Almost immediately after becoming pregnant, I was given a copy of the omnipresent pregnancy text, “What to Expect When You are Expecting.” Required reading for all expecting mothers.
And while I have found it to be a useful and helpful resource in some ways, I have also found that it is a bit oriented towards overly- touchy-feely -friendly advice from women to women. Almost every chapter has sections devoted to how a woman is probably feeling about her changing body, and how to deal with those feelings. Ugh! I appreciate that this might be a real area of focus for some people. But I have been way more interested in the subject of what is actually happening in my body, and how and why.
Like – a pregnant woman’s bones actually grow softer during the course of the pregnancy. A hormone called “relaxin” (no joke) actually make the bones soft to accommodate the pregnancy and prepare for birth. Fascinating!
I have also been more interested in the subject of what we need to know once the baby is born to care for her, and how to try to retain some semblance of our current life together with a baby.
So with that in mind, I would like to share a couple of the other books that I have been reading during this time:
The Mayo Clinic Guide to A Healthy Pregnancy has been a fantastic alternative to What to Expect. It is written by doctors from the Mayo Clinic. And it provides information that is a bit more technical in nature, and provides insight from clinical studies, etc.
Baby Wise is a book that focuses on bringing a baby into your family’s life, and making the baby part of the daily rhythms of the family, instead of letting your family life be blown to bits by the tsunami of a new arrival. I have to say, I love this concept. Although, I will note that the book tends to be a old fashioned and pedantic about the importance of the relationship between parents and mother figures and father figures. But if you can overlook that, the rest of the book has some valuable ideas.
This book was written by the American Academy of Pediatrics, and is a very factual and useful resource about child development. My friend recommended it to me, saying that it was a bit like a having a pediatrician in your home for when you are wondering about whether your baby is normal, or possessed by a banshee at 3 am? It also helps remind you to look out for developmental markers and other important things.
I have had two friend recommend this book to me, and they happen to be the two friends with the happiest most delightful babies I know. Some babies are pretty horrible to be around. Others seem to just be “cool.” Both of my friends swear that their baby’s “cool” factor 100% comes from instituting a schedule with their baby, and making sure the child gets enough rest. Sold!
Have any other recommendations? Let me know in the comments section below!