Meet Guest Author Michelle Tan…

What happens when a group of tired over-imaginative mothers, trying to juggle kids, homes, and work, meet online?

First, they realize that they are not so alone in this parenting gig.

Second, they make each other feel that they are quite normal because everyone goes through the same things.

Third, well, they decide to create an anthology of funny parenting stories because they realize that laughter is the key to surviving this parenting game.

Like most others, my world became undone the moment the midwife put a squalling purple baby in my arms. Despite my years of education and being a working woman, I had no clue on how I was going to be entirely responsible for this tiny human being.

Overwhelmed and worried, I did what any sensible person would do. I read every book, I joined mother’s groups, and I asked lots of questions, lots.

However, for every question, there were a few different answers. For every book, there would be a few other more to read. I was none the wiser from when I first started my parenting journey.

Then a couple of years later, I did the craziest thing. I moved away from all of my family and friends, everyone I knew, to Australia, where I knew no one, with my young family.

It was at this point that I realized how alone I was. I then decided to turn to the Internet for a little parenting advice and to see what or who was out there.

It was there that I met an army of like-minded parents, parents who were also trying to find their way on this journey and who used humour as a way to escape the stress and tedium of parenting.

They made me realize that I wasn’t crazy for hiding all my junk food, when I was so tired that I went to have a shower with my clothes on and that sometimes I would count the minutes to their bedtime and maybe told a white lie and moved the clock forward, just a little.

Most importantly, they taught me to laugh again.

I could see the funny side of a diaper blow out, the comical angle of a full-blown tantrum in a Supermarket, or hiding out in the toilet with a Mars bar that I did not want to share. The online conversations helped me keep my sanity in check.

I was allowed to laugh at myself, as a Mother and that it was going to be okay.

There were so many of us, who worried about losing our identity and our sanity. Stay at home mothers worried about losing their sanity through the constant tedium of laundry and household chores, the Work out of home mothers worried if she could deal with the juggle between family, work and housework, and the single mothers worried if she could do it all on her own.

When I met the other parenting writers, on social media and through our blogs, we instantly connected over crazy things our kids said or funny things they did. We bonded over sleepless nights, embarrassing tantrums moments in the grocery store or hiding in the toilets with our chocolate.

We helped each other feel normal, and we wanted to celebrate the unusual, the quirky humourous, the re-imagined fictionalized world of raising children. We wrote parenting stories of secret agents, dinosaurs, prisoners of the state, coneheads, – it’s parenting at its most imaginative.

The idea for “We need to Talk about the Conditions of My imprisonment and other parenting stories” was born because we wanted to share the message – We were all the same, we were all just worried if we could ever be good enough parents but that it’s going to be okay if you keep on laughing.

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