There are so many book recommendations out there that are "must-reads" for the expectant mother that it is difficult to know where to begin. With everybody having individual preferences as to what they are looking for when it comes to reading material, when it came to making my own decisions it was a little tricky to know where to begin.
The best way for me to decide was to literally look at the shelves in my local Waterstone's and pick at random, hoping and praying that what I had chosen was going to be exactly what I had been looking for.
With some being a resounding success (and some not) here are the books I have loved having at my side throughout this exciting, scary, and at some points dramatic journey to motherhood.
This book has been an absolute God-send to me. If there was one thing that was clear to me when I was on the hunt for reading material one thing was clear - I did not wanted to be preached to. And this book is as far from preachy as you could possibly wish to be. Jam-packed full of funny anecdotes and touching memories, this book came in to my life at just the right time. At the beginning, feeling completely un-excited about being pregnant, I felt quite alone. It's a pretty taboo subject I think, to talk about how shit you are finding being up the duff. But when I was sitting there, waiting for the next thing to go wrong and the next hospital visit, The Unmumsy Mum provided that hope that would tell me that I wasn't the only one, and that as time went on, I wasn't going to be the only expectant mother / mum to go through difficult/stressful/ridiculous moments.
Written in the first person, and in no way sugar-coating things, The Unmumsy Mum is a page-turner of a book, and one that I will definitely be referring back to again and again as I embrace motherhood and encounter all those first few three am feeds, poonamis, and days when baby refuses to sleep.
When I posted a picture of this book on my Instagram account, there was a lot of interest about it. I don't really know a lot about mindfulness, but knowing how anxious and stressful I get ( and that I also don't really like hospitals), I decided that perhaps I should give some calming techniques a go before D-day arrives. What do I have to lose after all? If these techniques worked, my mega-chilled labour might become legendary (yeah right)!
Mindful Hypnobirthing is definitely one of those books that you need to refer to constantly. It covers all kinds of hypnosis and calming techniques in quite a lot of detail, which, in one go is a little difficult to remember. But because it is broken down in to three parts, each containing a number of chapters, it is easy enough to find what you are looking for. What I also really like is that there are three downloadable tracks that accompany the techniques and that you can use to practise at home. I have been doing these daily for the past week and am already finding myself shitting a brick less when it comes to thinking about what I have to do to get this baby out when the times comes. If you are open-minded about mindfulness and hypnobirthing, then this book is definitely worth a look.
The only other book I'm really looking forward to getting my hands on is Happy Mum, Happy Baby by Giovanni Fletcher. Even though it comes out in February - a few weeks away from my due date - just from reading the summary I think I'll really enjoy it, for similar reasons as to why I got on with The Unmumsy Mum.
If you have any pregnancy/ parenting book recommendations, please let me know in the comments section. I'd love to extend my collection