Friday, July 4, 2008


With Marian's health situation stabilized, I'm in full-throttle pregnancy mode: a heady mix of vigorous nesting (reordering playroom & girls' bedroom to carve out a corner for baby), furniture refinishing (when I figure out my new camera card situation, we have great photos of the auction we attended last month), total exhaustion, and reserving and reading stacks of childbirth and breastfeeding books. I used to feel myself quite an expert, but it's been seven years. A realization of just how long that has been was clarified by this: I scoffed at one book for being out of date, then saw it was published after my last birth. I, my friends, am the one out of date. I've been doing a lot of browsing, but just finished one rather excellent book cover-to-cover: Giving Birth: A Journey into the World of Mothers and Midwives by Catherine Taylor. It's definitely a pro-midwife book--no careful unbiased dissertation here--but does allow respect for all women's choices and is carefully researched, not at all an emotional rant. I just got out of bed this morning after reading the conclusion (with some yogurt, of course--I'm a continually-starving pregnant girl through & through!), to write a summary of my favorite parts to my little sister, who has her own new reason to start childbirth research. I'll spare you all of what I wrote, but I loved that Catherine's conclusion emphasized that birth creates not only a baby, but a mother.

Ensuring that birth is an experience during which you realize how powerful,
how strong,
how competent &
how confident
you are makes your mother transformation as integral a part of birth as your baby's safe passage, which does not need to be compromised (look at the statistics) by choosing a situation that allows that powerful woman (me!) to be the primary decision maker in her birth.

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