Becoming a first time parent is both exciting and nerve wracking at the same time! When I was pregnant with Anna, I did so much reading it was ridiculous. There are so many choices to make in such a little amount of time and the whole aspect of having to raise a tiny human to become a respectable member of society one day sounds like a daunting task.
From diapers, to car seats, to bottle or breast feeding, birthing preferences, and everything in between, there are so many choices, options, and opinions on what is best. What terrified me most was pregnancy and childbirth because those were two things I’d never experienced before and the unknown scared the living daylights out of me.
In case you’re finding yourself in similar shoes, I thought I would share with you my pregnancy reading list. I would call it my first time mom reading list but truth be told, I imagine that each pregnancy has its own anxieties that come with it, and revisiting some, if not all, of these books during each pregnancy might not be such a bad idea. At least, that’s what I plan on doing.
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This book was great because it was very practical, you read it little by little through each month of pregnancy and it helps you to know what is going on in your body and why.
I loved this book because I feel like becoming a mom is such a spiritual experience as it is. I wanted a Christian perspective on what to expect and this provided just that, in a light-hearted, humorous kind of way. This book is an easy read and definitely one I recommend for first time mamas.
This book I definitely plan to read with each pregnancy. It is a devotional that talks about the labor of motherhood, not just labor and delivery. It really helped to prepare me spiritually for what I would experience during labor and as I entered into motherhood. Whether you choose medicated, or not, labor is a very emotional and invigorating experience. It was the most empowering moment I think I have ever had in my life. This book helped to prepare my heart for that moment before I even felt the first contraction.
So this book isn’t actually a pregnancy related or motherhood book at all. But it is about calming your anxieties and finding peace amidst the chaos. And for me, I needed to find peace during pregnancy. I loved this book because it was an incredible reminder to cast my anxieties on the Lord, who held me, and my baby girl, every step of the way.
This book I actually read right after Anna was born but I think it would have been helpful to have read it beforehand. This book was a game changer for me because I found sticking to a schedule when it came to feeding and sleeping was more exhausting than it was worth. This was just for me personally, though. I have friends who have thrived off of getting their babies on a schedule with other methods like Babywise and Taking Cara Babies. I loved how this method is sort of baby-led where you’re encouraged to follow her cues for sleep. We did start a bedtime routine very early and as Anna got older, that has helped a ton!
This book is great for if you want to breastfeed! I read some of it before I went into labor and found it useful to refer back to in the early weeks when Anna and I were still learning. I will say this book is very dry and educational but it had a lot of great and useful information! I had it on my kindle so I could easily take it to the hospital with me in my go-bag.
Another resource for breastfeeding that I found useful was the Exclusive Pumping website. I had to exclusively pump for the first month of Anna’s life because we had trouble with breastfeeding and I wish I had looked into this a little bit before she was born. I was not prepared for this possibility at all. I naively thought breastfeeding would be much easier for me than it was so I wish I would have been more prepared for if it wasn’t.