When I was given the opportunity to review Lana Mayes’ book Trust Your Melody, something inside of me knew it was a book I needed to read.
At the time, having not long ago had my third baby girl, I was still adjusting to our new family life and as I turned the pages of this book, I was quick to connect to Lana’s story of self-discovery through parenthood.
Lana wrote the book as a form of personal therapy but as it started to take shape she felt the need to share her parenting experiences with others, particularly in relation to the additional challenges she faced with her children including clubfoot and severe reflux.
I can totally relate to the rollercoaster of emotions that Lana describes in her book. My own eldest daughter suffered from reflux as a baby, although to nowhere the extent of Lana’s children, but it definitely affected her sleep patterns when she was younger.
I often had tears in my eyes as I read this book as it brought up a lot of emotion from deep within me. In particular, I feel Lana’s idea that many mums wear a “Mummy Mask” is such a perfect way to explain the way that women often try to give the impression that they are happy and coping for fear of being judged or appearing to fail as a mother.
Lana is a remarkably strong woman and a fabulous mother who has trusted her instincts to be there and speak up on behalf of her children. I think all mums will be able to relate to this book regardless of whether they have experienced clubfoot, reflux or not as we each have our own battles and the emotions are not dissimilar.
Lana is truly an inspiration. Despite the challenges she has faced, she has made the choice to come through them with a positive, honest outlook on life, something that is definitely not easy to do.
A CHAT WITH LANA MAYES
After reading this book, I had the opportunity to interview Lana about her book and parenting journey. Her responses are just as inspiring as the book and I hope one day I’m able to meet Lana in person.
What motivated you to write your book?
Originally my motivation to write came purely from my own need for personal therapy. I was re-living the things I had struggled with since becoming a Mum over and over again in my head, which in turn felt like it was keeping me ‘stuck’ and unable to enjoy our family, or even life in general. I hoped that by writing it all down I would feel more free to move forward; and it worked! Writing is a process I continue to use now that Trust Your Melody has been published – the more often I write, the more clarity I have. Once the book started taking shape, my motivation quickly evolved into a much deeper desire to reach out and connect in a very real way with other parents.
What do you hope mums take away from reading your book?
That each of our parenting experiences are unique, yet the emotions we feel are often similar. I hope other parents who have or do feel overwhelmed in any way are able to use our families experience as a metaphor for their own stories, and know that they too have it within them to come through any darker days. I hope they feel less alone, and more part of a community of parents. I hope it helps them recognise, or re-find, their own strengths, village and trust in themselves. I hope they become more comfortable and confident in following their own style of parenting.
Your book raises the notion that mums often feel the need to wear a ‘Mummy Mask’ in order to hide from the challenges they may be facing or guilt they may be feeling. Why do you feel women do this and how did you break through your own perceptions of mothering?
For me personally, when I really get down to the core of it I wore my ‘Mummy Mask’ because of fear. I was scared of feeling judged for not coping or for not doing the ‘right’ thing to support our children, I was scared of failing at this almighty job of mothering, and I was scared that I would push people away if I was perceived as ‘whinging’ or ‘moaning’. There seems to be such a lot of pressure to show society ‘I’ve got this, I can handle it’. Breaking down my own mask is, at times, still a work in progress, but I have noticed that the more I continue to be honest about how I’m coping and what I’m feeling, the easier it is to move through the tougher times. Ultimately, I think it takes practise and a willingness to be vulnerable, but the rewards are huge.
Finally, if you could give a new mum just one piece of advice what would it be?
Not to get too caught up in finding the ‘right’ way to parent – you probably know infinitely more than you are giving yourself credit for, and you are always free to re-calibrate tomorrow if things need changing up.
For more information or to purchase a copy of on Trust Your Melody in either hard copy or e-book format, visit www.lanamayes.com
To celebrate the launch of Lana’s book Trust Your Melody in e-book format, one lucky reader has the chance to win their very own copy (in their choice of either a hard copy or e-book).
To enter, simply answer this question: If you could go back and give yourself as a new mum one piece of advice what would it be?
THIS COMPETITION HAS NOW CLOSED
The winner is SARAHMARY – an email has been sent in order to claim your prize.
Terms and conditions
This competition is opens at 7am AEDT on 8 December 2015 and closes at 7pm AEDT on 15 December 2015.
This giveaway is based on a game of skill and the best response that answers the question will be selected as the winner.
Entry is via leaving a comment on the giveaway blog post to answer the question.
A valid email address must be included in your entry.
One entry per person, where more than one entry is made the first entry will be taken and any further entries will be deleted.
Your email will be collected for the sole purpose of this giveaway and will never be given or sold to anyone or used for any other purpose.
The winner will be emailed and has 3 days to respond, otherwise the prize winner will be reassessed.
The original blog post will also be updated with the name of the winner.
By entering you are giving consent for your name to be published on the giveaway blog post if you are the winner.
The prize is not transferable, changeable or redeemable for cash.
Prize sent out by the third party will not be replaced in the event it is stolen, lost or damaged in transit.
Ever-changing Life of a Mum accepts no responsibility for prizes sent by the promoter.
This competition is open to Australian residents only aged 18 years and over.
The decision on the winner is final and no dialogue will be entered into otherwise.
These terms are subject to change at any time without notice.
* This is not a sponsored post, however I was gifted a hard copy of the book ‘Trust Your Melody’ (value $30) for the purpose of this review. All opinions expressed are my own.