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Recommended reading - Your Doula's Favourites

I remember when I was pregnant with our first baby - I couldn't get enough of anything to do with birth. At that time, I had my trusty week-by-week almanac with pictures of baby development that I would look forward to flipping each week. There was no such thing as podcasts and websites and social media were still in development, just chat rooms and personal stories

Now we are blessed with almost TOO MUCH information out there, in its many formats. It can be hard to cancel out all of the noise, and get to information that you can really connect to

I completed my doula training with Vicki at Doula Training Academy, and part of our assessment was to complete a book review. Here is a link to where each student's review is published;

Throughout all of my training in the birth space, I have read fairly broadly. Though one particular book takes the prize of my absolute favourite. It isn't just relevant to birth - every person on the face of the earth needs to read it. It will take you on a HERstoric journey that will be mind blowing, confusing, empowering and really put into perspective our modern industrial birthing model. It will also give you a clear idea of where you may or may not fit into it and how to navigate it


This is but one of many titles written by Dr Sara Wickham. She shares such a wealth of knowledge and cuts through all of the non-evidence-based crap that is still routinely spat by our industrial birthing system. In Your Own Time is one of my particular favourites as it explores the ridiculous rates of induction of labour and the fallacies which perpetuate it. Almost half of births are induced, which begins a cascade of intervention, often ending in highly medicated and surgical birth. What we do know is that with this increasing level of induction, we are not seeing any better outcomes. Almost 1 in 2 of you will be faced with decisions about artificially starting labour, make sure that you have as much information as you can before you make any choices! This is also ESSENTAIL READING! (Not sure why this hasn't formatted the same as the other links)

As I approached my second birth, I was hungry for stories of women who had intervention in their first births, and how their second births turned out. By this stage is was studying Midwifery so was a little more connected and aware of what was out there. What I loved about this next book was the birth stories. There are so so many and the best part about it, was the statistics. These were at complete odds with what I was witnessing in hospital birth placements around the Perth metro area

Finding practical strategies for birth was my next stop. As my first baby was in a bit of a dodgy position, my birth ended up needing some extra intervention. I wanted to avoid this with my subsequent pregnancy so got onto this beauty. It is written by a physiotherapist and birth educator, and covers how to work with your body optimally in preparation for birth and during

Birth is often treated like "one size fits all" when in reality we are all very different. Every birth is different. Expecting Better covers how to navigate this industrial birth approach and come to a place where you can make confident decisions that feel right for you

As someone who was diagnosed with an auto-immune condition following the birth of my 3rd child, this book has been invaluable for me in my fourth trimesters

Written in the 70s, this is one of the most influential birth books EVER. It begins with birth stories, and the common thread throughout is the trust that must be reclaimed in birth and our innate ability for us to birth. The sharing of positive birth stories is so powerful!

Breastfeeding was a vastly different experience with each and every one of my 4 kids. Between each of these individual journeys, despite all of my in-depth training and knowledge, I came up against many challenges. I came to the point where I could totally understand women who had decided that it wasn't for them. Our modern postpartum 'care' fails so many women and families, so finding your own information and support is a must. The rates of breastfeeding are super low - and this isn't because our bodies lack the ability- it is because we lack the support. This book is a beautiful mix of information and stories helps you to understand breastfeeding and overcome any that you may face obstacles

This was my absolute favourite book when preparing for my first birth. I found it at an op shop and read it multiple times cover to cover. This would have to be credited for helping me stay focused and birth my first baby (and subsequent 3) epidural-free.

There are so many other epic book out there and it is impossible to list them all here. Stopping and slowing down to take in a book is one of the best ways to prepare to meet your baby and in your journey to becoming a Mother xx

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