"I devoured this book. Passionate, angry,
honest and intelligent, the
antidote to What to Expect When You're
Expecting, it's one every pregnant
or planning-to-be-pregnant woman with a modicum of ambition would
do well to read."
--Cathi Hanauer, editor of The Bitch in
the House: 26
Women Tell the Truth about Sex, Solitude, Work, Motherhood and
Excerpt from Dispatches from a Not-So-Perfect
"I began to fantasize about being in a house with a man and
a child when I was twenty-three. It was an ambivalent fantasy,
in terms of motherhood; I wasn't sure if I was the child's mother.
I was the man's lover, that much was clear, and the child looked
like him. Maybe I was the live-in mother, or maybe I was a frequent
guest and sex partner who went home to her own bachelorette pad
in the city.
The fantasy opens with me in the foreground, working at a computer
beside a large glass window. It's dusk and a purplish-blue tinges
the sky. I can see the ocean just outside the window and over
a cliff--wild, angry, gorgeous. To my right at an open kitchen
area, an attractive blond man is de-veining shrimp for the paella
he‘s preparing while listening to Miles Davis. The music
is low (out of respect for me), and as the man has anticipated,
it doesn't bother me. I like the sad and lovely trumpet drifting
my way. At once, I feel relaxed and incredibly focused on work
I love doing.
Between the man and me on a clean and bare floor, a blond four-year-old
plays with wooden trucks. He loads tiny logs into the truck beds,
then takes them out and splays them on the floor like a fan. He's
happy without ever being loud, and he doesn't get up. He simply
sits and plays.
Meanwhile, I keep working. There's no reason for me to stop. My
work is going well, and paella takes a long time to cook. Eventually,
when the sky is dark, I do stop, and we--meaning the man and I--eat
at a table beside huge windows that face the sea. We drink red
wine, and there are candles on the table, the kind that bob in
oil inside clear glass cylinders.
I never see the child when I imagine our meal. Maybe he continues
to play quietly into the night, or maybe he has already put himself
to bed. I never see it in my vision, but surely the man must have
placed a bowl of apples, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, a
piece of shrimp from the paella beside the child at some point.
I might even have given him a mug of milk. Pouring luscious whole
milk into a cool blue mug, bending down once to place it on the
floor--I could do that. I could do it and still be myself. "
© 2003 by Faulkner Fox
Read More Excerpts:
The Mothers Movement Online