From The Mouths of Babes to the Pages of a Children’s Book

How this working mom was inspired to write and self-publish her own book

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Photo by Kimera Gimson, Creekside Photography
Photo by Kimera Gimson, Creekside Photography

Hi, I’m Gabrielle Martin, but everyone calls me Gabe (I know, it’s a bit unconventional for a girl, but it’s mine).  I’m a 37-year old working mother of two from Springfield, Missouri.  I’m not a blogger, I’m just a mom with a story that I want to share with you; a story about how one simple, everyday moment with my daughter inspired me to write a book.

As a busy mom, it’s all too easy to get swept up into the current of routine, seemingly defined by our children and our jobs.  This is where I found myself last year- wondering who I was besides Alivia and Colette’s Mom or the girl that plans over-the-top events;  and then one night I experienced an absolute epiphany (a ‘divine assignment’ a friend called it).  While snuggling with my youngest, Colette (4y/o at the time), she laid her tiny hand on my chest and sweetly said, “Hold My Hand, Mama.”  I kid you not it was like an alarm went off in my brain and I immediately thought to myself, “How many times throughout my daughters’ lives will they say those words?”  In that very moment I knew that I had the title –and concept- for a children’s book.  I’d never written a book in my life, nor did I have the first clue where to begin, but I knew I had to make it happen, and I was going to take a stab at being a self-published author.

My motivation for pursuing this ‘divine assignment’ reached far beyond producing a children’s book.  I wanted to create something for my children that had no expiration date; a literary journey that they could share with their children and future generations.  I wanted my girls to see themselves in the pages, so much so that some of the illustrations in the book are derived from actual photographs of their’ ‘firsts.’ 

The mother-daughter moments illustrated throughout the book are timeless, and resonate with all women, whether you’re a daughter, a mother or a grandmother.  From a child’s first steps to her mother’s last, the reader experiences the milestones that define motherhood to its tender core, and nothing brings me more joy than watching a reader feel all the feels.  In fact, I was so overwhelmed by the emotional responses to the book that I started recording women reading it out loud, and eventually incorporated those reactions into this video: Hold My Hand, Mama- Launch Video

Since the book release in January of this year, I have been inundated with the same question from fellow moms: “Where did you find the time to write a book, and how did you do it?” Let me tell you ladies, the process was like birthing a child, at times (i.e. months of stressing about what it will become, wondering what others will think, losing sleep, etc.).  I was a bundle of nerves and excitement the days leading up to the release, to the point of running my immune system straight into the ground.  All of that aside, I learned a lot about the process; but more importantly I learned a ton about myself, making this labor experience worth every waking moment.

Hold My Hand, Mama is currently available on Amazon (Kindle and Paperback), and the hardcover edition will make its debut in May of 2020- just in time for Mother’s Day!  Please enjoy this little treasure and share it with everyone you hold dear.


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