Posts tagged ‘pregnant’

January 25, 2011

At some point, the baby has to come out

And that’s when you get Dr. Sears’ Birth Book.  Well, actually, it’d be better to get it a few months earlier than that…

Title: The Birth Book
Author: William Sears, M.D. and Martha Sears, R.N.
Genre: Parenting

Summary and Review: If you’ve read my other posts on parenting books, you know that books that don’t yell at me are what I like the best.  This book doesn’t yell, which I appreciate.  I do go back and forth on my feelings about the Sears family and their empire of books.  I think it’s always dangerous when one entity, even if the entity is a whole family not one individual, has so much influence.  Their “Baby Book” which I used as my bible the first year, still really pisses me off in places…but that’s for another post, I suppose.  I really like this book.  The “bias” is toward a natural birth, but the tone of the book is respectful and describes very thoroughly hospital procedures and the role of modern medicine.  And since every other book you read is likely to be hospital-doctor-medication-leaning (unless you are really seeking out a natural or home birth), this is a good one to read some of the other arguments.

They walk a fine line between describing birth as a natural process and talking about a woman’s body as something that is built for birth, rather than something that has to endure it and talking about the modern hospital setting and the things that it has to offer.  In other words, a woman’s body is strong, powerful, and capable and medication or a necessary C-section might make it even better.  As an example, I really liked a line about the use of an epidural–that they have seen an epidural used really well at the end of labor to calm down an anxious mom and help labor progress more quickly as a result.  In other words, while they value natural birth and think it has it advantages for woman and babies, they don’t view women who turn to medication and other intervention as failures.  They view them as women trying to have a baby, which seems logical.

They also talk about C-sections and when they are really necessary.  Now, they don’t really agree with planned C-sections or inductions that aren’t truly indicated, but they do talk about them.  They give a lot of time to VBACs and even talk about home birth VBACs.

Honestly, I don’t think there is much that is likely to happen during a birth that isn’t in some way covered in this book.  I highly recommend.

January 24, 2011

I’m pregnant–and what’s happening?

The overstuffed bookshelves at every store are proof that when women get pregnant, they all have questions. And they look for answers in the wide array of books their bookstore has to offer.  Being someone with a lot of questions as well as someone who likes to research answers, I’ve read a lot of these books.  My book repertoire was increased with number two, given that all my pregnancy books from number one were stashed away in storage, three thousand miles away and thus pretty much unreachable.  So I got a few new ones, and this is one of the ones I liked.

Title: I’m Pregnant!
Author: Lesley Regan, MD
Genre: Parenting

Summary and Review: It has pictures!  Good photos are my favorite part of a nice research book.  Photos that help illustrate something and make it more readable.  I really appreciated and enjoyed the photos and detailed medical drawings in this book. The book’s sciencey feel was nice–she describes what’s going on, and shows you with pictures.

The scope of the book is also great.  It covers diet and exercise, rights for the working mother, prenatal care and the choices you can make (which is so wonderfully unbiased–thank you!), growth and development of the baby throughout the trimesters, labor and birth, and even things after birth such as the physical recovery of mom and feeding the baby.  This part is great, because I’ve talked to a lot of first-time moms who read all the pregnancy books but hadn’t started the baby books yet–and then they had this hungry, squirming thing and so many more questions!  So it’s nice that you will get an overview of some of those topics while you are reading your pregnancy book.

The book’s author writes in a nicely balanced, nonjudgmental tone, which I really appreciated.  That said, it is a book by a doctor and it assumes a hospital birth in a fairly modern-traditional way.  However, she expresses a balanced position on pain medication and uses “doctor or midwife” to describe the provider.  She doesn’t set out to make anyone feel bad about choice they are going to make, unlike some authors I’ve read.

I enjoyed the book, and even though I’ve done it before, I found it reassuring to follow along as my pregnancy progressed.