I'm Just Happy to Be Here: A Memoir of Renegade Mothering

I'm Just Happy to Be Here: A Memoir of Renegade Mothering

From the creator of the blog "Renegade Mothering," Janelle Hanchett's forthright, wickedly funny, and ultimately empowering memoir chronicling her tumultuous journey from young motherhood to abysmal addiction and a recovery she never imagined possible.

At 21, Janelle Hanchett embraced motherhood with the reckless self-confidence of those who have no idea what they're getting into. Having known her child's father for only three months, she found herself rather suddenly getting to know a newborn, husband, and wholly transformed identity. She was in love, but she was bored, directionless, and seeking too much relief in too much wine.

Over time, as she searched for home in suburbia and settled life, a precarious drinking habit turned into treacherous dependence, until life became car seats and splitting hangovers, cubicles and multi-day drug binges--and finally, an inconceivable separation from her children. For ten years, Hanchett grappled with the relentless progression of addiction, bouncing from rehabs to therapists to the occasional hippie cleansing ritual on her quest for sobriety, before finding it in a way she never expected.

This is a story we rarely hear--of the addict mother not redeemed by her children; who longs for normalcy but cannot maintain it; and who, having traveled to the bottom of addiction, all the way to "society's hated mother," makes it back, only to discover she will always remain an outsider.

Like her irreverent, hilarious, and unflinchingly honest blog, "Renegade Mothering," Hanchett's memoir speaks with warmth and wit to those who feel like outsiders in parenthood and life--calling out the rhetoric surrounding "the sanctity of motherhood" as tired and empty, boldly recounting instead how one grows to accept an imperfect self within an imperfect life--thinking, with great and final relief, "Well, I'll be damned, I'm just happy to be here."

Title:I'm Just Happy to Be Here: A Memoir of Renegade Mothering
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780316503778
Format Type:

About Janelle Hanchett

Janelle Hanchett created the website "Renegade Mothering" in 2011 because she needed to know if the rest of the mothering world was crazy or she was. Writing after her kids went to bed and while she was supposed to be working, Janelle attracted an audience of hundreds of thousands of readers. She holds a BA in English from University of California at Davis and an MA in English literature from Sacr


    I'm Just Happy to Be Here: A Memoir of Renegade Mothering Reviews

  • Lea Grover

    When I got my ARC I was ridiculously excited to get started, and I devoured this book in a matter of hours.There is only one word that comes to mind just described "I'm Just Happy to Be Here": ruthles...

  • Jena Henry

    Sometimes we read a book for fun, such as a book we take to the beach. Sometimes we choose a book because we are in the mood for something scary, or we like to solve mysteries, or we want to learn mor...

  • Mel

    Yo-yo-ing between bouts of sobriety & inebriation, but always depressed, Janelle is loud with hints of Janet Capron’s wild side and the harsh but oft sarcastic tones of Myriam Gurba. Here's a stella...

  • Lisa

    I was fortunate to read an advance copy of I'm Just Happy to Be Here. It is a beautiful, heartbreaking, and wickedly funny book. Janelle's is a coming of age story but also coming of family and coming...

  • Paige

    I am not a former drug addict. I am not a recovering alcoholic. I also don't have four kids. But somehow this book resonated with me on so many levels.Having known Janelle since 2010, and having been ...

  • Ada

    SHE DID IT! Seriously I was waiting for this ever since I found her blog. ...

  • Amy Smith

    I had the privilege of receiving an advance reader copy of this book and devoured it in three days. It is different than what I expected. Janelle is humorous and irreverent and sometimes even aggressi...

  • Stephany Snell

    I was lucky enough to receive an Advanced Copy of ‘I’m Just Happy To Be Here’ by Janelle Hanchett which is a brutally honest, raw and uncut story of the author’s struggles with addiction and m...

  • Vikki Reich

    This book is one of the best memoirs I've read in a long time. Not only in the story compelling, but the writing is beautiful. Though this is a book about addiction and motherhood, it goes beyond that...

  • Jeffrey Rosenberg

    I knew nothing of Janelle’s story until now, but have become inspired by how she made it through and emerged in a place of love, honesty and gritty humor. All I know now is that I must find a “Goo...