My friend Tracy Beckerman, the extremely witty, slice-of-life nationally syndicated columnist has recently given birth…um, to a bouncing baby book Lost in Suburbia: A Momoir. How I Got Pregnant, Lost Myself, and Got My Cool Back in the New Jersey Suburbs (Perigee books). And unlike most babies who don’t smile until they are six weeks old, this book does, well, at least it makes you smile, more like guffaw, snort, spit out your
Tracy writes candidly about having a uber cool job in television in NYC, and giving it all up (shades of Green Acres, without the pigs and the annoying patronizing husband), and forging a new identity despite all the trappings of new motherhood. She describes the search for friends who are interested in more than the latest cleaning products, and what happens when you “out” a mother faking that her child has a peanut allergy. You laugh along as she struggles to redefine her identity in the land of big hair and minivans.
Tracy’s writing is hilarious (and she’s pretty funny in person, too). Quite frankly, the first year of being a mom would have been so much less isolating and so much more fun for me if I’d known her back then (sad horns).
But, then again, even as depressed and grungy as I was (forget mom jeans, I rocked maternity jeans until five months AFTER my daughter was born); I never rode around 24/7 in a ducky bathrobe, with my daughter in the back, until stopped by a police officer and ticketed, as Tracy describes she did in her book in glorious detail. Even though her husband had a feeling something would go wrong….
“You can’t drive me to the train in your bathrobe,” my husband said. “What if someone sees you? What if you get a flat? Everyone will start calling you the Crazy Bathrobe Lady.”
“I’m not crazy. I just look that way,” I shot back. “Now, where are my bunny slippers?”
But there is so much about Tracy’s search to reclaim her identity and cool in suburbia that everyone can relate. Which is why, the members of Mothers & More, the non-profit organization I’m on the board of directors of, really enjoy learning that Tracy actually was a member of Mothers & More in its earlier incarnation, called FEMALE (Former Employed Mothers at the Leading Edge), (although she wasn’t sure what it was at the leading edge of, possibly she thought sleep-deprived insanity) when she spoke to our members in a webinar recently. She wrote a wonderful post about it called Chatting with Mothers & More.
Disclosure: I received a book to review, but the opinions are all my own.