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Congratulations! You're pregnant! Next step? Buy ten thousand books and try to "prepare" for what to expect.. pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding, parenting, sleep, food, so on and so on. But, which books are the best?
That's a tough question to answer... there are so many wonderful options out there! I'd love to share with you, the books that most prepared me for birth and breastfeeding,
I read these during my first pregnancy, and reviewed them during the second. Both turned out to be polar opposite experiences, but both times I felt so prepared for birth and breastfeeding, and confident that I could handle any curve balls thrown my way. Though the curveballs were tricky, and I struck out a couple times, I ended up hitting a home run on the ever so skilled pitcher named, "Life".
Breastfeeding and Birth are so deeply connected
Breastfeeding and Birth are so deeply connected that I feel it is so important to for mothers to have a fundamental understanding of birth, and tips on how they can be an active participant. While an unmedicated, vaginal delivery is not the only way to be an active participant in birth, these books give a lot of great insight and information to prepare for.
The Birth Partner by Penny Simkin was one of my favorite books to prepare for an involved birth, which is important to breastfeeding. This book was also extremely helpful, not just for me, but also for my husband. It is a great guide for preparing for anything that comes your way.
Ina May's Guide to Childbirth was my absolute favorite book to read for stories of confident mothers believing in their bodies. It was especially inspiring for me when preparing for my VBAC. Reading stories about other women honing their inner strength and overcoming the most difficult challenges in their lives, empowered me both before my cesarean and before my VBAC. Their strength also encouraged me to push through my breastfeeding challenges.
This book will give you a totally different perspective on birth, womanhood, and feminism.
Ina May also has a breastfeeding guide! While I haven't personally read this one yet, I've heard amazing things about it! If it's anything like her guide to Childbirth, I can assure you it will be worth the read.
The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding will forever be my "Boob Bible". This book prepared me for breastfeeding, and when I was actually in the trenches of the postpartum, breastfeeding establishment nightmare I experienced with my eldest son, this book helped me define and overcome my challenges. It also offered a lot of emotional support as it shares anecdotes from other mothers who were experiencing similar feelings as me. This book got me through one of the hardest times in my life,
Sweet Sleep was a wonderful read for me to better understand infant sleeping patterns. This book helped me realize that my baby's behavior was normal because he's operating off of biological programming, not societal programming, If we stop imposing societal expectations on infants and their behavior and development, and start understanding they are primal creatures and we learn how to respect that, I think mothers will have a much smoother transition to this new life.
There are so many more books on the market. Breastfeeding In Combat Boots, is a great resource not just for Military or Law Enforcement moms, but any mom returning to the workplace. Though the information is military specific, so much of it applies to all working moms! Another is Breastfeeding Made Simple, authored by Nancy Mohrbacher, IBCLC, FILCA, whom I had the wonderful opportunity of meeting at a Breastfeeding Conference, by the way. She is such a wealth of information and has numerous resources available for moms, from youtube videos, to books, and every medium in between!
Of course, these are just the books I personally recommend. There are so many more on the market with so much wonderful information.
Which books did you find to be the most helpful in preparing you for your journey into motherhood?
Did you like these suggestions? Share this post on Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter to give your friends some ideas on how to support their breastfeeding friends! Thank you!
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