Rebecca Eckler is one of Canada's most talked about newspaper columnists, the author of Knocked Up: Confessions of a Hip Mother to Be, which has been translated into nine languages. Also the author of the bestsellers, Wiped!, Toddlers Gone Wild, and Rotten Apple, the first in a YA series. Random thoughts on life in the competitive world of modern mommyhood. Blog will be loved by trendy mothers who still feel, or often feel, that the most important word in "mommee" is ME!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Immaturity Rocks! So there!

The one thing I'm totally enjoying about being a mother right now is how it allows you to be a kid again.

I swear to god, I hadn't eaten an Oreo cookie in ten years, before about a month ago, when The Dictator decided she liked them (or at least the icing part.)

Here are my top five reasons why-I-Love-LOVE-LOVE!! having a three year old best friend (I know. I know. It's happened. I now consider my three year old my best friend -- hey, it happens to the best of us!)

1) I now eat Oreo cookies with her just like a kid again. I take off the top cookie, use my fingers to lick off the icing. And then finish off the rest. How fun is that? I also love the fact she loves bubblegum ice cream. I mean, when is the last time you ordered bubblegum ice cream?

2) I actually laugh out loud when she says silly things like, "Bed farts." She has no idea what she's talking about, and neither do I, but it's super fun to just be silly sometimes and make up words.

3) I did my first summersault (how do you spell summersault???) in about 15 years the other day with The Dictator. It was fun. And who knew that I could still do those things? I even tried a cartwheel!

4) I love her imagination. I love the fact I can tell The Dictator that if she takes a sip off water, she'll turn purple with pink polka dots. And then she tells me to drink my water and says, "Your'e turning orange!" I love that she believes in magic. I love that I can draw with a marker eyes and a mouth on my pointer finger, and tell her its my "special Tickley Worm" who likes to slither up her stomach and keep warm. I love when she asks me every day, "Where's Tickly Worm now? Can I see him?"

5) I love that she loves to be tickled and laughs so hard. Then she says, "I want to tickle you!!" And she does. And you know what? It completely makes me laugh.

Oh, and I'll add how she now is completely obsessed with Strawberry Shortcake. I remember being obsessed with Strawberry Shortcake....and how she'll often say to me, "You can do it Mommy!" (When was the last time someone told you that??)

Ahh, the memories...

There is something to this thing called immaturity....

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Bad Reviews....

So, the first bad review of Wiped! Life With A Pint-Size Dictator has come in. It's shocking, I tell you. S-h-o-c-k-i-n-g! Of course, I'm joking.

(I promise this is not a sales pitch to buy the book, although you can pre-order it now at, or

Anyhoo, getting reviewed is a, well, it's a tricky - make that make-me-want-to-put-my-head-over-the-toilet-and-puke - kind of thing.

It's also kind of a funny and very surreal experience (after that feeling of wanting to puke phase passes. Luckily it does after a good run on the treadmill. Then it does become funny.)

I called The Fiance at work. "Well, I probably got one of the worst reviews EVER," I told him, as I changed into my gym clothes. The Fiance asked what magazine the review was in. I told him. His response?

"Um, what magazine? Is it Canadian?" he asked. The Fiance, a very smart and well read man, had never even heard of the magazine. Which I thought was super cute.

"Are you surprised?" The fiance asked. "Please tell me you're not suprised that you got a bad review?"

"No, I'm not surprised," I said. "I just wasn't expecting it for another month."

And that's the truth. I expected bad reviews but since the book doesn't officially hit book stores until the end of March, I was kind of hoping I had another four weeks before I had to think about any of it.

I am friends with a handful of authors, all who of course, upon publishing a book, have dealt with the "bad reviews." In fact, even in a glowing review, if there is one line that criticizes something in their book, that's the part they fixate on. FOREVER.

Getting a book review is kind of, well, it's like life.

You could have abosolutely everything going for you - a roof over your head, a job, even a beautiful, healthy child - and you end up fixating on the things you think suck in your life - like you weren't invited to a party, you think your thighs are too fat, that that guy didn't call you when he said he would.

Canada is a very small country. Most writers know each other, or at the very least have shared a cocktail or two.

One author I know, who is very much into the literary scene and has been for years and years, always ends up getting reviewed by friends, which is what happens when you live in Canada.

Or you get reviewed by people who hate you, even though they don't really know you, which is just as unfair (I know, I know, LIFE is unfair.) But that really IS unfair. (I know, I know, Life is really unfair.)

Anyway, this author I know ends up getting mad at his friends (even in an overall glowing review) if they criticize one little part. Which I get. I mean, friends are the ones who are always supposed to support you, right? Then again, book reviews are supposed to be objective, right?

Anyway, this author decided to stop reading all his reviews. Or so he says. Maybe he really doesn't read his reviews.

Generally though, writers are a very insecure bunch and our egos bruise easily and we're sort of self-destructive and nothing is more self-destructive than reading reviews, especially if they're bad. Hey, it gives us something new to moan about to our friends for a couple days. And writers really like to moan, because it's a way to procrastinate.

It's very wise, I think, not to read reviews of your own book. But how do you not? You need will power, which is something that the empty box of Oreo cookies I ate last night at midnight will tell you I just do not have.

Anyway, do you mommy bloggers read book reviews?

I'll admit the only book review sections I really read are in the New York Times and also People magazine. I think that's how I found out about Heather O'Neills book, Lullibies for Little Criminals, which you should definitely pick up. It's a great read.

Here's what it comes down to.

You get a good review and you get good sales.


You get a good review and have bad sales.


You get a bad review and have bad sales.


You get a bad review and have good sales.

You may as well go to Vegas and put that $100 on red. Books that have gotten slammed do amazingly well. And books that get raves sell like shit.

I think to find a reviewer who would "get" and be open to someone like me would be very hard indeed. I mean, how many other writers in Canada write openly about getting knocked up in a drunken state? (Trust me, I know a lot of babies are made that way.)

I mean, middle-age men wouldn't exactly get where I'm coming from (My obsession, which all women go through while pregnant, about their growing ass, and then my obsession with getting back into my pre-baby clothes) neither would anyone who takes life too seriously (Hey, if you can't laugh at yourself...)

And, my god, if I have to read one...more...time...about how I think I'm the only woman to have given birth....(Don't all women who get pregnant for the first time kind of feel like they're the first ones to ever have gone through it? That's why, when you get pregnant for the second time, you're so much more relaxed.)

Wiped! Life with A Pint-Size Dictator is my experience going through the first two years of life with The Dictator. There are some serious issues, how people at work treat you differently, post-partum, how your relationship changes, along with some humourous moments (cheerios stuck on my ass, my hair falling out.)

Wiped! is not meant to win any nobel prizes or awards for writing. And I didn't write it with reviewers in mind that's for sure.

I wrote it for modern gals who are thinking about having a baby, who already have a baby or toddler, who can laugh along with me at the good times and bad times (of which there are many,) those who wonder what they're missing out on (or not missing out on) and who would enjoy a light read in the bath, on the beach, on the bus, in our constant sleep-deprived states.

It's meant to be light-hearted and fun and hopefully people will walk away thinking, "I so know what she means." Or, "I've so been there, done that." Or, "Oh, no! Is this what's really in store for me????" Or, "I told you honey, I'm not going crazy. It happened to her too!"

Life is too short to worry about reviews, good ones or bad ones. Luckily, I have a tredmill at home. And a never ending supply of Oreo cookies. After fifteen minutes of running, or Oreo-binging, I feel just fine.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Scaring the #@)%*# out of me...

It's funny, as mothers, how we always wait for moments. Like I couldn't wait for The Dictator to start walking, for example.

Until last night, that is....

I'm not saying The Dictator is, um, slow...but she kind of is. Like it took her more than three years to realize that she could just get out of her bed anytime she wanted. There were no sidebars, no gates.

In fact, I think she's been in her Big Girl Bed now for a year and a half....

Ok, I used to watch SuperNanny. And I saw how many times parents had to put their bratty kids back into bed. There was this one show, I swear, that this kid got out of his bed 46 times before finally going to sleep.

The Dictator only recently realized she could get out of her bed. Which has turned bedtime into, well, it's turned it into an hour and a half, um, "experience."

Meaning, the teeth have been brushed, the face has been washed, the pjs have been put on, we read a few books.

Thank god, The Dictator is such a bad negotiator. At least I can say that. She's like, "I want you to read me ten books." Then I'll say, "I'll read you four books." Then she'll say, "No, I want you to read me two books." (Man, I hope she doesn't end up being a lawyer...She's just plain bad at negotiating.)

Anyway, after all that, and aftere three hundred hugs and kissess, and figuring out what animal she should sleep with, I feel like my day is done...I just want to vedge out in front of the TV.

But, as I've said, recently she's FINALLY realized that she's not in lock down. She gets out of bed and tells me, "I'm not tired." (Throw in tantrum to show that she really is overly-tired.)

But I can deal with that at her bedtime. She's not gotten out of bed more than three times. So I imagine I'm quite lucky. But then....

Last night at around 3 a.m. I felt someone staring at me. I swear to God I had no idea where I was, who I was, what was happening. I honestly thought maybe I was having a nightmare. Or getting robbed.

But, nope. It was The Dictator who told me she didn't want to sleep in her bed. Somehow, she had made it down the long hallway, in the dark, walked around to my side of the bed, and found my face - all in the pitch black.

She basically scared the crap out of me. I just pulled her up and we fell asleep. That was until The Fiance lost it, because apparently he only had two-inches of bed. He stormed out sometime around 5 a.m. and headed somewhere else to sleep.

So, basically, I guess what I'm saying is that, well, I hope this isn't the new routine. I mean, I've just managed to stop sleeping in her bed..but now she's in mine....

Happy V-Day!

Friday, February 09, 2007

Tears and Tissue

I'm not sure what's wrong with me.

After I had The Dictator, I've become a super emotional person. I swear, I NEVER used to cry. Not at movies, not at those long distance phone calls, not even when a boy said something that hurt my feelings.

But once that kid came out of me, well, it was water works all the time. A lot of it had to do with Post Partum after her birth, which, thankfully, I got through.

But, she's now three years old and things that NEVER would have made me cry, now make me cry. Or at the very least tear up.

Take for example American Idol. I swear, it's like an emotional rollercoaster for me. When the contestants are thrilled, I almost cry. When they are so disappointed, I also tear up. I mean, for godssake, it's American Idol. (I also get sad thinking about how many millions of people actually believe they have talent...But that's a whole other issue.)

When I read certain books, I now tear up. Movies too. Oh, and weddings. I seriously teared up at my cousins wedding recently. What the fuck is going on?

There are certain things, of course, that come with age. Like, when I turned 30 I actually had to start working out to get those love handles to go away. Which bites.

And now, my period has also gotten worse. I wonder if this has to do with age, or because I had a baby. Last period, I could barely walk I was in so much pain. And, um, talking about emotions, well, let's just say I was a disaster. You so did NOT want to be around me about two weeks ago.

Ok, every woman hates it when a guy says to them, "Are you on your period?" when you lose it on them.

Well, last time, I was complaining and bitching and crying about something and The Fiance said, "Is this because you're getting your period?"

To which I started to lose it even more and started to yell, "NO! THIS IS NOT BECAUSE I'M FUCKING GETTING MY....ok, maybe it is."

I know I've always been the type of person to wear my heart on my sleeve. I think I've always been the one to say "I love you," first. But the tears? Man, oh, man. There are so many commericals that make me tear up too. THEY ARE COMMERCIALS!!

I just got back from a three day trip from Toronto. I snuck into my daughter's room at 1 a.m. and kissed her on the cheek.

"Mommy!" she screamed and gave me the biggest hug ever. EVER. EVER! I cried. I did. Even thinking about it now is making me tear up.

So, if I'm this emotional now (And, no, I'm not on my period, or getting it any time soon) what the hell am I going to be like when I'm 50?

I don't know. But can you please pass me a tissue?