Rochelle created Beginning Together to celebrate the arrival of her son, Lincoln. With professional training in developmental psychology, her goal was to create a new kind of baby book for herself and others, one that would capture infant behavior through the eyes of child development luminaries. She organized a mothers’ group to test out the concept. As she listened, first hand, to the experiences and concerns shared in the mothers' group, she realized that the real experts were the parents themselves. With eloquence and insight they spontaneously described the same behaviors that had caught the attention of Piaget, Erikson, Brazelton, and other leading experts in child development. Moreover, with self-awareness and candor, they talked about their own development as parents. Based on this experience, Beginning Together: A Diary of Discovery for You and Your Baby (St. Martin's Press) became a parent as well as baby diary, with mothers and fathers serving as guides.
When her son, Theo, was born, Jia felt completely unprepared for her new role as a mother. She found herself always reacting to new developmental changes and scrambling for solutions. She was overwhelmed by information and opinions from family, friends, parent groups, experts and online. She was also frustrated with not dedicating enough time and space to reflect on her own growth as a parent and to capture Theo’s development during this special moment. When she came across Beginning Together with Rochelle acting as her coach, she fell in love with the experience. And since then, she has worked with Rochelle to develop the new Beginning Together—combining guided observations with parent support.
Rochelle and Jia hope that this expanded vision of Beginning Together, with relationship-based journaling, expert-led discussions, anticipatory guidance, and vetted resources, will bring discovery, confidence and joy to the experience of parenting.