giving back

Zen Mommy Suzanne Tucker Helps Others Accept Themselves

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It is perhaps cliché, but so very true, that out of the hardest moments of our lives often come the most beautiful diamonds. Would that it weren't so, that we didn't have to be "cut" so. Would that we could designate an age, say 30, after which we could all rightfully claim that we've learned all the lessons life has to offer, that we don't need anymore "instructional experiences," and that we're ready to sail on steady waters until we die. To emerge from those bone-crunching trials smoother and more wise is truly something worth celebrating. To emerge actively willing to help others through similar trials is something miraculous. Suzanne Tucker, a.k.a. ZenMommy, is a mother who has done the latter.

Suzanne and friend/business partner Ria

She writes on her blog's About page, "I am a mother of nine, four here on earth and five who got their wings before birth." She has survived the loss of five children through miscarriage, and now mothers her and her husband's nine-year-old, seven-year-old, and two-year-old twins. It was while she was helping a friend who was in labor with her first child that Suzanne met Ria Sharon, who was also waiting out that mutual friend's labor, that a new friendship was born, and from that was born their blog MyMommyManual.com. It is a place of instruction, without the painful experience component. It's instructions pertain mainly to yoga parenting, helping babies sleep better, and providing infant massage and other products and events for moms. It's also a place for a little bit of healing, where other women who've experienced miscarriages can post videos and chat in its "Hopeful Miscarriage" section.

The common theme of what she does in her "ZenMommy" persona is to help others be at peace with themselves. She says, "Facing my demons, loving my light, embracing the chaos and accepting the unacceptable as a parent has led me closer to what I understand to be my life purpose: to know and love myself. I breathe in, I love myself. I breathe out, I am enough. The very same things I’ve bumped up against my whole life, things like guilt, belonging and acceptance in motherhood, take on new meaning and a sort of urgency."

To help others face similar demons, she and her contributors write about and teach real-life classes on centering and soul-to-soul parenting. She is also a physical therapist, vice president and co-owner of a holistic health center in St. Louis, Missouri. And she moonlights as a parenting coach and an Infant Massage Instructor. When asked what parenting product she uses most and most highly recommends, she responds, surprisingly, that it's an iPhone. Because, she says, "If you are feeling isolated, you have to talk to someone. Community is essential to parenting. Essential. You know the saying “It takes a village”? Well, it’s true." That village today is called the blogosphere, and MyMommyManual is a good hut to visit.

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