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'Expressing Motherhood' Tells Motherhood Like It is

expressing-motherhoodNew moms often complain nobody ever tells them the bad parts of pregnancy, childbirth and the 18+ years thereafter.

Instead, the freshly pregnant find out about things like meconium aspiration only after they’ve pushed out a baby who is quickly whisked away to the NICU.

Or that it’s completely within the realm of possibility that her beautiful new baby will incessantly cry for the first three months of its life.

Or that her beautiful new baby will someday develop a condition that not even the experts can identify.

Or that one day she may actually call her 8-year-old son an asshole — and not feel all that bad about it.

The performers in “Expressing Motherhood,”  are more than willing to disclose these and other details to anyone who will listen.

This performance of more than a dozen one-woman readings about motherhood, was conceived by two moms during their kids’ naptimes. The show is now on its third cast in Los Angeles, with a fourth cast to perform in September in New York City (including a one woman’s ode to her mini-van).

Not unlike the “Vagina Monologues,” the performers in “Expressing Motherhood” write and perform their own pieces based on their own lives. (You can become part of it and I’ll tell you about that in a second.)

Now, while I write about modern parenting life everyday here — and I also have some favorite parent blogs I read regularly — many of the stories these moms told caught me completely off-guard.

I fully expected to be bored with one that started out singing, so to speak, the praises of Dan Zanes. Instead, I wound up in a controlled sob midway through and it had nothing to do with Dan Zanes and everything to do with how the disconnect between what we expected from motherhood and what came to be can sometimes make us do really pathetic things.

There was also a  mom who took us through the few minutes she spent pulling enormous shards of glass from her daughter’s face while waiting for the ambulance to arrive. And one who talked about chopping up her placenta.

There are two more L.A. performances (this Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 8 and 9) and then three performances in NYC (Thursday, Friday, Saturday Sept. 23, 24, and 25). Go here for ticket info.

Now, what about your story? All the performers wrote original pieces, which they submitted to the show’s director and producer. From there, the performers were chosen, the pieces edited and shaped and then rehearsed for performance. They’ll soon start planning for another L.A. show so start getting your submissions ready. You don’t have to live in the area, apparently, since one mom flew in from Ohio to perform!

Check back at the website for more info. Expressing isn’t just for breastmilk!

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Photo: Twitpic

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