Being pregnant can feel like an open invitation for advice from everyone in your life…
There is a LOT of information out there, and while you do get to visit the doctor several times throughout the pregnancy…it’s hard to cram in weeks worth of questions in such a short time.
I often wished I had my care provider on hand to address the little concerns between appointments…
And so Bryn Huntpalmer wrote this book.
It’s written as a question-answer guide, with all of the questions being listed in the front so you can either read the book cover-to-cover or pick-and-choose what you want to learn.
Huntpalmer starts the book with a quick overview of the four trimesters (the fourth being the three months after the child is born), followed by the questions regarding doctors.
From there she goes through emotional/physical symptoms (as well as common ailments).
From there, she focuses on self-care – nutrition, lifestyle and exercise – before transitioning broader – how to handle work leave and preparing for the baby to join your life.
The book then goes into labor and postpartum care (for both mommy and baby), and covers (briefly) pregnancy complications.
There’s a short glossary and a long list of references at the end (which I always LOVE the list of references – something I would definitely make use of in the future).
While I’m not pregnant (and am far off from even considering – thank you crazy world), I do strongly think that this is something to learn about far before the pregnancy happens.
This is a wonderfully thorough handbook and a fascinating read (and marginally horrifying…but that’s just pregnancy for you!).
Turns out eighth grade health class really dropped the ball here.
There were SO many things that I didn’t even realize existed before reading this book! Such as a linea nigra –
Not everyone gets this line or skin darkening, but if you do, it’s totally normal, and there’s nothing you can do to change it.
It’s definitely NOT covered during my sex-ed class and it’s not something I’d even think to google. Who would expect it?
Could you imagine looking down and just finding a LINE down your stomach? Just chilling there? So, I loved learning about things like that.
For the most part, this book is designed for a beginner (i.e. someone like me, who’s functioning on an eighth grade health class of knowledge) and it was interesting to learn about all that happens (there are so many crazy things! Equally fascinating and terrifying).
I do feel like the book assumed some knowledge.
Doulas: Some parents will hire a doula to assist them during the pregnancy.
There were a few times where the book would introduce a term and just continue as if it is an everyday thing. Which, it probably is for the author…but I can honestly count one one hand (nay, one finger) how many times I heard Doula. (Once. When I was reading this book.).
So, I feel like it would’ve been nice to define the more uncommon terms a few times – especially considering this book was designed to be picked up at will (i.e., you have a question and just want the answer to that one specific thing). So, you don’t want to be looking up term after term to answer your single question.
That being said, this was incredibly well-researched and provided answers to so many questions I didn’t have! Really thorough!
With thanks to the author and Rockridge Press for sending me a free copy in exchange for an honest review