About the Book

When Did I Get Like This? is the hilarious story of one mother’s struggle to shrug off the ridiculous standards of modern parenting, and remember how to enjoy her children.

Before I became a mother, failing at something did not shake my fundamental belief in my capabilities as a human being. But now that I am the mother of three children under the age of seven, I have one overriding daily thought: I suck at this.

What kind of mother feeds her kids dinosaur chicken nuggets? Three times a week? What kind of mother lets handwashing after using the toilet slide, as long as it was just Number One? And then I wonder: when did I get like this? Why do I doubt my parenting abilities day after day? Why does motherhood, a quotidian job as old as Eve, have me teetering daily on the edge of insanity?

With each new stage of motherhood, I tell myself I will never again be suckered by the question, “Don’t you want what’s best for your children?” And yet, time after time, I am. Sometimes I am right to obsess. Other times, the record will show, it has been distinctly counterproductive.

Over the last seven years of long days with little children, I have certainly had many moments of joy, calm, and peaceful reverie.

This book is about the other moments.

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