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Reading group participants have said …

“I’ve so enjoyed these sessions. It’s so great to focus on writing about motherhood rather than parenting. I’ve enjoyed the balance between fiction and non-fiction. Thank you for providing such honest and often raw readings on the journey of motherhood.”

“I did wonder whether it would be more academic than it was and that I wouldn’t have enough to contribute, but that wasn’t my experience.”

“I hadn’t ever seen anything like this that was a place where we’re discussing literature or art but without needing to read an entire book or really commit to something.”

“This course brightened my days, lifted my mood, engaged my brain and helped me to feel seen – just what a new mother needs in the blurry, early days of parenthood”

“It’s been so great to hear so many different perspectives from all the other mums too – such a lovely, interesting group.”

“Thank you so much for your time and for facilitating such an enjoyable and engaging group. I’m ruined for all future Mum & Baby groups!”

“Those sessions both in person before the pandemic and online during , were a complete lifesaver for me. They got me out of the house and to focus on something that wasn’t just checking for milestones. It was so great to have something that required a bit of extra brain power and I ended up buying a lot of the poetry collections of the authors we discussed.”

“Can it be a 9-5 Monday to Friday group?? Thoroughly enjoyed it, looked forward to every session, and each session seemed to fly by so quickly.”

“There’s something lovely about connecting with other mothers and building a language together.”

“Wonderful group. Introduced me to new texts, ideas, discussion points and other mothers. Has made me feel in good company and understood – part of a community of others with shared experiences. Very relaxed group – have been looking forward to coming.”

“I’ve just treated myself to some copies of these books. I’m inspired to read more.”

“The group also gives me time to think through and talk about so many different facets of what it means to (be a) mother, and use my brain whilst doing so, thereby elevating the experience of mothering beyond the routine of the every day (even when the texts are about exactly this) and helping me to really celebrate being a mother. It’s so lovely to have time to reflect on it all, and I would find it impossible to make the time to do so otherwise.”

“It was an opportunity for me to make sense of motherhood, being a new mum. Having those perspectives from other people, and also perspectives from people you won’t meet like the actual authors of the text was really quite nice for me.”

“I really like the different texts we come across and the diversity of it.”

“I loved the incredible discussions that the sessions sparked – it was so interesting hearing different interpretations of the texts and also sharing our shared (and differing!) experiences.”

“I just found it really unique and supportive and validating […] I was initially a bit worried that something in words and on paper might dumb down the experience but it’s done the opposite, it’s opened up and put feelings on paper that I didn’t even realise I had, or expressed things in ways that I just found really helpful to explore. I’ve found it quite emotional but really, really positive […] I go away and I talk about it in the week and share bits of it with my NCT friends and it’s been so powerful to explore really, it’s so unique there’s nothing like this out there and I just think it’s been wonderful […] it’s just been fantastic, I can’t praise it enough.”

“It has really enhanced my journey of having child and in a context that I was very isolated. The sessions were really enlightening. It has been amazing.”

“I was surprised by how easy it was to talk about how I was responding to the text.”

“I felt that I’ve been given lovely reading time, great retreat for myself.”

“The group was intellectually challenging and stimulating and I loved this – so different to much of the rest of my current daily life on maternity leave. It has made me want to read and study more. Rebecca was so warm, engaging and interesting to listen to. I would like to find out about further courses she offers. A huge thank you to Rebecca and Beth. I feel very lucky to have been included in the group.”

“I was searching for literature about motherhood for ages before I found this group.”

“I so loved the group. The opportunities to explore creative work around motherhood and explore our experiences with others. It’s such a unique and amazing opportunity. I wish I could do it regularly in the long term!”

“It was lovely to meet other parents who have different experiences and reflections of the same texts. It also introduced me to writings and authors which I wasn’t aware of before or did not appreciate.”

“It has been very different from other things I’ve done in some ways because it’s been just a bit more structured. A lot of what I’ve spent my time doing is going on walks with other mums, or to coffee shops with other mums and you just talk about your experience. It’s been nice to have a little bit more of an analytical approach and engaging your brain in a different way.”

“I really like the commentary on the text, because it gives you ideas of things to go and find and read when you have time. I really enjoyed that.”

“I’m just really grateful for that kind of return to an intellectual life as well as a physical one.”

“This is just great to sort of intellectualise this experience a little bit and dig into some of the profound feelings I’ve had.”