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My Mother Wears Combat Boots: A Parenting Guide for the Rest of Us Paperback – December 1, 2007
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emmy winning filmmaker
She was two weeks overdue, no contractions, Group B Strep positive. She lost one and a half litars of blood, and her placenta had to be removed, yet she has the chuzpah to preach against the mainstream medicine. Natural births are all fine, but by all account her and her baby would have been dead if not for modern medical science, plain and simple.
Furthermore, during her stay in hospital she acted like a spoilt brat, flaunting the hospital rules, camping day and night with a throng of friends, interfering with medical procedures and taking her stress on nurses. Childbirth is a very stressful event in any woman's life, it is also a very intimate moment. To any woman it's the most important thing in the world, but one must keep in mind that for medical staff it is a daily event. They have to do deal with a whole ward full of pregnant women, each pregnancy as unique and as special as author's own, some even more so. At least she should have shown some appreciation by letting them help her the best way they could.
I found it's approach to parenting very open minded and honest to the writer's experience. I especially appreciate coming across a book that is aimed at us folks outside the mainstream (not that there is anything particularly wrong with the mainstream, it's just not for all of us).
Also, being a father, I really enjoyed the chapter dedicated to fatherhood and the challenges and solutions therein. Sure, it would be awesome if there was a punk-rock dad book out there (maybe there will be soon), but I felt everything written in the book was either applicable to both parents, and if not, it was illuminating nonetheless.
I continually find myself going back to the book or remembering things i read in there as go through my day -- the Discipline Notes chapter could not have been better written.
Thank you Jessica!
What I particularly valued about her book is that she doesn't only trot out the success stories. One example is her long chapter on the problems of hospital births and how she found the setting for the natural, midwife-assisted birth she wanted--only to end up in the hospital for reasons beyond her control. This allows me, as a reader, to imagine both my ideals for birth & childraising, and see how things can work out under non-optimal conditions.
Plus, she's just a super storyteller. I really could hardly put it down to even make dinner.
What makes this book great is not just the (interesting, inspiring!) content but the format of the book itself. If you know that c-birth is the only way you can safely have your babies, or if your meds won't allow you to breastfeed, then you can certainly find enough meaty content in the chapters on child advocacy, activism with children in tow, balancing parental desires/needs along with the requirements and wishes of the children in the home. The sidebars are awesome for the times when you are Taking a Break for three minutes in the bathroom before having to unlock the door and Actively Parent with all the creativity and kindness you an muster.
(Just for full disclosure, I am the Tracey that was the paid facilitator mentioned in the chapter on our cooperative unschooling effort.)