Nurture the Wow

Nurture the Wow: Finding Spirituality in the Frustration, Boredom, Tears, Poop, Desperation, Wonder, and Radical Amazement of Parenting


Every day, parents are bombarded by demands. The pressures of work and life are relentless; our children’s needs are often impossible to meet; and we rarely, if ever, allow ourselves the time and attention necessary to satisfy our own inner longings. Parenthood is difficult, demanding, and draining. And yet, argues Rabbi Danya Ruttenberg, if we can approach it from a different mindset, perhaps the work of parenting itself can offer the solace we seek.

Rooted in Judaism but incorporating a wide-range of religious and literary traditions, Nurture the Wow asks, Can ancient ideas about relationships, drudgery, pain, devotion, and purpose help make the hard parts of a parent’s job easier and the magical stuff even more so. Ruttenberg shows how parenting can be considered a spiritual practice, and how seeing it that way can lead to transformation. This is a parenthood book, not a parenting book; it shows how the experiences we have as parents can change us for the better. Enlightening, uplifting, and laugh-out-loud funny, Nurture the Wow reveals how parenthood, in all its crazy-making, rage-inducing, awe and joy-filled moments can actually be the path to living fully, authentically, and soulfully.


“Profound… a wise book [whose] ideas keep stirring after the last page is turned.”

- Chicago Tribune

“…Relatable to practitioners of all faiths. This is great gift for parents-to-be or new parents who are wrestling with how to stay grounded and maintain their spirituality in the hectic early years of raising a family.”

- Publishers Weekly

“In her inimitable style – sometimes sassy, other times soft and reflective, Ruttenberg tills the soil of [parents’] inner landscape.”


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