I readily admit that I am addicted to books. As a publisher, that makes sense, right? But I will also quickly admit that I push my addictions on others. How, you might ask? Well, I have never attended a party or shower – birthday, baby, or bridal – and not given a book along with my requisite gift. And, for me, the book always comes from deep within my heart. I love spending time searching through titles, finding the perfect one for the occasion. This year, with many such occasions already filling my calendar, I feel blessed to have come across Letters to Mary from a Young Mother by Patrice M. Fagnant-MacArthur. It is the ideal book to give to every expectant or new mother.
The simplicity of Letters to Mary from a Young Mother is what makes it ideal for new moms. Each page is just an honest reflection of some of the joys and challenges of impending motherhood and then motherhood itself. It begins with questions about pregnancy and carries through to sleepless nights and then the first babblings of a toddler.
And, as anyone knows, a new mom doesn’t have time to read scores of books filled with advice that gets lost in the sleep-deprived state of new motherhood. Rather, what a new mom needs is a simple sentence or two, spoken by someone else, which reflects the universal experience of new moms. To know that someone else experiences “baby blues” is very comforting. Or to hear another mother ponder the worry that sometimes takes hold of a new mother is reassuring. All this happens in a simple series of entries and questions directed to the Blessed Mother, herself a source of comfort and intercession.
This kindest gift you can give a new mother is a book like Letters to Mary from a Young Mother because it is neither too cumbersome to read, nor does it preach. It simply shares from the heart of one mother to the heart of another, and in that sharing unites all new mothers to the Blessed Mother. I truly wish someone had given me this precious book when my boys were babies!
Cheryl Dickow is a Catholic author and speaker. Her company, BezalelBooks, publishes Catholic fiction and non-fiction titles. Cheryl is CE’s Associate Editor for “Today’s Catholic Woman,” the Catholic Exchange woman’s channel.