. I’ve gone through depression, raising my children, three pregnancies, medical problems, marriage struggles and the like, all in ten years. I can see how I have to take care of myself first before I can care for my children and my husband because when I’m not caring for myself my depression sneaks up on me. That’s not good for anyone. Plus, and I say this over and over again, if I want to raise adults who contribute to the good of society, they have got to be able to leave my nest. I can’t make my children feel like my entire, soul purpose in life is them; that goes against every fiber of my being. No individual should feel as if the world is centered around them. It doesn’t help anyone out when we’re thinking that way.
So I started to write, and I wrote and wrote until I couldn’t write anymore. I hired an editor to help hold my feet to the fire and what came out was a short, book, written for mothers everywhere. It’s my love letter to you, not only telling you how to really begin to take care of yourself but to give yourself the permission to do so.
How should I read Me Before Mom?
The book itself is short. I wrote it that way. I have a hard time sitting down to read anything for a long time because there’s always something else I could be doing so I wrote Me Before Mom in a way that it can be easily digested. You can read it in one sitting if you’d like, it’s only 45 pages. You can even pick it up and put it back down, skip chapters, skip to the end, etc.
The important part of the book are the questions that I’ve asked you at the end of each chapter. I want you to really think about those, write down your answers in your own journal or you can purchase the Me Before Mom Journal separately. The journal is beautiful, full of color, with quotes from the book and the questions written right there for you. Here’s a sample of what the journal looks like:
If you struggle with mom guilt, not sure of who you are anymore or are tired of dying on the cross of motherhood, this is the book for you! Read it with some girl friends and discuss the questions together. If you’re a new mom, don’t wait, pick it up now so you can be conscious in your approach to life.
You can purchase my book and the journal exclusively on Amazon.
As the creator of the lifestyle blog and book, Me Before Mom, Bert supports millennial moms facing the challenges and changes of motherhood. Me Before Mom is an online community that offers support through real life stories, encouraging advice, and answers to questions about how a woman maintains herself during this self-sacrificial time of parenthood. Stories from Bert Anderson have helped women across the globe through the Huffington Post, Today’s Parent, and on the Harry show. Whether weathering the first year of motherhood or walking through the later stages of motherhood, Bert has helped many continue to find herself while still in the throes of motherhood. Purchase your copy of Me Before Mom: Putting Your Oxygen Mask on First today!