Sunday, June 1, 2008

Baby Books: Your Best Friend...Or Your Worst Enemy

Let me start by saying that I love to read. Love it, love it, love it. There is nothing better than curling up on the couch with a big blanket...or a big glass of wine....and a good book. I actually use to read for the fun of it. I would buy the latest girlie book by Candace Bushnell or Emily Giffin and learn about what single girls do for fun in the big city.  There was a point in my life where I could relate to these characters and I like to refer to that time as "Pre-Wanna-be-a-Momma".

The Pre-Wanna-Be-A-Momma era ended in January 2007 when I caught a serious case of Baby Fever. I was on a mission...I wanted to be a mommy. But where do I start? Do I just stop taking the pill? Will I get pregnant right away? All these questions and only one place to go for the answers....Barnes and Noble. 

The first time I visited the "Woman's Health" section of Barnes and Noble, I was simply looking for a How-To guide to getting pregnant. Not a birds-and-the-bees, the-wiener-goes-here kind of book....but rather a guide to help me prepare. And I found several great books that told me to get in shape, start eating right, visit the dentist, give up caffeine, give up wine...GIVE UP WINE!!! I put that book back. But seriously, I just wanted some pointers. But then, I started coming across all of these fertility books and I was compelled to read them. And that was where books became my enemy.

The first month I tried to get didn't work. And instead of saying "well, better luck next month", I decided it made more sense to drive to Barnes and Noble and read more fertility books. By the end of that day, I had already diagnosed myself with a fertility problem. I was in tears. I came home and told Eric that I might not be able to get pregnant. I know...I was jumping the gun a bit. But when I didn't get pregnant the second month we tried, I became obsessed. I was reading everything I could get my hands on and I finally came across the perfect book, "Taking Charge of Your Fertility". I was hooked. I decided that I was going to take my basal body temperature every day, track my cycle with an ovulation kit, start eating right, take my prenatal vitamins religiously, and...give up wine. I KNOW! But I was on a mission. And you know worked. That third month I took a pregnancy test at 2:00 in the morning and woke Eric up to help me examine a faint second line. Sure enough...Addison was already in the making!

So as I was saying...about books being the didn't stop with fertility books. Now I was on to the Pregnancy section of Barnes and Noble. I was so excited to stand in front of that section and look at all the cute journals like "The Belly Book" and "The Mommy Chronicles". I should have just stuck to the fun books like that but instead, I picked up a classic. "What to Expect When You're Expecting", which should have been titled "A Week-by-Week Guide to Totally Freak You Out During Your Pregnancy".  Every week was something new to worry about, but for the first three months, every day was a reminder that you could miscarry. I know its always a possibility, but why remind me EVERY WEEK! And as my pregnancy progressed...they started talking about birth defects and other pregnancy complications, like gestational diabetes and preeclampsia, and so now I had 8 million other things to worry and read about. It was never ending. I finally decided, at about 20 weeks, that I was going to put the "scary" books away. I banned myself from WebMD and discontinued my membership to After doing that, I stuck to writing in my Belly Book and reading Jenny McCarthy's "Belly Laughs". The pregnancy went great, and my beautiful, healthy baby Addie was born March 7th. And then on March 10th...when I returned home, I realized I had a whole new stack of books to read....the Baby Books!

I am still trying to get through my stack, but I promise to post and review them as I go along. I also promise to give it a rating from (1) meaning: Totally fun and/or interesting...not scary at all, to (10) meaning: Scary as Hell...I have to call my pediatrician now. First book up for review, "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Baby". Stay tuned.....


  1. I Jen! This is Kelly from the boards.I haven't been able to post on babycenter because it "lost" my password and every time I try to long on/get a new password something comes up.

    On Healthy Sleep Habits...good book, HORRIBLE editing job. Seriously the guy must of been on crack when he wrote it because it is ALL over the place. Although I agree with the 2 hour window (the girls I is really about 1- 1 hour 15 minutes).

    Anyway, please pass my hellos on to the girls and I hope to be posting soon.

    Also, if you didn't see from my blog yet but the girls are STTN! (Well, almost for Julia but close enough for me! 6:30-6:30!!! Sweet!)

  2. Jen,
    LOVE the comment about "What to expect when you're expecting" I call it "What to expect to go wrong at any minute!" I stopped reading it about the same time you did!
    Addie is BEAUTIFUL! I loved reading your blog, you should think about writing a baby book! I found it as honest and entertaining as those Jenny McCarthy books! (my new present to give to expecting moms NOT the what to expect book... ugh.)
    Anyhoo, take care friend! I look forward to watching your beautiful family grow!


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