May 14, 2009

The Birth Book: Everything You Need to Know to Have a Safe and Satisfying Birth

By William Sears, MD and Martha Sears, RN

This book is, of course, a classic, and I've read it a couple of times before.

What I noticed reading through (most of) it this time was the spirit of it: it's a spirit of fighting for what you want/believe is right, and of seeking for the information you need. And the Searses believe that they know what you should want/believe is right/information you need. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but I can see how it might feel judging to some people in some circumstances, which I'm not sure I've seen or understood before.

I was interested in the biochemical/mechanical explanation of why relaxation in labor is important to pain coping. It makes sense; and I still kind of wonder about the emphasis on relaxation. My personal experience tells me that no matter how relaxed I am, I'm still going to experience cervical stretching as painful, and that for me, more active pain coping practices will work better.

But I'm not the only kind of person in the world. And so I'm inspired to keep working to improve my ability to help women labor who need more active ways of laboring, and those who need my help or encouragement to relax.

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