Saturday, May 5, 2012

ENDED Review & Giveaway: How to Love Your Labour by Tracey Rose

My "baby" girl is going to be three years old in a couple weeks, and I know that my baby making days are behind me. But...if I had it to do over again, or if by some freak of nature and circumstance I found myself pregnant again, I think I would do a few things differently. Therefore I was intrigued when I was offered the opportunity to review the ebook How to Love Your Labour, by Tracey Rose. Love it? Really? I'm not sure I ever considered that was a possibility.

Not that I exactly regret my past decisions. I was blessed with four healthy babies after all, and my labors and deliveries were nothing too terribly traumatic. They were all rather "medical", and there was nothing natural about them, but I was fine with that at the time. I wanted only to get by with minimal pain, muss and fuss. I was induced for each birth for various reasons ranging from pre-eclampsia to fear of not getting to the hospital in time (I was dilating without having painful contractions - in fact, with babies 2,3, and 4, I was 7 cm dilated when I arrived at the hospital to be induced).

Looking back, I wonder what it would have been like had I done things differently. With my first I had pre-eclampsia, so it was important to be induced for safety reasons. But with the others, I made it to 7 cm with no pain and really, without truly being in labor. So I do wonder what would have happened if I had just let nature take its course. Would I have wound up one of those women you see on television who thinks she needs to go to the bathroom and winds up delivering a baby in the toilet? Or would my body have eventually given me clues that I needed to get to the hospital? I was so afraid of pain that I just focused on avoiding it. And I was not interested in a home birth (the mess!). So the answer for me was agreeing to be induced (at the suggestion of my ob/gyn, who is a wonderful, kind doctor - I am in no way disparaging him) and utilizing epidurals for pain avoidance.

With Bethany, I was 3-4 cm dilated when I arrived at the hospital for my induction. I decided to hold off on the epidural as long as I could, so with the pitocin drip going, I was soon experiencing pretty strong contractions (slightly worse than really bad menstrual cramps). Looking back, I actually think I was about ready to push by the time they gave me the epidural, and then they turned it off without telling me when I did begin to push a short time later. My retained placenta, which was close to being surgically removed, was the worst and most painful part of the entire process. I have no doubt I could have done without the epidural, since I was barely able to enjoy its benefits, but it was like a crutch to me. With my subsequent pregnancies, I was very focused on avoiding the uncomfortable circumstances of my first labor and delivery, and I had a doctor who was willing to oblige me by giving me an epidural just as soon as my pitocin drip started. So I got through relatively pain-free, although years later I still have discomfort from my episiotomies.

As I started reading Tracey's book, I began to truly consider that I could have handled natural childbirths. Even though it's too late for me, it might not be too late for you. If you are like me and want simply to avoid pain, you are likely discounting the natural childbirth option altogether. But How to Love Your Labour made me realize that it is possible to have a natural childbirth and a pain free childbirth.

Throughout the book, Tracey shares her story and her tips for having a beautiful and pain free natural labor and delivery. Her story is inspiring and eye opening. You don't hear many stories like hers; stories of natural childbirth that don't involve a whole lot of pain, suffering, and endurance. I have to wonder if that's because, in the fast paced modern world we live in, the focus is on getting her done as quickly and efficiently as possible. Most people don't have the patience to let nature take its course and for the laboring mother to go with the flow, without medical interference to speed things up and make the birth "easier".

Even though I'm not pregnant, nor do I ever plan on being pregnant again, I still enjoyed reading Tracey's book, and I know that you will too. Tracey is not preachy at all, and is very respectful of different choices pregnant women make. If you are pregnant or plan on having a baby in the future, the book will be even more beneficial to you. I am happy to spread the message that childbirth doesn't have to be a painful, scary experience, even when you choose to go the natural route.

And...I am excited to offer my readers the opportunity win a copy of Tracey's book, How to Love Your Labour! Please enter below using Rafflecopter.

I received a complimentary copy of How to Love Your Labour for review purposes.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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