(Like a Mother) [PDF READ] Ã Angela Garbes
Winter Magic yErsOverall this was definitely an interesting and sometimes cringe inducing read that left me with a lot of new facts to wave around at the bar and a continued appreciation for how traumatic pregnancy can be UPDATE For those who want info on breastfeeding and why pushing new moms to nurse is misguided check out this article on the Daily Beast As a new mother and feminist killjoy I was so excited to read this book Everything about its premise perfectly encapsulated where my mommy brain now resides There were so many wonderful parts of this book The chapter about the placenta was utterly fascinating and contained a level of knowledge that I wish I had possessed while pregnant And then came the chapter on breastfeeding I knew that it was coming but I had certain expectations that left me so wanting that I never finished the book The author goes on for pages about the benefits of breastfeeding facts that are consistently shoved down the throats of every pregnant woman and new mom WE GET IT Her mentions of women who decide not to nurse are very few and far between and come almost as an afterthought When my daughter was born I desperately wanted to breastfeed and when she latched perfectly the first time it was incredible We were so in sync even the nurses commented on it Once I got home however the stress of being a new mom recovering from 31 hours of labor followed by an emergency c section and a five day hospital stay due to high blood pressure and an infection left me beyond exhausted Keeping up with feedings every two hours was impossible in my condition and when my milk supply decided it couldn t keep up with my daughter s growing appetite I felt like an utter failure The mental toll this took on me can t be overstated I struggled and struggled with the decision to switch to formula feeding 100% I felt like the worst kind of selfish mother but once I made the decision everything became so much easier for me AND my daughter Feminism is about supporting women no matter what choices they decide to make How we want to live our lives especially the decisions we make as mothers isn t up to anyone else It s between us and our soulsgodwhatever And while I applaud the author for taking on such a hefty subject she did a grave disservice by not wholly honoring new mothers regardless of their decision to breastfeed or bottle feed There s a pretty good consensus nowadays that pregnancy guides are problematic in various ways They re condescending judgmental and aren t very informative There s a real need for books that speak to the science of pregnancy and don t infantilize women when offering advice and Angela Garbes s book is a step in that directionWhile much of this is personal narrative Garbes does some deep dives into subjects most mothers encounter during pregnancy and childbirth like wtaf is a placenta why childbirth destroysour pelvic floor and why breast milk is the most brilliant human creation ever She confronts the myth of long standing pregnancy advice about abstaining from caffeine and alcohol I love sushi and freuently mused during pregnancy that if I lived in Japan no one would be telling me to avoid it And perhaps most importantly she talks about stigmas surrounding miscarriage and postpartum depression Again this isn t a science heavy book but there s a lot of great information that women don t receive during pregnancy that can arm them with agency in their pregnancies and births Which is SO desperately needed for maternal care in this countryAnd a big HELL YES to a pregnancy book by a woman of color 3 I have complicated feelings about this book As a new mom reading this in the trenches of around the clock nursing and diapering and soothing there were passages that spoke to me so intimately but in reality most conversations with other moms feel that way to me I appreciated this book but felt it was of a memoir than a scientific or feminist guide I was book but felt it was of a memoir than a scientific or feminist guide I was surprised by the number of things she was shocked to learn all of which I was aware of through the most basic internet research and conversations with my doctor I supposed my take away is that voices are always needed to build a complete picture of what early parenthood looks like so in that sense the book has a lot of value But I did not find it to be an objective source of information Also for the love of God why do people hate epidurals so much I want to share for any considering one that the moment it kicked in was the happiest of my entire life At 31 weeks pregnant this is the first and probably only book about pregnancy that I will have read before my baby arrives Being pregnant means being constantly overwhelmed and inundated by information I have been picky about where I seek it especially if I m going to be committing myself to a 200 page bookI knew when I saw the title of this book that it was the one for me I needed something that would be unapologetically feminist empowering without being sanctimonious and candid about the realities of pregnancy birth and motherhood without without making me anxious than I already am about the toll that they take on the mind and bodyThis is very much a hybrid of a personal memoir and an informational book and that makes it mercifully highly engaging I gained value from reading about this like minded woman s thoughts emotions and
experiences because there is of course a certain universality to all of itThe common themes throughout are ones that I ve because there is of course a certain universality to all of itThe common themes throughout
"are ones that "ones that ve a great deal of time thinking about myself the endless barrage of information and how sifting through these contradictory messages amplifies the already tremendous sense of responsibility ou have as an expectant mother and the distinct indifference within the medical community when it comes to dealing with women s health to name a fewIn addition to addressing these cultural topics Garbes also provides fascinating explanations of for example the placenta which I didn t even know was an organI m coming away from reading this book with a better understanding of my own body reassurance that my own thoughts and feelings are normal and a sense of confidence that I ll be better euipped to advocate for myself as I navigate post partum life and new motherhood I thought that the premise was interesting but the book seems to be aimed at people who have never had babies or know nothing about childbirth It seems like an informational text as opposed to a response to culture or analysis Perhaps if I were pregnant for the first time I would appreciate this book I don t know But having had 3 children with natural births and nursed them all for a long time I often felt like interjecting her narrative to give her some advic. Physiology biology chemistry and psychology of pregnancy and motherhood informed by research reportage and her own experience With a journalist’s curiosity and discipline a mother’s urgency and a food writer’s insatiability she explores the science behind the pressing uestions women have about a number of subjects including postpartum hormones breast milk and miscarriageInfused with candor and humor born out of awe appreciation and understanding of the human body and its workings Like a Mother is a full frontal look at what’s really happening underneath our skin and to it and why women need to know. Ut Garbes use of the literal unfolding of paper as a metaphor for the transformation of motherhood gradual and all at once makes me almost believe I can empathize At first I see the unfurling of tissue and viscera the way our placenta unraveled would occupy miles of space Then the image gives way to a paper fortune teller the intricately folded piece of paper that my friends played with in the cafeterias and study halls of middle school You fold down corner after corner again creating blank chambers on which to write future possibilities You place The Guitar Style of Jerry Reed your fingers inside and move them inward and outward opening and closing and opening and closing as the paper predicts what might become ofou After الإيضاح لمتن ايساغوجي في المنطق you might unfold it and lay it flat on the table but it isn t the same piece of paper It holds something else now imbued with hope anxiousness and curiosity for the future 230 As much as I wish I could use a paper fortune teller to help me decide if motherhood is an undertaking I want to experience I can t I ve instead become research obsessed About aear ago I read an incredibly interesting article about breast milk production of oligosaccharides solely for a baby s gut microbes and I was fascinated Which other natural phenomena of motherhood are complex than I ever imagined It turns out all of them seem to be Since then I have been reading up on the idiosyncratic properties of mother s milk which damn my social media algorithms has also gotten me caught in webs of articles pertaining to motherhood and birth Research is knowledge and knowledge is power and power is control I am a control freak I think I m tricking myself into believing that research will tip the scale and make the decision evident The research component is necessary for any decision I make big or small I feel isolated in that the most massive internal conflict of my life with the most conseuences either way be it good or bad seems to be an inherent or instinctual desire for most people I believe I am good with babies and children I am gentle creative loving all things that would make a uote good mother But I am incredibly anxious and frankly I just really enjoy my life as is and I hesitate to jeopardize making it something I don t Is that selfish Sure but don t for one second think that having a child doesn t have its own roots in selfishness Either way it isn t a decision I want to take lightly and it is a decision I wish people did not take lightly Up until recently I was completely oblivious to how difficult and depressing the transformation into parenthood is society used to consider it taboo to speak about it in anything other than a positive light but now mothers are being open about just how hard it is As Garbes says We lack stories diverse stories about pregnancy and motherhood I m already dissatisfied with the care a woman receives after birthing a child and I haven t even come close to experiencing firsthand My sister s prenatal and postpartum care opened my eyes to the ways our cultural norms relentlessly fail expectant mothers Doctors not to mention random members of society meticulously monitor Riders of the Sea your body and choices when pregnant but postpartum care is essentially non existent You re onour own Hormonal changes aside this lack of support leaves no room for uestion as to why so many women suffer from postpartum depression Living away from home and being conscientious of my own hormonal issues I worry I won t have the support I always envisioned I d have The old adage It takes a village to raise a child is so true and we no longer have villages we live in a culture that is obsessed with autonomy and the nuclear family unit Now as Garbes explains many expectant mothers hire a doula especially if they live away from
extended family While I think doulas are wonderful I find it sad that our culture must hire andfamily While I think doulas are wonderful I find it sad that our culture must hire and for support care and wisdom that we as women should naturally provide one another especially since those women using doulas are white upper class what do other women without family closeby do Many are an island They endure the hardship of motherhood alone This book brought what most books on the topic lack anatomy and science I m sure we all know how babies are made and enter the world but Garbes puts full body female health into perspective all while not dismissing or undermining anecdotal experience The most fascinating part of this book is at the end when Garbes discusses the exchange between fetal and maternal cells Garbes highlights the recently discovered ubiuity of microchimeric cells in the female body and their role in maternal injury recovery like in C section scars so when someone says they are changed after motherhood it is true down to the cellular level If Jewish Women Speak About Jewish Matters you want an all encompassing meditation on motherhood from placenta encapsulation to the fluctuating feelings of self worth to the tit spraying milk soaked post baby laugh out loud sex scenes this book is forou In fact think everyone could benefit from reading this not just expectant mothers mothers who need to feel less alone or the baby curious researchers like me This is an ARC To be published May 2018 Although I am not now a mother and in all probability I will never be pregnant or give birth I am fascinated by childbirth and have read a fair number of books on the subject This book is different in how deeply it delves into the science of pregnancy
THE INFORMATION ON THE PLACENTA ANDinformation on the placenta and in particular was astonishing and fascinating The information on the pelvic floor should be given to all pregnant women On the other hand the feminist and culture parts of the book were hit and miss some parts were interesting and other parts were odd and I disagreed with the author a few times in those sections True female reproductive health which is the foundation of everyone s health reuires that the social systems in which we live allow us to make informed choices about what is best for each of us35 stars I waffled for a long time between a 3 and a 4 on this one What I liked I learned a lot The amount I didn t know about this particular piece of women s health was ridiculous Garbes takes the reader through the arc of childbirth from pregnancy to post partum and links that to the science What is a placenta and what does it actually do How did the favoured lie on our back birth position originate Spoiler King Louis XIV was a bit of a freak What s the actual deal with breast milk and doulas and pelvic floor therapyWhat I wanted to be different Less memoir science I was happy to have the author pepper in a few personal anecdotes but it became less appealing when those anecdotes seemed to become the basis of the final chapt. Tistics; online sources will scare ou with conflicting and often inaccurate information; and even the most trusted books will offer information with a heavy dose of judgment To educate herself the food and culture writer embarked on an intensive journey of exploration diving into the scientific mysteries and cultural myths that surround motherhood to find answers to her uestions that had only previously been given through a lens of what women ought to do instead of allowing them the freedom to choose the right path themselvesIn Like a Mother Angela offers a rigorously researched and compelling look at the. ,
This Is Excellent I say that as a mother as a maternal child health MPH and as a woman This tells it like it is with the science and research and sociology to back it up I laughed i underlined I wrote in the margins I only wish I d had this when I was pregnant She writes about that dreaded postpartum poop with a candor that I loved This should be mandatory reading for pregnant people And anyone who loves them and cares for them In the introduction to Like a Mother Angela Garbes writes This book is not meant to be a traditional pregnancy guidebook with advice on what or how to do things but after reading each of its chapters closely it s still unclear to me what it is intended to be As best I can figure a food writer got pregnant had a baby had some friends who had some babies wrote an essay about breastfeeding that went viral and got a book deal She then wrote about all of the things that bothered or intrigued her along the way The result is a journalist s stream of consciousness including personal experiences research anecdotes and opinions It could have worked and in a few places most notably the chapter featuring microchimerism it does But the vast majority of Like a Mother features a lack of coherence as it covers factual and theoretical ground already well trodden by others such as Emily Oster for the former and Judith Warner for the latter We hear almost nothing about the emotional landscape of the postpartum experience the alienation from The TV Writer's Workbook: A Creative Approach To Television Scripts your own body the massive identity shift she wrote and I wondered under what rock Garbes lived before becoming pregnant Lots and lots of ink has been spilled on that topic The same goes for revelations like how presumptuous people are toward pregnant women the freuency of miscarriage the imprecise nature of due dates and how ludicrous it is to expect abdomens to bounce back weeks post birth Why don t we talk openly about the fact that while there is much joy in becoming a parent caring for aoung child is also grueling sometimes depressing work she wrote and I screamed back at the pages We do Yes these are important topics of conversation but they are not rare among women of childbearing age who freuent the internet Her assertion to the contrary made it difficult to give the book the benefit of the doubt to hang in there through seeming non seuiturs and storytelling that sufficed but didn t grabIt s a shame because Like a Mother contains a good deal of valuable commentary The nitty gritty of pregnancy and birth COULD still be talked about much openly especially IRL and in front of men There ARE many right ways to have a baby Birth is both a normal everyday occurrence and a significant medical event Amen In pregnancy developing babies are of the utmost importance NV Level 3 Health and Social Care yes But so are mothers And similarly It is easy for mothers to focus our attention away from our own needs and onto those of our tiny helpless babies after all they will only be thisoung once But we will never be this oung again either Hear hear For the many women who have uterine fibroids and have undergone surgery to remove them a C section may be the safe natural option Labeling unmedicated vaginal birth as natural creates a false binary Sing it sisterAnd as a final example of Garbes s capacity for crisp insight we have Would be mothers are no or less virtuous than any other person but our expectations for them immediately shift when pregnancy enters the picture She also makes three notable policy recommendations First if we re telling women that they should breast feed exclusively for six months then we should give them at minimum the same amount of paid family leave Second enough women experience pelvic pain and pelvic floor disorders after childbirth to justify a physical therapy protocol similar to the one in place for ACL injuries Third research needs to be done on women s bodies including placental function I wish Garbes had gone deeper with that last big point though researching rather than just asserting how much the lack of knowledge reflects sexism as opposed to the unlimited frontier of science particularly when impacted by latent Puritanism Do we know for example about the prostate About the biomechanics of male pleasureShe d be precisely the person for that job since Garbes can hang with the best of them when distilling little known biological information Her description of the clitoris left me intellectually panting She brought the placenta alive It s a carnal version of satellite photos of river deltas small and large tributaries all reaching from remote corners to fill the powerful stream that is the umbilical cord And breasts receive the same treatment Hundreds of alveoli cells gather into grapelike bunches called lobules and groups of these lobules come together to form a lobe The average breast is made up of twelve to twenty lobes which are spread throughout the breast like the petals of a flower Milk ducts act as plumbing transporting milk from their
Respective Lobes These Ductslobes These ducts up and milk from various lobes mix together and continue traveling to the nipple where the liuid can exit the body She also shows uniue strength at addressing sexuality without sueamishness Just as I reached my first postpartum orgasm breast milk sprayed and I mean sprayed like a fire hose not a garden hose not a gentle trickle from a tap out of both of my boobs hitting our pillows our headboard and my husband s face And I very much appreciated Garbes s perspective as a woman of color wishing for passages like the following I ve spent my entire nonpregnant adult life in a body with large brown breasts a soft round belly and plenty of curves a body I have struggled to see as beautiful and sometimes even acceptable in a culture that overwhelmingly celebrates people who are thin and white It s a reality many of us have to contend with at some point that what happens to us at the end of pregnancy and childbirth may look different because we look different from the average white womanThat s a lot to like about a book I found incredibly frustrating and difficult to finish Perhaps at the end of the about a book I found incredibly frustrating and difficult to finish Perhaps at the end of the it s Garbes s editor with whom I have a bone to pick Or maybe Like a Mother is specifically for people who have never been pregnant or read other material on the topic Either way with the exciting subtitle A Feminist Journey Through the Science and Culture of Pregnancy I thought the book would soar Thanks to the wandering nature of that journey for me at least it did notVersions of this review originally appeared in Golden Gate Mothers Group Magazine and on Ready Mommy s Book Reviews Motherhood it s an unfolding Of course I don t know this firsthand I cannot relate What to read after What to Expect A badass feminist and personal deep dive into the science and culture of pregnancy and early motherhood that debunks myths and dated assumptions offering guidance and camaraderie to women navigating one of the biggest and most profound changes in their livesLike most first time mothers Angela Garbes was filled with uestions when she became pregnant What exactly is a placenta How does a body go into labor Why is breast best What are the signs and effects of post partum depressionBut as she discovered it’s not easy to find satisfying answers Your OB will cautiously uote sta.