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NYAM Author Night: Motherhood Exaggerated Highlights a Caregiver's Struggles

On April 16, Judith Hannan presented her memoir, Motherhood Exaggerated, at a NYAM Author Night Series event co-sponsored by the Arnold P. Gold Foundation. The book chronicles Ms. Hannan’s experiences as the mother of eight-year-old Nadia, who was diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma, a rare bone cancer (Nadia is now 20 years old and healthy). In powerful and unflinchingly honest prose, Ms. Hannan exposes the overwhelming range of emotions she experienced while caring for Nadia during her illness. In addition to sharing a chapter from the book, she revealed the ways in which the ordeal ultimately helped her grow as a mother.

“I realized the qualities I needed to help her through it were the qualities I wanted to have as a mother anyway—that was the mother I wanted to be,” Ms. Hannan said. Before, “I lacked humor, I was moralistic, and it was hard for me to make myself vulnerable. I had to learn how to laugh and become softer.”

Following the reading, Sandra O. Gold, President and CEO of the Arnold P. Gold Foundation, announced that Motherhood Exaggerated is published by CavanKerry Press, on the Laurel Books imprint co-sponsored by the Gold Foundation and dedicated to exploring the many poignant issues associated with confronting serious physical and/or psychological illness. Dr. Gold spoke of the importance of “bringing the voice of the caregiver and the patient’s experience to those in the process.”

Judith Hannan’s essays have appeared in such publications as Woman’s Day, The Healing Music, The Martha’s Vineyard Gazette, and Mom Writers Literary Magazine, among others. She is a judge for the Arnold P. Gold Foundation’s Humanism-in-Medicine essay contest. Ms. Hannan lives is New York City where she leads writing workshops for homeless mothers and at-risk teens and serves on the boards of the Mt. Sinai Adolescent Health Center, Mt. Sinai Global Health, and the Children’s Museum of Manhattan.

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Posted on April 17, 2012

Gina Ravosa
Director of Marketing & Communications
The New York Academy of Medicine
1216 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10029
(212) 822-7285


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