Inspirational novels for pregnancy?

2 November 2011 at 10:25 am Leave a comment

When I was pregnant with my first child, I read a lot. I read the standard books on pregnancy and birth, and then their counter-cultural counterparts, and then all the things referenced in all of those, and then anything tangentially referenced in those, etc.

I also read and reread some novels, though, and I think the Sigrid Undset Kristin Lavransdatter trilogy, which I’d read for the first time ten years before but reread in my last few weeks of pregnancy, was really inspirational to me. The heroine is a strong woman, strong in marriage and strong in pregnancy, and the books detail her (natural, given the time period–they are set in the Middle Ages, written in the 1920s) births and her breastfeeding and her co-sleeping, as well as her close relationship with her sons. Before having my son, I had no intention of co-sleeping, no plans for extended breastfeeding, and no idea how I would relate to a boy. I wouldn’t say I got all my ideas from those novels, but I do think the books had a big effect on me–and, importantly, a different kind of effect than when I read them straight out of grad school as a twenty-three-year-old new bride.

What should I read, or reread, this time around? Undset again, or someone else?


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November 2011


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