“This book is important to every mother and daughter, and to every woman who wants to be one.” —Maya Angelou
I was a not-so-young DJ on a decidedly youth-driven New York City radio station (Z100) when a series of crises led me to do the unthinkable: move to the Bible Belt – “Greensboring,” North Carolina – to care for my ailing, estranged, hoarder mother. Everyone predicted Operation Mama Jo would be a disaster. My therapist suspected I had Rescuer Syndrome. My friends staged an intervention. Even Mama Jo wasn’t sure it would work. What followed was an unforgettable roller-coaster ride with my mother and her enormous doll collection, my born-again brother, the laid-back South, and first-time home ownership – plus a few drag queens along the way. It proved to be a magical, hilarious, and, at times, heartbreaking antidote to heal a long-fractured family. Most surprising, what I feared would be some of the worst years of my life turned out to be some of the best. The same was true for Mama Jo. By the way, there’s nothingboring about Greensboro.
The 2014 paperback and digital versions of When I Married My Mother contain an author interview, Mama Jo’s Favorite Cookie recipe, caregiving tips, and the discussion questions here.
To see more of Mama Jo and her infamous doll collection watch The Doll Dilemma here.