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The naive notion that a mother naturally acquires the complex skills of childrearing simply because she has given birth now seems as absurd to me as enrolling in a nine-month class in composition and imagining that at the end of the course you are now prepared to begin writing War and Peace.
(Mary Kay Blakely (20th century), U.S. journalist, essayist, author and mother. American Mom, ch. 1 (1994).)
The conscientious mother of this age approaches the birth of her first baby with two ideas firmly in mind. One is that she will raise the baby by schedule. The other, that she will not let it suck its thumb.
(Gladys D. Schultz. originally appeared in "Must Parents Worry About Thumb- sucking?" The Parents Magazine (July 1935). As quoted in Mothering, by Elaine Heffner, ch. 11 (1978).)
Each person is a graveyard of his thoughts. They are most beautiful for us in the moment of their birth; later we can often sense a deep pain that they leave us indifferent where earlier they enchanted us.
(Robert Musil (1880-1942), Austrian author. Diary entry, date uncertain: 1899?-1905/06, vol. I, p. 51, Tagebucher, 2 vols., Ed. Adolf Frise, trans. by Donald C. Rieche, Rowohlt (1976).)
Civil Rights: What black folks are given in the U.S. on the installment plan, as in civil-rights bills. Not to be confused with human rights, which are the dignity, stature, humanity, respect, and freedom belonging to all people by right of their birth.
(Dick Gregory (b. 1932), U.S. comedian, civil rights activist. Dick Gregory's Political Primer (1972).
See also comment by Malcolm X under "race.")
The atmosphere parents wish to create when talking with children about birth and reproduction is warm, honest, and reassuring, one that tells children they are free to ask questions as often as they need to, and you will answer them as lovingly as you know how.
(Joanna Cole (20th century), U.S. author. How You Were Born, p. 8 (1993).)
He knew that he was precisely what he himself would have chosen to be had God consulted him on the subject of his birth; he fully appreciated and approved what had been bestowed, and realized that he couldn't have done the job better himself, in fact he would not have changed a single item.
(Michéal MacLiammóir (1899-1978), Irish actor. "Changes," ch. 4, All for Hecuba (1947).
On first meeting Orson Welles.)