During the drive this weekend and while I was too tired to do anything in the first trimester, I got to reading and here is what I have so far:
Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth
by Ina May Gaskin
This has been a very reassuring and empowering book to read. The first half of the book is all birth stories, which are all very different but in each, the mother expresses positive emotions about the physical process, despite the pain. The second half goes through describing how a woman’s body prepares and goes through the birth process. Also discussed are complications to the pregnancy, how they are dealt with in the hospital/medical world and how Ina May has dealt with those safely in the natural birth process. I borrowed this book from the library but I think that I am going to buy my own copy because I would like to re-read those birth stories as I get closer to my due date.
On Becoming Babywise: Giving Your Infant The Gift of Nighttime Sleep
by Gary Ezzo
Yes, we realize how controversial this book is. We purchased it on audiobook so that we could listen to it and discuss how we feel about it. Christian has done the research on the main web site for the opposition to this book, and during our date night one week, he gave me a good summary of the viewpoints discussed there. We have not finished the actual audiobook yet, still in process. We tried listening to it on our trip this weekend but the narrator of the audiobook has such a soft, sleepy voice that we kept either falling asleep (me) or tuning her out (him). While we agree with some of the tenets of the book, I can see how some of the things they claim might be a little extreme (“People will stop you on the street to comment on how pleasant your baby is”…really?! I mean, I am new to this, but even I don’t have those unrealistic expectations). To balance out this book’s viewpoint, I am also going to do some reading from the perspective of Attachment Parenting proponents, so that we hear both sides before we make decisions.
The No-Cry Sleep Solution: Gentle Ways to Help Your Baby Sleep Through the Night
by Elizabeth Pantley and William Sears
This book was written by fans of the Attachment Parenting model. Strangely, there are a number of areas in which they agree with Ezzo. I have completely finished this book, it was easy to read. Mostly because it outlines a plan for putting a baby on a schedule gently and gradually and I don’t have a baby yet so I got to just read it without taking any action. I like how it goes over all the possible things that could be keeping your baby from getting good sleep and offers solutions for all of those things. It focuses a lot on being patient and not making the baby do anything that is uncomfortable for it – exactly what you’d expect from attachment parenting model, I guess. But I do like that it is gentle because I think it’s gentle on the parent as well. This is helpful for me to read now, so that I can try all of those things when the baby is here, to make sure it is in a good environment for sleeping. We bought this book also, and I am glad because I do plan to refer to it later.
So there you have it. I have a bunch of other books I want to read but will always take suggestions from anyone else who has kids or knows people with kids who have loved certain books.
Baby update: We went for our first real prenatal visit today and heard the heartbeat again! This time they found it right away, no trouble at all, and it was 163 bpm, whatever that means.