I love a book that gets me thinking and totally frown when it makes me feel things I wouldn’t want to acknowledge- like loss, emotional pain and most of all, anger…you know the kind that you sealed in your subconscious and swore you’ll never let it get the best of you, but here comes a trigger and bham! You’re all over the place?
Yes, that kind of anger.
About the book:
At thirty-six years old, Caitlin Myer is ready to start a family with her husband. She has left behind the restrictive confines of her Mormon upbringing and early sexual trauma and believes she is now living her happily ever after . . . when her body betrays her. In a single week, she suffers the twin losses of a hysterectomy and the death of her mother, and she is jolted into a terrible awakening that forces her to reckon with her past—and future.
This is the story of one woman’s lifelong combat with a culture—her “escape” from religion at age twenty, only to find herself similarly entrapped in the gender conventions of the secular culture at large, conventions that teach girls and women to shape themselves to please men, to become good wives and mothers. The biblical characters Yael and Judith, wives who became assassins, become her totems as she evolves from wifely submission to warrior independence.
My purpose is to make you happy, he types. In this way he has made himself a wife. To be a wife means to harness your desires, your ego, and concentrate your life’s purpose in your husband. I want something larger, I type.
The author shuttles between her childhood and her present time merging her memories of what she grew up believing and expecting womanhood to be. She draws from her Mormon background, her mother’s pains and struggles and it is almost as if she sees herself in the memory of her mother and she struggles with her loss, fears, disappointments in love and being a wife, and more so finding her essence in a sea of societal and moral expectations.
I love the title, the cover and the tone of this book.
Perhaps, what I struggled with the most while reading this book is how much I could relate to most of what she shared especially on the early indoctrination of girls on what it means to be a good mother, wife and more so on the load of expectations centered around pleasing and seeing to the needs of a man…and that right there, triggered so many questions I’ve had over the years.
It also reminded me of how my Mom was treated when our Dad passed away…and when it got to that point, I cast this book aside and pretended not to care.
And some of the phrases that I highlighted because they truly spoke to my experiences of growing female, seeing how women are treated and the like were:
Once you believe some humans should by nature, through gender or skin or difference, occupy a lower more limited place in the world, once you believe they owe you their love, their attention, their obeisance, it leaks into everything, and this has been the story since the first story was written.
The other one was:
I trained for wiving but I’m not made to be a wife.
I am certain that this book will attract and receive mixed reviews and inasmuch as that would come to be, it doesn’t change the fact that we are brought up on expectations, and our parents dreams, those of their parents and generations before us are fed to us. Some of us carry this torch well, others burn under the weight of it, and some choose to walk in their own path.
The book’s retailing on various platforms around $24.99 for the hardcover and $16.99 for the ebook, you can select your retailer-> here
About the author: Visit her website: https://www.caitlinmyer.com/about