Yesterday, I read The Childbirth Kit. This had been on my wishlist at Amazon for literally years, so I finally went ahead and bought it for myself (my husband bought a mini-amp for his guitar at the same time and we decided they were sort of like anniversary presents. Our tenth wedding anniversary is coming up in less than two weeks!) Anyway, The Childbirth Kit consists of a short book (interesting and concise. Some pieces felt "outdated" because it was written in 1994) and a set of 17 image cards. The cards are the reason I wanted the set. Each one has a colorful image on the front designed for a particular stage of labor (so like water drops on a leaf for early labor or a bright red-orange piece of intricate glass for pushing) and the back has a short visualization exercise to do, ideas of things for the woman to try during labor, ideas for the birth partner to help her, and a series of inspiring/contemplative words that are related to the image on the front. So, for example, one card has the words "Pathways. Mother. Growth. Fertile. Powerful" printed along the bottom (the image on the front is titled "Earth," but it looks more like a woven rug/tapestry). There is even a card titled "Knit." My mom would approve! It is a pretty cool set. The idea is that you practice with the cards, images, visualizations prior to labor and then continue using them IN labor as well (so, pinning on the on the wall to look at, or holding them, or whatever).
This week I also read The Hidden Feelings of Motherhood. This was actually the third time I've read it. I didn't really set out to read it again, I was looking up some stats for an article I was writing and got lured back in to reading the whole thing. It is a good book. We have it in our LLL library (the first time I read it, it was the previous edition and I got it from the LLL Group I used to go to when L was a baby).