Carl Jung said, "Children are driven, unconsciously, in a direction that is intended to compensate for everything that was left unfulfilled in the life of their parents." It is this very statement that haunts Jennifer Lauck, and inspires Show Me the Way, a marvelous book of honest, funny, and touching stories from the trenches of motherhood.
Having lost both of her parents at an early age, Jennifer Lauck, acclaimed author of the memoir Blackbird, as well as its follow-up, Still Waters, has in Show Me the Way come to terms with her past in order to move forward as a mother to her own children.
A luminous writer who is always observing, whose self-examination is frank, poignant, and never cloying, Lauck's stories touch upon themes common to so many of her readers: labor, delivery, and the physical details of giving birth; the decision to have a second child; the struggle to maintain independence against the pull of motherhood; the tenuous work/life balancing act; the gossamer threads holding family together; the soul-defining nature of caring for children; and the ultimate surrender of finally "getting it."
Illustrating the author's wonderful insight, irreverence, and core of inner strength, Show Me the Way is a book for all mothers, and a rewarding conclusion for fans of Jennifer Lauck.
Lauck tells of her struggle to raise her children and come to terms with the circumstances of her own harrowing upbringing in short, captivating stories alternating between past and present. This is Lauck's third book, and it focuses less on her past than did Blackbird and its follow-up, Still Waters. The author recaps her life in snippets related to her present status as a wife and mother of two children. Her childhood was hard, to say the least: her mother died when she was seven, her father when she was nine, and her brother committed suicide in her first year of college; yet she's levelheaded and conscientious about the way her past will play out in relation to raising children. At one point she describes her labor "A deep pain digs at my back and catches my breath. I want to keep looking back, but I can't anymore" essentially summing up her theory that it's important not to endow children with parental history. Lauck is not self-indulgent and does not invoke pity; she does, however, command respect and provide inspiration as she honestly continues to teach herself how to be a mother, all the while fighting to listen to intuition. Through this exploration of motherhood, she ends up teaching readers something about raising children, keeping in mind that no matter how hard a parent tries to prevent it, a child is inevitably affected by his or her parents' past.