It's easy for me to forget now how overwhelming it was to be expecting for the first time, and then to bring our baby home and feel like I had no idea how I could be supposed to know how to take care of this tiny person.
|Do I look like I've got it together or what?|
Update: The husband points out that this is not what our couch at the time looked like. I do not know where we are or whose couch it is. But I am asleep on it.
But, I've always been a reader. And I tried to prepare myself as best I could by reading. Some books I liked more than others, and some have proven especially helpful over the ten years since the above photo was taken.
People have asked me to share my favorites, as recently as today (Hi, Kirsten!) so here they are, broken down by topic. Clicking on the link will take you to Amazon*.
- Husband-Coached Childbirth by Dr. Robert Bradley
- Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way by Susan McCutcheon-Rosegg
Both of these are pretty serious attachment parenting books. I really needed to read books like these to get myself into the mindset of devoting myself to motherhood. They are not for everyone, but they worked for me, and I still practice attachment parenting with my babies.
- Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Dr. Marc Weissbluth
- Discipline That Lasts a Lifetime by Dr. Ray Guarendi (He also has a newer book called Raising Good Kids)
- Compass by James Stenson (or any of his other excellent books and booklets)
- How To Really Love Your Child by Dr. Ross Campbell (and How To Really Love Your Angry Child for not necessarily angry, but more challenging kids)
The first is a really lovely, practical guide on how to introduce the Catholic faith to children. The second is more aspirational. It was first published in 1957 and seemed not all that relevant to me when I first read it eight years ago. (She has suggestions that include bread dough and chicken manure.) But I have grown into it (I actually made bread dough for pizza tonight and for the past two years I have had access to chicken manure!)
Neither of these is a parenting book per se, but both have made me a much more effective parent, by helping me become a better person.
So, what do you think? Have you read these, do you like them? What did I miss?
* Full disclosure on the Amazon links: clicking on a title from any of my posts will take you to Amazon, if you buy that title (or anything else) after clicking through my blog I get a (very small) percentage. So far I have made . . . two cents. Literally two cents! Awesome.