The bottom line to Mother's Day is that everyone is impacted. Whether you have children, a living mother, are taking care of elderly parents, or grieving your deceased mom, the holiday encompasses a range of people in situations.
Local bloggers seek to represent that cross-section of moms by participating in "Listen to Your Mother"—a national series of live readings staged throughout the country.
On Friday, Lansdowne residents Dresden Shumaker and Cecily Kellogg team up with Wissahickon's Jo-Ann Rogan to present the 15-person Philadelphia installment of "Listen to Your Mother"—held at the William Way Community Center, 1315 Spruce St., Philadelphia.
"Being part of the blogging community, I’ve heard of 'Listen to Your Mother' in other communities," Cecily Kellogg said. "Their areas always have a strong social media presence, and the Philly social media moms are all connected through life, work and entrepreneurship."
The Philadelphians applied to the national show, received permission and held auditions for local acts. On Friday, the mothers will present their original work.
"Several of the pieces actually began as blog posts, but it's such a difference experience in performing something verses just writing it," Shumaker said.
Mothers from all over the Delaware Valley are represented, from Bucks County to Wilmington, DE.
Rogan runs the blog PunkyMama.com. She said organizers sought a variety of contributors to reflect the mom spectrum.
"We have a super diverse cast. It's not like something where you read about mothers. Everyone has a motherhood experience—whether they have moms, are moms, or are even childless women taking care of their moms," she said
Local writers from the Main Line and suburbs are participating, as well. Amanda Domergueis, from Phoenixville, has a 16-month-old son and runs MODGBlog.com.
Helen Reese is from Penn Valley and works for the Ronald McDonald House. She just finished her first novel Project Ex, in which shares her experiences as a single mother returning to the dating scene following her divorce.
Shumaker's point is that "there is no one kind of mother. There are stories that will enrage you, and there are some that make you cry. And all make you say 'Yeah, OK. I get that.'"
Each "Listen to Your Mother" show benefits a local charity. The Philadelphia show is held at William Way Community Center, and a portion of proceeds will go toward that community center's LGBTQ programming.
Check out the entire cast list and where they reside.
- Jennifer Weiner—Queen Village
- Kathy Snead—Passyunk Square section of South Philly.
- Dresden Shumaker—Lansdowne
- Cecily Kellogg—Lansdowne
- Jo-Ann Rogan—Wissahickon
- Amanda Domergue (MODG)—Phoenixville
- Andi Buchanan—Rittenhouse Square South
- Liz Henry—Bucks County
- Shoshana Martyniak—Wilmington, DE
- Angela Canales—University City
- Molly Connors—Lansdowne
- Charlie O’Hay—Lansdowne
- Brandi Jeter—Germantown
- Sandra Tellep—University City