by: Aviva Jill Romm
This is my new FAVORITE pregnancy book. This book, written by a midwife with 20+ years of experience, takes a whole-person, wellness-focused view of pregnancy that I found very reassuring. (In my opinion, the opposite of this book is the ubiquitous What to Expect When You’re Expecting, which seems to focus on everything that could possibly go wrong during pregnancy!) I loved the author’s calm tone of voice in her writing, her serene joy at the concept of a new life beginning, and her commonsense solutions to many of the irritations and problems that can happen in pregnancy. While most pregnancy books focus on the growing baby (and I love those kinds of books, too), not a lot of books focus solely on the changes the mother experiences during pregnancy, both emotional and physical. There is ONE short chapter on how your baby grows; that’s it. The rest of the book is about mom. Ahh. 🙂
By far, my favorite part of this book is the second half, when she addresses various problems that can come up with pregnancy. She explains each problem in simple, easy-to-understand language, then offers 3 types of solutions: first some commonsense remedies, secondly some nutritional remedies, and finally some herbal remedies. I used very few of her herbal remedies, but I used lots of the commonsense and nutritional remedies. This section often offered me more help than my OB-GYN did! I cannot tell you how many times I looked up things in that part of book.
One unexpected benefit of this book was its chapter on miscarriage. When I lost my baby in spring of 2006, I consulted the miscarriage section frequently to learn what to expect in terms of cramping and bleeding, and how to best heal once it was over. Like the rest of the book, the chapter on miscarriage is compassionately written, and it was extremely helpful to me during that difficult time.
My only slight criticism of the book is the few nebulous “spiritual” references that the author makes in the book. But those references are passing and minor, they are definitely not a focus of the book, and I would still unhestitatingly recommend this book to any pregnant woman.
Another book by Aviva Jill Romm that I own and find useful is Naturally Healthy Babies and Children: A Commonsense Guide to Herbal Remedies, Nutrition and Health. It’s full of more commonsense ideas for dealing with common childhood issues. For each problem, there are basic remedies, nutritional remedies, and herbal remedies. I consult with it frequently when Lyd or J are sick.
Finally, a good book for post-partum women by Aviva Jill Romm is Natural Health after Birth: The Complete Guide to Postpartum Wellness. This book is good for focusing on taking care of yourself after birth while nurturing your baby as well. It’s got good advice for taking care of the usual post-partum complaints, as well as lots advice that enables you to really rest and take care of yourself following birth so that your body can heal, so that you and your baby can bond, and so that breastfeeding can get off to as good of a start as possible.