Winner of the 2006 Gold Medal Award presented by the Bay Area Independent Publishing Association (BAIPA).
“I wanted to tell the secret stories that my great-grandmother Blanche whispered to me on summer nights in a featherbed in Iowa. I was eight and she was eighty…”
At the age of four, a little girl stands on a cold, windy railroad platform in Wichita, Kansas to watch the train take her mother away. For the rest of her life, her mother will be only an occasional and troubled visitor.
Linda Joy Myers’ compassionate, gripping, and soul-searching memoir tells the story of three generations of daughters who long for their absent mothers, yet unwittingly recreate a pattern that she was determined to break. Accompany Linda as she uncovers family secrets, finds solace in music, and begins her healing journey. Learn how she transcends the prison of childhood to discover light in the darkness of strife, abuse, and undiagnosed mental illness.
Don’t Call Me Mother is an inspiring chronicle of perseverance, healing, and the transformative power of forgiveness.
Read available excerpts:
Tracks to my heart
Blanche: My Great-Grandmother – 1955
The Music Man
Your book is a true gift. Having been abandoned by my mother, and hers before her, I have sought validation for my loss all my life. Your openness and willingness to put it out there and expose the raw hurt will be of help to anyone who is lucky enough to find your book. —Angela Anatasion
“I have long been one of those who avoided dealing with death, who dodged sentiment, who felt that stories about the loss of a loved one were a bit indulgent, a way of saying ‘my pain is greater than your pain.’ That was before I lost my father and my wife lost her mother, both within ten days. And that was before I read Linda Joy Myers’s Don’t Call Me Mother. This is powerful stuff, richly layered, emotional without being manipulative, insightful without being indulgent. It’s a wonderful read and a marvelous examination of life and its inevitable conclusion. I loved it.” —James Dalessandro, author of 1906
“This haunting story chronicles a lonely child’s attempt to understand her complex and difficult family and make sense of a confused and chaotic world. Myers does what a good memoirist always does. She reveals a great deal about herself and, at the same time, helps us to understand more about our own lives.” —Susan Wittig Albert, best-selling author of Writing From Life: Telling Your Soul’s Story
“Could you still love your mother, even if she left you? In this gut-wrenching, poetic memoir, Linda Joy Myers explores three generations of maternal abandonment in her family–and movingly explores her own quest to break the chain.” —Melanie Rigney, former editor, Writer’s Digest
“Linda Joy Myers eloquently renders the details of her past in this transformative memoir, allowing all of us to find redemption through her honest courage. For anyone yearning for self-discovery, Don’t Call Me Mother serves as a compelling guide on a journey to wholeness. I loved the book.” —Michele Weldon, assistant professor, Northwestern University and author of I Closed My Eyes and Writing to Save Your Life
“Today, psychiatry offers medication for genetic bipolar disorders, but there is no way to repair the broken limbs in one’s family tree caused by the disease, save that of retelling the tale with the salve of forgiveness. I admire Linda’s courage and perseverance in writing about the primal pain of mother abandonment.” —Tristine Rainer, author of Your Life as Story: Discovering the New Autobiography and director, Center for Autobiographic Studies
“Linda Joy Myers’ Don’t Call Me Mother is a moving testimony to the resilience of the human spirit and the power of writing to trigger insight and healing. With unerring honesty and painstaking detail, Linda explores and re-experiences her family’s many generations of loss and grief, and in the process frees herself from her history and uncovers her deep ability to love. Her memoir will inspire readers with the courage to record their own inner journeys.” —Elizabeth Fishel, author of Sisters and Reunion: The Girls We Used To Be, the Women We Became, co-editor Wednesday Morning Writers