Monday, February 18, 2008
Rattled: Surviving Your Baby's First Year Without Losing Your Cool by Trish Berg
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Trish Berg is a national speaker for Hearts at Home, author of The Great American Supper Swap and Rattled. She has been published in Today’s Christian Woman, MOMSense, CBN.com, P31 WOMAN, and numerous regional and national publications.
Trish earned her MBA before leaving the workforce for motherhood, then earned her Doctorate in Diaper Changing in Ohio where she and her husband, Mike, keep busy raising their four children on their family cattle farm.
Why do you think it's so easy for moms to get rattled during their baby’s first year?
Motherhood is simply draining and exhausting. Hands down the toughest job I have ever had.
But moms are not alone, and I want moms to know that God walks with them through these exhausting years.
What stresses moms out the most?
I think moms put a lot of pressure on themselves to do it all by themselves, and to do it all the right way. They need to simplify, let go of many details, and ask for help, from their husbands, and from neighbors and friends.
Rattled actually begins by looking at the months of pregnancy. How can moms use this time to prepare to survive baby’s first year?
Nine months is not nearly enough time to fully prepare for motherhood. I am not sure there is enough time to fully prepare.
I remember when our first child, Hannah, was born, I felt that my world had been turned upside down. Hannah did not like to sleep, and so we spent many nights walking the floor, bouncing her up and down, trying desperately to settle her down. My husband, Mike, and I took turns walking laps around the house, like the Indy 500 with a lot more bouncing.
I am not sure I could have prepared for that.
But during your pregnancy, you can prepare in other ways. Like arranging for help. Ask your mom or mother-in-law if they can spend one day with you each week during the first few months. Just knowing someone is coming in the morning to help with the baby can make the being up all night not seem so terrible.
You talk about surviving motherhood. How do you help moms do that?
In Rattled, I talk about a mom’s survival kit. If you were thrown out into the wilderness, you would need FOOD, SHELTER, FIRE and WATER to survive.
Well, moms have been thrown out into the wilderness of motherhood, and to survive, they will need:
Water from the word (2 Samuel 22:3a) –To be in God’s Word.
A fire like desire for prayer (1 Thessalonians 5:17) – Moms can pray their way through their day.
Nourishment body, mind and spirit (1 Corinthians 13:13) – Love on all levels nourishes us.
Shelter from life’s storms (Proverbs 17:17)-Friends to lean on, trust, and support us.
In Rattled, I spend some time talking about how moms can use that survival kit to get back to the joy of mothering.
You spent a lot of time listening to what other mothers had to say. Share with us your best advice for new moms.
I would tell moms to relax. No one does it right all the time. Let the laundry pile up. Leave the dishes in the sink, and just enjoy holding your baby today.
Don’t worry about doing “it” right, just enjoy the moments you have.
But what aboud dads? Give us a few tips into what dad is going through during the first year.
Dads are just as insecure as moms are about parenthood. Even more so in many cases.
Moms do much of the baby feeding, diaper changing, and baby care. So dads can sometimes feel left out, and incapable of caring for their own baby.
One thing moms can do is encourage dad to be involved. But in doing so, moms must let go of “their way” of doing things, and let dad discover his own way.
For example. When Hannah was a baby, every time Mike would change her diaper, I would criticize the way he changed it. I tried to teach him how to put his fingers under the leg elastic and make sure it wasn’t bunched up, preventing a future leak.
But every time I criticized him, he stepped back and became less involved. And you know what? Even when I did the diapers the “right way” they still sometimes leaked.
So I had to learn to let Mike change her diaper his own way. I let him put her to bed his way, bathe her his way, and be the dad God wanted him to be.
That can be difficult for moms who can tend to be slight control freaks when it comes to baby care.
But let me just encourage you that the help you will get from dad if you can let go of those details will bless you in more ways than you can imagine!
In Rattled you’re very open about the loss of your own pregnancy in 2002. How has that loss changed your outlook on motherhood?
I in the 2nd trimester of my fourth pregnancy when I went in for a regular check up. I was not having any problems at all, and went in alone.
My OB/GYN performed an ultrasound just to check for twins, and suddenly my world turned upside down when he could not find a heart beat.
I was completely devastated. Mike and I had two weeks of further testing before we had assurance that our baby had died. And through it all, I prayed for a miracle, my miracle, that my baby would be alive again.
But in the end, God’s miracle was not that my baby survived. God’s miracle was the reassurance that He used me as a vessel to bring a tiny soul to Heaven.
A year later, I lost another child to miscarriage.
Today, I have a greater sense of love and appreciation for my four children here on earth whom I hug with my arms, and a closer tie to Heaven where my two babies are waiting for me, whom I can only hug with my heart for now.
Today you’re the mom of 4 happy and healthy children. What do you see as the greatest blessing about being a mom?
I would say learning patience, but my husband would laugh out loud at that…since I am probably one of the most impatient people there is.
So I guess I would have to say enjoying the journey. I live Psalm 118:24 every day of my life.
“This is the day that the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it.”
Life is messy. Things break. Kids get sick. But moms need to remember to enjoy the journey no matter where the journey leads.
Today at the Berg house, our washing machine is broken. Our mini van needs new tires. We are hanging onto Mike’s 1986 Jeep on a wing and a prayer, hoping it makes it another year or so.
There is mud on my kitchen floor, crumbs on my carpet, and I can honestly say that I love my life. Just as it is.
Now, I certainly have moments where I get stressed and discouraged, and can even lose my temper (just ask my kids), but I am also learning to enjoy each moment of every day as a gift from God.
And thorough it all, my simple hope and prayer is that I can be the mom that God wants me to be.
Where can readers learn more about you, Rattled, your other books, and your ministry to moms?
My website at www.TrishBerg.com offers tons of FREE resources, links and downloads for moms, as well as mor information on my books and ministry.
Moms can also purchase their own copy of Rattled by clicking HERE.
And I will be speaking at all 3 Hearts at Home Conferences in 2008, I would LOVE for you to join me there. The National conference is in March in Illinois, and in the fall there is a conference in Michigan and Minnesota. You can get more information and register at http://www.hearts-at-home.org/
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Welcome to the Adventure of Motherhood
Clutter? Chaos? Exhaustion got you down? You must be a mom. And you’re not alone. Perhaps you thought you had it all together…then your baby was born and your world was turned upside down. If new motherhood has you filled with doubt, guilt, and confusion, Trish Berg wants to offer companionship, hope, and help–plus a lot of humor along the way.
With practical advice and scriptural reminders, Berg presents two pillars of motherhood: Keep it simple and keep it biblical. Relax as you learn that every mom shares your stresses, challenges, and “Aagghh!” moments. In the midst of sleep deprivation and Cheerio dust, you’ll learn to savor the simple joy and privilege of mothering.
“Trish Berg’s advice will turn you from rattled to relaxed. Her solid tips and sense of humor make Rattled the perfect book for new moms.”
- Tim Bete, author of In the Beginning...There Were No Diapers and Guide to Pirate Parenting
“Honest, informative, humorous, well-researched, encouraging, and practical are some of the words describing Rattled. We can never have enough high-quality childrearing books and Trish Berg has outdone herself in this modern manual on capable, competent parenting in the first year. I recommend it.”
- Brenda Nixon, speaker and author of Parenting Power in the Early Years
“This precious book comes straight from the heart. It's personal stories, humor and excellent tips and insights kept me reading ... and smiling ... nodding in agreement. Thank you, Trish, for this most wonderful gift to first year mothers.”
- Michele Steinhauser, author and Founder of Club M.A.W. ~ Encouraging, Equipping and Connecting Mothers and Wives
“Rattled is the perfect resource for an overwhelmed new mom. Trish Berg has broken down helpful information into bite-sized portions — perfect for a mom who desperately needs encouragement and practical help but only has moments of time to read. Trish has provided something for everyone — practical tips, humorous stories, and advice from a mom who’s been there.”
- Glynnis Whitwer, Senior Editor Proverbs 31 Ministries, author of work@home: A Practical Guide for Women Who Want to Work at Home
Rattled: Surviving Your Baby's First Year
Without Losing Your Cool by Trish Berg
Publisher: Multnomah Books
Release Date: January 15, 2008
Genre: Non-fiction > Parenting
$11.19 from Amazon.com
Purchase Rattled: Surviving Your Baby's First Year Without Losing Your Cool by Trish Berg HERE!!!