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30 Jun


We interrupt regularly scheduled Heavy Blogging (the long-promised but ever-elusive Feminist Smackdown) for more Happy Blogging: this month’s Perfect Post Awards! (And tomorrow: the June Blog Exchange!)

I’ve never awarded a Perfect Post Award. I’ve thought about it. Every month I read dozens of posts that deserve to be called Perfect Posts, and every month I tell myself that I’m going to sling some awards around. Then the end of the month approaches, and I start reviewing all of the posts that I’ve mentally bookmarked as Perfect and I get overwhelmed. How to choose?

This month, I decided to just suck it up. I narrowed my list down, with difficulty. But I couldn’t get it down to just one. So, unable to follow the rules, I simply ignored the rules and sent in a short-ish list of awardees. Whereupon MommaK asked me really nicely if I could please just narrow it down to one, the better to avoid starting a trend of free-for-all award-slinging (which, while nice in theory, would turn the elegant Perfect Post Awards Ceremony into a bloated festival of sycophancy, hosted by Billy Crystal.)

So by this morning, just in time to have missed the Unveiling of the Perfect Post Awards Recipients, I sent in my revised nomination. I’m hoping that the ever-gracious MommaK will still put up notice of the award on the list, but, as it happens, it’s a moot point, because my awardee and her post are already listed there.

My Perfect Post Award went, this month, to Marla of Hello Josephine, for her post Wherein I end with a poem that I used to think was maudlin. Which is a beautiful piece of poetry, accompanied by beautiful pictures, and is fully deserving. Unofficially, however, this award goes to a post that she wrote earlier in the month and has since deleted. That post described her relationship with her mother and her fears and desires for her own relationship with her daughter, and although it described a relationship that is very different from the one that I share with my own mother, it gripped me completely and left me in tears. It was tremendous. She removed that post because she did not (to paraphrase her) want to have those feelings, in all of their rawness, living in front of her. I completely understand that. But I’m grateful that I caught them while they lived.

But alongside Marla’s wonderful posts, there were a host of other posts by other wonderful bloggers that I also wanted to recognize: among them, BubandPie’s post about keeping a diary, Christina’s thought-provoking piece about her c-section and how art has helped her come to terms with it, and all of the pieces that Scarbie has written about her struggles with anxiety. These were just a few of the many posts I read this month that compelled me to leave banal comments to the effect of wow. And – that was just beautiful. And – the surest sign that I am at a loss for words – thank you.

And, and… I would have liked to have given an award to Amalah, for Nobody Tells You. I know: part of the point of the awards is to spread the love, introduce people to new blogs and great writing that they might not have otherwise come across. And it might be said that there’s something sucky about cruising up to one of the Very, Very Popular Girls and presenting her with a friendship bracelet. Like she needs it, like she cares, and isn’t this all just about getting her notice you?

Whatever. Her post on the experience of losing her temper, however momentarily, with her baby knocked me off of my feet. It was breathtaking in its honesty. It was brave. It described an experience that all of us have – or will – undergo. One that we will all have a great deal of trouble talking about, if we ever speak of it at all. That she spoke of it will make it a little easier for us – for me – to own up to it and to speak honestly about when it happens.

It was also a post that demonstrates the power of writing through the difficulties of motherhood, and of life more generally. And so, in a way, it honors all of those women (and man) who have been blogging their fears and hurts and anxieties in the Basement. Writing through pain or fear or insecurity is powerfully difficult, regardless of whether one does it anonymously or in their own name. But it’s also, simply, powerful. It helps the writer and, perhaps more importantly, it helps all of those who read it. Writing like this demonstrates to both writer and readers that we’re not alone.

So, to Amalah, and to the ladies mentioned above, and – last but not least – to all of the writers of the Basement: I offer you my own award, for writing that demonstrates the power of writing in community. I’m calling them the PIMP awards: Prima Inter Mater Pares (First Among Mother Equals. Latin bastardized for acronymical effect.) You’ve been PIMPed.

Take a bow.

WonderBaby is impressed. Really. On the inside.


A Perfect Post

So, I only realized after this post had gone to press that I had not thanked two super-awesome ladies for bestwoing Perfect Post Awards upon me. Kristi of A Beautiful Mess presented me with Award for ‘Sticks and Stones,’ the post that wrote about my terminally-ill nephew struggling to find a place among his not-always-welcoming peers. And Sarah of Sarah and the Goon Squad honoured ‘How to Lose a Friend in Ten Months,’ my post about being dumped by a friend for being a mommy and a blogger. Thanks, ladies! Those awards made my day, because the posts they honour were difficult to write. Truly lovely to know that you liked them.