5 Must Read Books for Mamas (Who are Tired of Parenting Books)

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Hey mama, I see you. Reading all the books and thinking, “shiiiiiiiiiiiiiit. Am I doing this right?” Let me tell you, there is no right way of doing this whole baby-raising gig. And another secret? Putting down the books is the best thing you can do for yourself right this second, to feel greater ease in motherhood. I mean, have any of those parenting pros ever met you or your baby? No? Didn’t think so. Listen, YOU are the expert on your baby. Trust yourself!

I haven’t read any books on parenting and I swear it’s kept me (mostly) sane. But these reads below are like a literary high-five for moms everywhere: they’ll leave you feeling more relaxed, less alone and even willing to laugh at this wild ride of mom life:

Momma Zen by Karen Maezen Miller

My all time favorite, Miller is a Zen Buddhist monk and her memoir is funny, brutally honest and compassionate, all at the same time. Her writing inspires freedom in motherhood and a reminder to loosen our grip on control.

Operating Instructions by Anne Lamott

I absolutely love the writing of Anne Lamott. Like, if I could have dinner with anyone, it would be her. Anyway, her account of her son’s first year of life is not only refreshing but also reassuring that yes indeed, we’re all gonna be okay.

Bringing up Bebe by Pamela Druckerman

This is literally the story of an American in Paris; a first-time American mother in Paris, that is. Druckerman is an outsider looking in and the laid-back, French way of raising babies left me breathing a sigh of relief (and feeling a lot less like a slacker-mom).  

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

I want to kick it old school and bring this classic into the fold. The fictional story of the March sisters is wonderful by itself but my favorite is their mother (whom the daughters call “Marmee”) who is wise, progressive, principled and fearless in her motherhood.

Expecting Better by Emily Oster

Hello, baby bumps! This one is for all you expectant mamas out there. During her first pregnancy, Oster started to wonder about all the “rules” prescribed to pregnant women in the US. She set out to study the evidence and the result is a surprisingly humorous and engaging read that busts just about every pregnancy myth out there, so don’t put down that glass of wine just yet!

What’s on your nightstand? What read saved your sanity?