When I was pregnant the first time, I knew I wanted a natural, unmedicated birth, but I was afraid of how much it would hurt and I was unsure whether I would be able to manage it. I was working at a women’s hospital at the time, and I rarely ever saw any non-medicalized births. On the infrequent occasions that a woman did have a natural birth, she was talked about in awed, hushed tones. The message was clear that most women wouldn’t or couldn’t “do that”.
I remember sharing my fears with a dear friend of mine, and the next day she brought me her well-worn copy of the classic Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth and suggested I read it. I devoured that book over the next two days. Ina May’s stories educated, inspired, and helped me feel strong and capable of birthing my baby naturally.
I’m excited to tell you that now there’s another book to add to the short reading list of expectant mothers wanting to birth naturally.
Shannon Brown from Growing Slower has just published a wonderful collection of 26 natural birth stories, Natural Birth Stories: The Real Mom’s Guide to an Empowering Natural Birth. These stories are written by the mamas themselves and run the gamut from unassisted birth, home birth, hospital birth, birth in birth centres, and VBAC (vaginal birth after c-section). Interspersed between these stories are helpful chapters on taking charge of your birth, how to find the right midwife or obstetrician for you, childbirth classes, pregnancy exercise and nutrition, birth plans, the importance of your birth support team, birth kits and hospital bags, pain management strategies, and some common complications that might come up.
I’ve had two unmedicated births of my own, including one at home, but reading other women’s natural birth stories helps to remind me all over again how strong my body is and how grateful I am for my birthing experiences. The candid stories are gritty at times, but they’ll give you realistic expectations, tips, and strategies for your own natural birth. Whether you’re an experienced mama or you’re just starting to consider a natural birth, I highly recommend this book.
Shannon is an architect turned full-time wife, mama, and writer. She has discovered great joy in living simply and naturally, as she and her husband grow their family. At GrowingSlower.com, Shannon encourages her readers to do the same, as she shares about topics including pregnancy, birth, parenting, and simple living. Inspired by her own two natural home birth experiences, Shannon seeks to empower women to give birth naturally. Shannon and her husband are parents to one energetic toddler boy and one peaceful baby girl.
You can buy your own copy of Natural Birth Stories: The Real Mom’s Guide to an Empowering Natural Birth in paperback, Kindle, EPUB, or PDF editions. Until November 18, save 20% with code MOMMYBIRTH.
Shannon has kindly offered two of my readers their own ebook edition of Natural Birth Stories (Kindle, EPUB, or PDF). Enter to win in the Rafflecopter widget below. This giveaway is open worldwide, 18+. Entries will be verified.
Giveaway is now closed. Congratulations, Katy and Laura!
Disclosure: I received a sample item for review purposes. All opinions expressed are completely honest and my own, based on my personal experience. Your experience may differ. This post contains affiliate links. This West Coast Mommy is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.